I have done it. Finally made the perfect Pull apart Bread using my new Kenwood Mix Master J I can now start breathing.
Earlier this month “D” gifted me a “Kenwood Mix master” to assist me in my baking as I was getting more involved in Bread Baking and my back ache issues had increased due to the constant kneading. Since I got the brand new baby I was too scared to use it, treating it with reverence that it deserved.
I then signed up for a group on facebook called “We knead to Bake” where all the amateur bakers would bake one particular bread every month. January’s Bread was a beautiful “Garlic and Cheddar Pull apart Bread”. Pull apart Bread literally means Bread that can just be pulled apart and picked up. Having never eaten or tried baking one I was nervous and the fact that I had never used my Kenwood before did not help at all.
So last week I decided to make a “Paneer (ricotta cheese) pull apart Bread” and it was a disaster from the get go. The day was very windy and cold for a hot summer’s day in Perth. Then the dough was too sticky even when I added a little extra flour, it just did not lose the stickiness. I forgot to oil the dough before putting it to proof. Then when I started rolling the dough it stuck to the working surface. I forgot to keep the bread for the second proofing and after baking when I cut the Bread it was under cooked, dry and soggy. I was so depressed, I had to chuck the whole Bread away and I am a person who hates to waste.
So as the due date by which we had to submit the Bread neared I was on tenterhooks wondering what to do. Everyday some of the amateur bakers posted their gorgeous Breads scaring the day lights out of me. So finally today I mustered up enough courage to make a “Fresh Garlic, Herb and Cheddar Bread”. I took a deep breath before making the Bread and as it started to proof I said a little prayer.
The Bread was beautiful and smelled incredibly good. The fresh herbs picked up from my kitchen garden worked like a charm with the Cheddar Cheese.
Recipe : Makes 1 big loaf (Cooking time 30 minutes, prepping and proofing upto 2 hours)
For the Bread
3 1/2 cup Plain Flour
2 tsp Instant Yeast
2 tsp Sugar
1 cup Water
1/2 cup Milk
1 tsp Salt
Olive oil to coat the dough
Optional : 1/4 Cup Butter Or 1 Egg
Warm the milk and the water together and put the Yeast and Sugar in it. Keep the Yeast in a warm place to forth for 5 – 10 minutes. You need to ensure that the water is just warm enough and not hot else you will kill the yeast. Put the Flour in a bowl add the Salt make a well in between and add the Yeast mixture and start to knead. If you are adding the Egg/Butter you can go ahead and add while kneading as it will improve the texture of the Bread and make it softer.
Knead for 10 minutes till the dough looses its stickiness and becomes soft and smooth ( I let my mix master do the kneading here). Coat with Olive oil, cover and leave for an hour in a warm place till the dough rises and doubles in size.
For the Filling
The beauty of this bread is that you can use a variety of filling. I have used a savory one.
1 cup freshly chopped Basil leaves
1/2 cup freshly chopped Parsley
1 cup Cheddar or Feta cheese (I had used Paneer earlier but felt it made the bread too dry)
3 Garlic cloves finely chopped
1 tbsp Chilli Flakes (optional)
Just before your dough is ready chop the basil and parsley leaves and add them in a bowl with the Cheddar, Chilli flakes and Garlic. If you cannot find fresh herbs you can use dried too but the quantity would be less then a cup for them.
Olive oil to coat the pan (or Butter)
A little flour to roll the dough on your working surface.
1 tbsp Milk to brush the dough before you put it in the oven.
Unfortunately I was so stressed making this bread again I did not take any videos. So I am posting a link to an online tutorial I had seen that helped me assemble this bread.
What I did was punched the dough down to release the air. Then put some flour on my working surface and using a rolling pin rolled the dough into a big square which is not to thick. I then applied some Olive oil (you can use melted Butter) on the rolled dough. Then I put the herbs and cheese on top spreading them equally. If you feel the stuffing is too little make some more and use it. I then used a rolling pin to press the stuffing a little in the dough and then using a pizza cutter cut long thin strips of the dough.
You can use a square pan and make square strips or in a round pan (which you coat with Olive oil) you can make rolls and arrange the dough, like I did.
Now leave the dough in a warm place for another 40 minutes for the second rise. Pre heat the Oven atleast 15 minutes before you bake your bread and when the second rise is complete, brush the Bread with Milk and put it in the oven. Cook for atleast 30 minutes in a pre heated over at 180 Degrees C.
When you tap the bread it should make a hollow sound, this ensures it is cooked.
Serve it warm with some Butter or at room temperature. It is a perfect tea time snack.