Monday, May 19, 2014

Meatless Monday--Savory Cheddar Cheese Bread

I was recently in charge of bringing breakfast for my Sunday school class and, being the blogger I am, couldn't wait to peruse recipes and choose just the right ones.  I knew I wanted to bring a sweet muffin or scone and a more savory bread option.  As soon as I saw this recipe on the King Arthur Flour site, I knew my recipe search was over.

At first glance, the recipe looks a bit time and labor intensive because you actually make two separate batters and marble them together, but that couldn't be farther from the truth.  Both batters are super simple.  I made each of them in one bowl in about five minutes.  With just one simple ingredient swap, I made the recipe a bit more summery, but you could easily adapt it, just as I did, to include your most favorite dried herb or herb blend.  I'm sure I'll do just that, as well as experiment with using different cheeses.  The end result was a savory loaf of bread with an almost biscuit-like texture that was a big hit with my Sunday school class.  I think you'll like it, too.



Savory Cheddar Cheese Bread
slightly adapted from King Arthur Flour

Ingredients:
For the herbed whole wheat batter:
1 large egg
1 c. milk
1/2 stick thoroughly softened unsalted butter
1 TBSP baking powder
1 TBSP your favorite dried herb (I used summer savory, but you could use rosemary, basil, dill, whatever!)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 c. white whole wheat flour or King Arthur stone-ground whole wheat flour
1 c. (4 oz. by weight) grated cheese (cheddar, swiss, whatever you'd like)

For the cheese batter:
1 large egg
1 c. milk
1/2 stick thoroughly softened unsalted butter
1 TBSP baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper, plus more to taste
1/2 tsp. black pepper, plus more to taste
2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour

Directions:
1.  Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Grease two 9" loaf pans.

2.  To make the herbed whole wheat batter, beat the egg, milk, and softened butter in a bowl until combined.  The butter should be in very small pieces, which will contribute to the bread's texture.

3.  In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the baking powder, herbs, salt, and flour.  Form a well in the center of the flour mixture, pour in egg mixture, and stir to combine.  Set aside.

4.  To make the cheese bread batter, beat the egg, milk, and softened butter in a bowl until combined.  Again, the butter should be in very small pieces.

5.  In a separate medium bowl, mix the baking powder, salt, cayenne, black pepper, and flour.  Stir in the cheese and toss to coat.  Form a well in the center of the flour mixture, pour in egg mixture, and stir to combine. 

6.  Put half the herb batter in each of the prepared pans.  Add half the cheddar batter to pan, filling in spaces around and on top of the rosemary batter.  Put a butter knife, point down, into the batter in each of the pans.  With the tip gently touching the bottom of the pan, drag the knife through the batter in curving motions to marble the batters.

7.  Bake the loaves 50-60 minutes, or until nicely browned and a cake tester inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.

Yield: 2 loaves

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