Olive Garden Breadstick Recipe - Todd Wilbur

Makes: 12 to 13 breadsticks

Anyone who loves Olive Garden is probably also a big fan of the bottomless basket of warm, garlicky breadsticks served before each meal at the huge Italian casual chain. My guess is that the breadsticks are proofed, and then sent to each restaurant where they are baked until golden brown, brushed with butter and sprinkled with garlic salt. Getting the bread just right for a good clone was tricky -- I tried several different amounts of yeast in all-purpose flour, but then settled on bread flour with to give these breadsticks the same chewy bite as the originals. The two-stage rising process is also a crucial step in this Top Secret Recipe.

1 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water (105 to 115 degrees F.)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon active rise yeast
16 ounces all-purpose flour (3 cups)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup butter, softened

On Top:
2 tablespoon butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1. Dissolve sugar and yeast in water in a small bowl or measuring cup and let mixture sit for 5 minutes or until it becomes foamy on top.

2. Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Use the paddle attachment on a stand mixer to mix softened butter into flour. If you don't have a stand mixer use a mixing spoon to combine butter with flour. When the yeast mixture is foamy pour it into flour and use a dough hook on your mixture to combine ingredients and knead dough for approximately 10 minutes. If you don't have a stand mixer, combine ingredients and then knead dough by hand on a countertop for 10 minutes. Place dough in a covered container and let it sit for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until it doubles in size.

3. When the dough has doubled, measure out 2-ounce portions and roll the dough between your hands or on a countertop to form sticks that are 7 inches long. Place the dough on parchment paper lined baking sheets and cover for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until dough doubles in size once again.

4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

5. Bake breadsticks for 12 minutes or until golden brown. When breadsticks come out of the oven, immediately brush each one with melted butter and sprinkle with a little garlic salt.

Author: Todd Wilbur
Source: http://starlynxssecretrecipes.lefora.com/2009/12/04/olive-garden-breadsticks-by-todd-wilbur-enjoy/
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