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Cheddar Cheese Bread Recipe

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Cheddar Cheese Bread, a beloved staple in the world of savory baking, is renowned for its rich, cheesy flavor and soft, fluffy texture. This bread, blending the sharp, distinctive taste of cheddar with the comforting feel of freshly baked dough, has gained immense popularity among both amateur and professional bakers. Its versatility is a key appeal; it can be served as a standalone snack, paired with soups, or used as a base for sandwiches. The recipe’s adaptability allows for various interpretations, making it a favorite in kitchens worldwide. Whether for a family dinner or a special gathering, Cheddar Cheese Bread is a delightful addition to any meal.

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Ingredients and Variations

When it comes to making Cheddar Cheese Bread, the ingredients play a pivotal role. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Essential Ingredients:
    • Flour
    • Yeast
    • Salt
    • Cheddar cheese
    • Butter
    • Milk
  • Variations:
    • Different cheeses like Gouda or Parmesan
    • Herbs like rosemary or thyme
    • Additions like garlic or jalapeños for an extra kick

For more ideas on cheese varieties and baking techniques, check out Serious Eats, which offers a wealth of information on exploring cheese varieties.

Step-by-Step Preparation

Preparing the Dough:

  • Begin by activating the yeast. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast and a pinch of sugar in warm water. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes until it becomes frothy, indicating that the yeast is active. In a separate bowl, mix the flour and salt. Gradually add the yeast mixture and melted butter to the dry ingredients, stirring until a dough begins to form.

Mixing in the Cheddar and Other Ingredients:

  • Once the dough starts to come together, add the grated cheddar cheese. If using any additional ingredients like herbs or other cheeses, fold them into the dough at this stage. Ensure that the cheese and other additions are evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Kneading and Resting the Dough:

  • Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead it for about 8-10 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic. If it’s too sticky, add a little more flour, but be cautious not to make the dough too dry. Place the kneaded dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a damp cloth, and let it rise in a warm, draft-free area. This process, known as proofing, allows the dough to double in size and can take about 1-2 hours.

    During the first rise, the dough develops flavors and textures crucial to Cheddar Cheese Bread. Once the dough has doubled, punch it down gently to release any air bubbles. Shape the dough as desired – into a loaf, rolls, or a braided bread – and let it undergo a second, shorter rise. This second rise ensures a light, airy texture in the final product.

Before baking, preheat the oven to the recommended temperature. The dough should be baked until it’s golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped. This step is crucial as it develops the crust and cooks the bread thoroughly. Let the bread cool slightly before slicing to allow the structure to set, ensuring perfect slices of cheesy, homemade bread.

Baking the Bread

Baking is where the magic happens. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Oven Temperature: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Baking Duration: Bake the bread for about 25-30 minutes.
  • Checking for Doneness: The bread should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped.

For detailed baking tips, visit King Arthur Baking, an excellent resource for expert baking tips.

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Nutritional Information

Cheddar Cheese Bread is not only delicious but also offers nutritional benefits:

  • Caloric Content: It’s a high-calorie food, mainly due to the cheese and butter.
  • Nutritional Benefits: Provides protein from the cheese and carbohydrates from the flour.

Pairing and Serving Ideas

Cheddar Cheese Bread is incredibly versatile and can be paired with a variety of dishes. It’s perfect as a standalone snack, especially when warm and fresh out of the oven. For a heartier meal, pair it with a bowl of creamy tomato soup or a crisp garden salad. It also makes an excellent side for pasta dishes or a flavorful base for sandwiches. During special occasions, serve it as an appetizer with a selection of dips or as part of a charcuterie board. Its rich flavor and satisfying texture make it a hit in any setting.

Storage and Reheating Tips

To keep Cheddar Cheese Bread fresh, store it in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. For longer storage, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to a week. To freeze, slice the bread and store it in freezer bags for up to 3 months. When reheating, warm it in a preheated oven at 350°F for about 5-10 minutes to restore its crusty exterior and soft interior. Avoid microwaving as it can make the bread soggy. Proper storage and reheating will ensure your bread remains delicious and enjoyable.

FAQs

Can I use different types of cheese in this recipe?

  • Absolutely! While cheddar is the classic choice, feel free to experiment with other cheeses like Gouda, mozzarella, or a blend for different flavors and textures.

Is it necessary to let the dough rise twice?

  • Yes, the first rise allows the dough to develop flavor and texture, while the second rise gives the bread its final shape and ensures a light, airy loaf.

Can I make this bread gluten-free?

  • Yes, you can use gluten-free flour blends designed for bread baking. Keep in mind that the texture and flavor might slightly differ from traditional bread.

How do I know if my yeast is active?

  • After mixing the yeast with warm water and a pinch of sugar, it should become frothy within 5-10 minutes. If it doesn’t, the yeast may be expired or the water temperature was incorrect.

Can I add other ingredients to the bread?

  • Definitely! Ingredients like herbs, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, or even nuts can be added to enhance the flavor of the bread. Just ensure they are evenly distributed in the dough.
Cheddar Cheese Bread Recipe

Cheddar Cheese Bread Recipe

This Cheddar Cheese Bread recipe offers a delightful blend of rich, sharp cheddar and soft, fluffy bread. Perfect for cheese lovers, it's versatile enough to be a snack on its own, a side for soups and salads, or a base for hearty sandwiches. With simple ingredients and clear instructions, this recipe is suitable for bakers of all levels.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Rise Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American, Comfort Food
Servings 12 slices.
Calories 200 kcal

Equipment

  • Large mixing bowl
  • 9x5 inch loaf pan
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Dough kneading surface (countertop or board)
  • Oven

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 packet 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water about 110°F
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 1 ½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • Optional: ½ teaspoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon fresh herbs (like rosemary or thyme), extra cheese for topping

Instructions
 

Prepare the Yeast Mixture:

  • In a small bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and let it sit for 5-10 minutes, or until frothy.

Mix the Dough:

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, and optional garlic powder and herbs. Add the yeast mixture and melted butter. Mix until a dough begins to form.

Knead the Dough:

  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead for about 8-10 minutes, until smooth and elastic. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour.

First Rise:

  • Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover with a clean cloth and let it rise in a warm place for about 1-2 hours, or until doubled in size.

Add Cheese:

  • Punch down the dough and knead in the shredded cheddar cheese until evenly distributed.

Shape and Second Rise:

  • Shape the dough into a loaf and place it in a greased 9x5 inch loaf pan. Cover and let it rise for another 30-45 minutes.

Preheat Oven:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).

Bake:

  • Bake the bread for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. If desired, sprinkle extra cheese on top during the last 5 minutes of baking.

Cool:

  • Remove the bread from the oven and let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then, transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

  • The type of cheddar used can significantly alter the flavor; aged or sharp cheddar is recommended for a more intense cheese flavor.
  • The dough can be customized with herbs like rosemary or thyme, or additions like garlic powder for extra flavor.
  • Ensure the water for the yeast is warm (about 110°F) but not hot, to activate the yeast without killing it.
  • The bread can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, refrigerated for up to a week, or frozen for up to 3 months.
Keyword Cheddar Cheese Bread Recipe

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