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Pull-Apart Olive Bread

James Kent
Nathan Congleton/TODAY


Olive Filling
  • 1 cup Kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1/3 cup green olives, pitted
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1⅛ cup roasted garlic
  • 1 lemon, zest of the whole lemon and juice of half
  • 3 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley
  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3⅔ cups bread flour
  • teaspoons fresh yeast
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup milk, at room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • tablespoons softened butter

Chef notes

It isn't easy to improve on the sweet simplicity of a Parker House roll, but this bright olive upgrade does the trick.

Technique tip: Tuck the half moons of dough snugly at the bottom of a loaf pan, but make sure they're not too tight. You want to maintain the seams between them when the bread rises to accomplish the pull-apart effect.

Swap option: You could make this recipe without the olive filling, but you'd be missing the zing that makes it exceptional.


For the olive filling:

Place all of the ingredients except the butter in a food processor, and pulse until the mixture forms a chunky paste. Add the softened butter and continue mixing until combined.

For the bread:


Place the milk, egg and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment.


While the motor is running on speed 2, slowly add the dry ingredients and yeast. Mix the dough at that slow speed for 8 minutes.


Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and place it in the warmest spot in the kitchen until the dough has more than doubled in size, at least 2 hours.


Fold the dough over to deflate it a bit then shape it into a ball and re-cover. Allow the dough to rest for another 15 minutes, then place it onto a floured cutting board. Roll the dough into a 1/8-inch sheet.


Use a 3-inch cookie cutter to cut the dough into circles. Spread the olive filling on every circle then fold each circle in half. Place the half moons, seam-side down, in a row in the bottom of a lightly-greased 4½- by 8½-inch loaf pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the bread proof for 1½ hours.


Preheat oven to 350°F.


Before baking, brush the bread with melted butter and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Bake until light golden brown, about 20 minutes. Brush with butter again as soon as the bread comes out of the oven. Let the bread cool for about 15 minutes before removing from the loaf pan.