While the residents of District Four do live the (slightly) sheltered lives of Careers, favoured by the Capitol, they are not without hardship and were one of the first Districts to rebel. Being by the ocean, however, they always had access to a bounty of food that most others did not. In addition to fish, the sea is home to a nutritional powerhouse in seaweed, which is found in the staple bread of District Four’s citizens. As an homage to their food source, the bread is shaped into the image of fish.
A note about the D4 bread: It is described in the original text as being “greenish.” The truth is, simply adding seaweed to a bread – in any form – does not turn it green. While this effect could be achieved by the addition of a few drops of food colouring, in the interest of keeping food natural + simple, Panem Kitchen has chosen to create the bread as presented here. However, should you be shooting for authenticity, one or two drops of green food colouring will give it a tint. Too much will alter it with a chemically taste. – PK
By December 29, 2013Published:
While the residents of District Four do live the (slightly) sheltered lives of Careers, favoured by the Capitol, they are not …
- 5 sheets yaki nori (roasted nori seaweed)
- 2 1/4 teaspoons rapid rise yeast
- 2/3 cup warm water
- 1 teaspoon sugar for bread
- 1/3 cup olive oil plus more for bowl
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons sea salt plus more for dusting
- 4 cups flour
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese cooking wine)
- 1 tablespoon sugar for seaweed jam
- Place 1 tsp sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add to this 2/3 cup of warm water (about body temperature, 95-100 degrees F). Whisk to combine. Sprinkle the yeast over the sugar/water and allow to sit until foamy (about 5 minutes).
Reserve the soaked seaweed.
- Add to the yeast mixture the olive oil and two of the eggs. Whisk to combine, then add the flour and salt. Mix with your fingers until just combined, then turn out onto a floured counter to knead until smooth and elastic - 5 to 10 minutes.
- Place the dough into an oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk: 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, make the seaweed jam: soak 5 sheets of nori in half cup of water. Pour into a pan, then add 1 tablespoon sugar, soy sauce, and mirin. Simmer until the mixture thickens into a jam.
- Once dough has risen, turn it out onto a floured counter and divide into thirds.
- Roll out dough into a rectangle, then spread seaweed jam, stopping short of the edge to keep it from leaking.
- Roll the rectangle back up lengthwise so that you have a rope, tapering at the ends. Repeat with two remaining ropes.
- Starting at the ends, braid the three ropes together, getting thicker towards the middle. This gives the effect of "scales" on the fish.
- Stop short of the ends, and create a "tail." (See photo.) Smooth creases as best you can.
- Beat an egg and brush over the bread. Transfer your bread to a parchment-lined baking sheet and allow to rise a second time, covered with plastic wrap, for an hour. 45 minutes in, preheat the oven to 375.
- Before baking, brush with the egg mixture once more and sprinkle with coarse sea salt (with a light hand!). Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until bread sounds hollow when tapped with your knuckles. If it begins to brown too quickly, cover with foil. Allow to cool completely before slicing/eating.