Imagine opening your wallet and finding it filled with $100 bills. That is this olive loaf from Madonia Brothers Bakery on Arthur Avenue. Though it's an easy trip from the New York Botanical Garden or the Bronx Zoo, it is also absolutely a destination unto itself.
This bread is packed with juicy, whole, intensely assertive oil-cured olives, folded into a silken, pliant dough. The dough is airy, the olives are dense, the crust crackles. It's served hot and every piece exhales with olive and yeast and toast.
I've never had anything like this. This isn't like, say, a cranberry-walnut loaf, something that has neat, discrete parts you can top with cream cheese. I'm sure you can get an olive loaf you can slice like an apple. But the olive loaf from Madonia is more like a pomegranate -- delicately chambered, generously jeweled. The stuff of myth!
Foolishly only ate some in the car and brought only a fistful to Julian. Dreaming what this would like with stewed figs. Must get more asap.