Saturday, August 8, 2009
CHEESY GARLIC BREAD
I have actually made 3 trays of this bread in the past 24 hours, between yesterday and today, for dinner/snack, for lunch and now for snacking again (with 4 resident and constantly starving men hovering in the home making snacks can be quite an obsession).
I now, however, find myself quite enjoying bread making. It isn't as tiring as I always think it is and there is a certain satisfaction that the kneading, the waiting and the rising of the dough gives that I cannot get out of baking cakes and cookies or from cooking stir fries or sauteeing sambals. Plus it is not as unhealthy either so its easy on my conscience. I know that I'm not stuffing the people I love with too much fat or oils or sugar whilst filling them up.
I would describe this bread as a very full, compact and densely-soft pillow, crowned with a garlicky and cheesy crust.
It is not a light fluffy bread like the Yoghurt buns I made before but is instead a perfect bread to dunk chunks of into a piping hot, creamy soup or into a hot and spicy curry sauce (as Malaysians would) for breakfast or for salads and barbecues because of its denseness and crusty top or just for snacking on.
It is the best garlic bread I have made so far only this time it's with a cheese topping and it is as rustic as I can ever imagine garlic bread to be.
With bits of thyme sprinkled on the top it gets a lovely extra edge of flavour. This is a recipe from the Good Food magazine that I had bought a backdated issue of at half the price.
Here's the recipe.................
500 gm bread flour
7 gm dry instant yeast (I used about 2 tsp)
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp honey
2 garlic cloves ( I used 5), crushed and chopped
25 gm butter, softened
100 gm cheddar cheese, grated
handful of thyme leaves
Measure the flour, yeast and salt into a large bowl. Mix 300 ml hand hot water with the oil and honey in a jug, then pour into the dry mix, stirring to make a soft dough.
Turn the dough onto the table and knead for 5 minutes until smooth then place in a lightly oiled bowl to rest for 30 minutes or when poked with a finger the indentation stays. This is so that it will be easy to stretch to fit the tin later.
After 30 minutes take it out of the bowl and punch it down to rid of air. Knead 2 or 3 times and then place in a lightly oiled or parchment paper lined swiss roll tin and stretch to fit. You can do this by pushing the dough outwards with your the tips of your fingers from the centre and when it almost fits you can pull the corners to fit the tin snugly.
Mix the soft butter and chopped garlic to a paste and spread over the dough. Grate the cheese over the dough and then sprinkle with thyme.
Bake in a 170 C oven for 30 minutes and the top is a lovely golden brown.
Cut into squares or rectangles and serve with a creamy soup.