Libyan Herb Bread – Khubzah bil A3shab خبزة بالأعشاب

This is a recipe for savory bread with a spongy texture which uses sfinz dough, and comes out soft and just right every time.   In Libya, it is customary to sit around to gossip and drink tea in the evening, and the tea (flavored with anything from mint and sage to almonds and rose petals) is usually served with baskets of savory finger  food, from herb bread to stuffed burik and savory cookies.  This recipe is a perfect addition to the basket. 



1 cup warm milk and 1/2 cup warm water (or one and a half cups warm water) 
1/2 cup warm water for the yeast  (25g fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon dried yeast + 1 teaspoon sugar) 

4 cups fine white flour
About 50ml olive oil
4 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking powder

Flavorings According Taste:
Rosemary (optional)
Green and/or black olives
Chili peppers (optional)
Cheese (optional)

For the dough, put all the liquid ingredients together and mix well with the yeast and sugar. Add the flour with baking powder and salt. It should be a soft dough.

Mix the chopped ingredients with the dough.
Add the olive oil and mix well. Cover and set aside and leave to rest in a warm place around an hour.
Preheat the oven at 220 C. Grease a loose base cake tin (about 20cm by 20cm), pour in the dough and smoothen. Brush generously with olive oil. Put in the hot oven until golden.

Remove from the cake tin and leave to cool. Serve with mint flavored tea.