Monday, June 10, 2013

Garlic Pull Apart Cheese Bread , my version

You're going to want to sit down for this one.....

Here's the beauty shot, right up front.  I think we should take a moment and look at this.  Yeah, it's light and airy but substantial and tender.  It's laced with garlic and cheese and herbs and pepper.  It's one of the best things I've "winged" in a very long time. 

I've had a rough day, I wanted something decadent.  I wanted something rich.  I wanted something comforting and delicious. I wanted something extravagant.  I'd planned on pasta for dinner, this seemed the brilliant side.  I must say, in this instance, I think I have absolutely nailed it.  First time out, no testing, no opinions from friends, nothing.  Make these.  You'll LOVE them!!  


2 cups a/p flour
1 tsp yeast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 cup +2 TB warm water

1/4-1/2 cup butter
3 garlic cloves (or more or less to taste)
parsley, salt, pepper, oregano
grated Parmesan cheese (as much as you love)

Just the long winded, commentary and pictures version of this recipe today.  

In a vessel that has some form of measurement on the side (I use my )  put in the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, water and mix with a spoon or spatula for a minute or so until it's a relatively cohesive shaggy blob of very very very wet dough.  Put the lid on and leave it to rise until it's doubled.  MINE took 30 minutes BUT remember I make bread daily so I have yeast in the air and everything rises faster here. 

Lightly butter a dish (hahahaha  did I seriously take two pictures of buttering?  hahaha sorry)

In a glass bowl combine the butter, garlic, herbs and microwave until melted.  Mix in a little cheese and taste to be sure you love it.  Be sure to keep it quite liquid, we are going to coat the dough in this stuff.

When the dough has risen/doubled, it looks like this, hardly a dough but TRUST me here.  I haven't steered you wrong before with this super wet dough and I won't this time either.  I don't have any before pictures because I was making this up as a quickie and it was when I pulled the dough out that I realized I was going to blog this...  just in case you were wondering.
Tip it onto a relatively well floured board and flip it a time or two.  Pat it into a rectangle and with a bench scraper, chop it in half then chop each half into a bunch of little pieces, I think I got 22 or so.  Roll them into little, loose balls.  Try not to use too much flour, just enough to have the dough not stick to your hands.  I put a little on my palm then clap it off. 
Roll each ball in the melted butter/herb/cheese mixture and put in the prepared dish.  Be quick here, a dunk and flip is all it needs.  Do NOT fret about the butter that isn't absorbed yet, this is NOT going to end up an oily mess, I assure you.
Arrange them in a flat layer in the dish and leave them to rise.  I put mine in the oven with the light on for about 30 minutes to go from this to this:

Bake in a PREHEATED oven set at 375 for 30-40 minutes or until you can pull the center ball out and eat it and know that it's cooked :)  Yep, I DID!  I grabbed the middle one by the 'head' and yanked it out and ate it!  MMMMMMMMMMMM

You can pull and eat straight from the dish, after you let it rest about 5 minutes, or you can tip it out and pull it...  Connor went mad for it, there's none left!!  He said it was the best bread I'd made and that's high praise because we all know exactly HOW much bread I cook.

It's a quick and easy and CHEAP side for any meal but worked beautifully with my pasta tonight.  The balls are rich and buttery but still have good texture and chew because the base dough is good, quality, old school and in fact it's the "crusty Italian loaf" dough that I make but I simply cut the recipe in half.  

Here's some requisite beauty shots:

I tipped it out to see what it was like upside down... oh yeah, crunchy bits on the edges, hello!
And, we're back to this...  Seriously, go make this.  You're going to love it


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