I made this incredible cheese bread recipe when I hosted Friendsgiving this year and I loved it. I had never made bread before (besides banana and zucchini) so I was a bit nervous, but it turned out great and was way easier than I had anticipated. I decided to make a few changes so it would be a bit more appropriate for St. Patrick’s Day and turned it into a cheesy beer bread. So. So. Good.
Cheesy Beer Bread (Makes 2 loaves)
6 unbleached bread flour
2 tsp salt
5 tbsp white sugar
1 cup lukewarm water
1 and 1/8 cup lukewarm beer
1 1/2 tbsp instant yeast
1/4 cup melted, unsalted butter
2 cups shredded, sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup minced parsley and chives
Combine the flour, salt, and sugar together in a stand mixer. In a separate bowl, combine the water, beer, and yeast and whisk until the yeast has dissolved. Add beer mixture and melted butter to the dry ingredients. Mix with a dough hook until the mixture is combined. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes. Continue mixing the dough until it becomes smooth and tacky. Add more flour or water if necessary.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead for a couple of minutes. Form dough into a ball and place into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature until doubled in size (about 60-90 minutes). Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. Take one piece and dust with a bit of flour and then use a rolling pin to roll into a rectangle (about 10″ x 16″). Spread half of the cheddar and herbs evenly over the surface of the dough (You’ll use the other half for the second loaf.) Starting with the shortest side, roll the dough up and pinch the seam together. Using a sharp knife, cut the roll of dough down the centre, lengthwise. Rotate each piece so that the cut sides are facing upward and place them side-by-side. Pinch together the farthest end. Keeping the cuts sides facing upwards as much as possible, place the right-side piece over the left-side piece and then repeat. Pinch together the end. Repeat with the other piece of dough.
Preheat oven to 350° F. Bake for 45-50 minutes total, but after 25 minutes of baking, rotate pans front-to-back in the oven. If the bread is already well-browned after 25 minutes, loosely cover with a piece of aluminum foil. Bread should reach about 185° F internal temperature.
Remove the bread from the oven and allow to cool in the pans for a couple of minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the bread and carefully remove the loaves to a cooling rack. Allow to cool for 1 hour before slicing.
Adapted from Seasons and Suppers.
This delicious bread also gave me something to cross off my 25 before 25 list! Hooray! (Also… I have a lot to do in the next 4 months!)