I’ve really been trying to make homemade bread lately instead of buying biscuits in a can and loaves from the bakery. I’ve had yeastafobia in the past but am finally getting away from that the more and more recipes I try.
The other day I pulled out The Old Farmer’s Almanac Everyday Cookbook and went to a page I had bookmarked when I got it. This recipe is delicious. Though I will admit that I had to make it over again because I tried to adapt it to my breadmaker and screwed up the first time as it was just too big.
The second time I halved the recipe and it fit just fine, but I did have to add a bit more water to make it work. All in all it came out great! My husband doesn’t really care for the taste of rosemary, so I made another batch (this time my hand following the recipe instructions) without the rosemary. I split that into two loaves prior to the step where they rise in the loaf pan, then wrapped them in plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. So we’ll see how those work out later. I will include notes for my bread machine adjustments below the actual recipe.
This is a delicious bread served warm with butter or toasted the next day! Be sure to let me know if you try it!
Herb Cheese Bread
1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
5-6 cups all purpose flour (I used bread flour)
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, softened
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
3/4 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese (mine was just shredded, not finely shredded)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp finely ground dried rosemary (hmmm JUST noticed the finely ground part, I just put the rosemary leaves in)
Grease two 8×4 inch loaf pans. Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup of lukewarm water and sprinkle with the sugar. Let it dissolve, or proof.
In a large bowl, mix 5 cups of flour with 1 1/2 cups warm water, salt, and butter. Add the yeast and continue mixing until the dough is well blended.
Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead for at least ten minutes, until the dough is smooth and pliable, adding flour as needed to prevent sticking. Place the dough in a greased bowl and turn to coat on all sides. Cover the dough with a towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about two hours).
Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured board. Knead in the cheeses and herbs. Divide the dough in half and place each half in a loaf pan. Cover and let rise until the bread is slightly higher than the sides of the pans. Preheat oven to 375 F. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped.
Makes 2 loaves.
My Bread Machine Adjustments
Refer to your bread machine instructions for proper layering of ingredients. Mine calls for adding the dry yeast first in the corner of the cylinder, then add the dry ingredients on top of the yeast. Add wet ingredients except for add ins (for this recipe add the water and butter but not the cheeses and herbs). Set machine to the knead only setting (mine is called Manual). I watched mine and added more water because it was just too thick. Once the consistency looked right I left it alone and waited for the first set of beeps, this is when I added the cheeses and herbs. Then I just waited for it to be done and then placed it in the greased loaf pan. I was running out of time so I didn’t let it rise over the lip of the pan, just to almost the top. But as you can see from the photos it worked out great!