Prep 30 mins
Cook 2 hrs
This is a very good bread to make for dinner parties and other occasions. It's pretty, aromatic, and very tasty. Also, it's easy and quite adaptable to what you happen to have on hand. It looks like it's complicated, but it's really easy.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 1⁄4 teaspoons yeast (or one packet)
- 1 cup warm water (~120 F)
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups cheese (I use sharp cheddar, but something like asiago would be yummy, too)
- 1 -2 tablespoon italian seasoning (suit to taste) or 1 -2 tablespoon herbs, of your choice (suit to taste)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder (suit to taste)
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1⁄4 teaspoon paprika
- 1⁄4 cup Italian salad dressing
- Mix 1 c all-purpose flour and yeast in a large bowl. Add butter, sugar, salt and water. Stir or beat with a mixer until smooth, scraping sides of bowl to get all the flour and yeast.
- Add whole-wheat flour and rest of all-purpose flour, stirring/kneading until smooth.
- If you have dough hooks for your mixer, you can just keep using those until the dough is smooth and springy. If not, turn dough onto a floured surface and knead by hand until the consistency is right.
- Grease a large bowl and turn dough into it. Cover and let rise for 1 hour, or until double.
- When dough has risen satisfactorily, punch it down and turn it out onto a floured cookie sheet. Let rest for a few minutes.
- Mix together all filling ingredients except salad dressing.
- Roll or stretch dough into a 15x12" rectangle (about the size of the cookie sheet).
- Drizzle dough with salad dressing, smoothing it evenly over the surface. Leave about 1" margins on edges of dough.
- Sprinkle the filling mixture over the dough, again leaving 1" margins.
- Roll dough up, jellyroll style, with one of the long sides. Pinch seam together to seal (hence the non-oiled margin).
- Shape into a ring (I found it easiest to cut about 0.5" off each end, so that there was virgin dough exposed and then pinch that together, as it's stickier).
- Cut slashes in ring at 1" intervals.
- Cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until double.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Sprinkle ring with extra cheese, sesame seeds, extra Italian seasoning -- whatever floats your boat.
- Bake for 40 minutes, or until it sounds hollow when tapped.