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Golden Cheese Wreath
This bright-gold loaf tastes subtly of cheese. (With the amount of cheese, you’d expect the flavor would be strong, but it just isn’t; that’s why we add the cheese flavor powder, as it just seems to heighten the flavor of the fresh cheeses.) Besides flavor, the cheese has a wonderful tenderizing effect on the bread — it’s almost brioche-like in consistency, very easy on both tooth and tongue. We like to cut this bread in wedges and serve it with all manner of soups; toasting it a bit will bring out the flavor even more.
4 cups (17 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 cups (6 ounces) grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup (3 3/4 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons extra-sharp cheddar cheese flavor powder (optional, but it really intensifies the cheese flavor)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick, 2 ounces) butter
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
3 eggs
3/4 cup (6 ounces) water
Manual Method: In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients and stir till the dough starts to leave the sides of the bowl. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased surface, oil your hands, and knead it for 6 to 8 minutes, or until it begins to become smooth and supple.

Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl or dough-rising bucket, cover the bowl or bucket, and allow the dough to rise till puffy though not necessarily doubled in bulk, about 1 hour, depending on the warmth of your kitchen. Gently fold the dough in upon itself and turn it upside-down after 30 minutes; this “turn” helps eliminate some of the excess carbon dioxide and redistributes the yeast’s food, both imperative for optimum yeast growth.

Mixer Method: Combine the ingredients as above, using a flat beater paddle or beaters, then switch to the dough hook(s) and knead for 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl or dough-rising bucket, cover the bowl or bucket, and allow the dough to rise, with a turn, as directed above.

Bread Machine Method: Place all of the ingredients into the pan of your machine, program the machine for Manual or Dough, and press Start. Examine the dough about 10 minutes before the end of the final kneading cycle, and adjust its consistency with additional water or flour as needed, to produce a smooth, supple dough. Allow the machine to complete its cycle.

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface, and divide it into three equal pieces. Roll each piece into a 28-inch long rope. Braid the ropes loosely, trying not to stretch the dough. Form the braid into a circle, pinching the ends together. Cover it lightly, and let it rise for 1 to 1 3/4 hours, until it’s almost doubled in bulk and puffy looking. A finger pressed into the dough should leave a mark that rebounds slowly.

Bake the bread in a preheated 375°F oven for 24 to 26 minutes, until it’s light golden brown and sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom; its inner temperature will register 190°F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the bread from the oven, and cool it for several hours before slicing. Yield: 1 large wreath, about 20 servings.
Nutrition information per serving (2-inch wedge, 1/20 of the loaf, 59g): 176 cal, 8g fat, 8g protein, 17g complex carbohydrates
THE 25 MINUTE BAKE IS VERY EXACT AND PERFECT HOWEVER IT’S A GOOD IDEA TO TURN BREAD AROUND DURING THE HALF TIME OF COOKING TO BROWN EVENLY. THIS IS DELIC IOUS1 A 2-3 hour rise works good for the final rise – don’t rush it. this makes a very very big loaf.

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