My kids LOVE Olive Garden for their bread sticks and Alfredo sauce. So, when I came across this recipe on this blog, I thought why not give it a shot. To be honest, I wasn't really that hopeful, but I was pleasantly surprised! And I love surprises, so it was a win/win for us! They even had that yummy butter crust on the bottom just like Olive Garden's do! I did alter the recipe a bit, I have made enough bread to know a thing or two about the flavor I like, so here is what I did...
Olive Garden Bread Sticks
(24 bread sticks)
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 1/4 t yeast
4 cups flour (I used bread flour, but all-purpose would work fine)
2 T butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 T sugar
1/2 T salt
4 T butter, melted
1 t garlic powder
1/2 t salt
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Allow it to sit for about 10 minutes until it gets frothy. Add the flour, salt and melted butter to the yeast mixture. Mix in a stand mixer or by hand until fully combined. The dough should be moist but not sticky and should hold in a ball. Knead the dough for a few minutes until it is smooth. Divide dough into 24 pieces and roll with your hands into bread sticks (like making a snake). Place them on a greased cookie sheet. Cover the dough and let it rise in a warm place for 45 minutes to an hour.
Preheat the over to 400 and once it is hot put the bread sticks in. While they are in, melt 4 T butter and mix it with 1 t garlic powder and 1/2 t salt. After the 5 minutes are up, brush the bread sticks with the melted garlic butter. Pop them back in the over for an additional 5 minutes or until they are golden brown. Remove them from the oven and brush them once more with the garlic butter. Serve them warm.