Prep 15 mins
Cook 20 mins
This loaf is wonderful as either an appetizer or a main dish. I substitute the 'italian' meats for whatever strikes my mood at the moment, ham and swiss, corned beef, swiss and sauerkraut, whatever you happen to want that day. You can also add 'extras' such as hot peppers, olives or onions before braiding the loaf. I was lucky enough to find this recipe on the back of a rapid rise yeast packet years ago, and have been using it ever since.
- 3 -3 1⁄4 cups flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 package fast rising yeast
- 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup very warm water
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1⁄4 lb pepperoni, sliced
- 1⁄4 lb hard salami, sliced
- 1⁄4 lb baked ham, sliced
- 1⁄2 lb provolone cheese or 1⁄2 lb mozzarella cheese, sliced
- In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 C flour, sugar, yeast, seasoning and salt.
- Gradually add oil and water, beating with whisk or mixer on low till well mixed.
- Add in remaining flour to make a soft dough.
- Knead dough till smooth, about 3 minutes.
- Cover with a towel and let rest 10 minutes.
- Roll dough into a 14X10 rectangle, and layer deli meats and cheese down center third of dough from end to end.
- With a sharp knife, make slits on both outer thirds of the dough about one inch apart.
- Alternating sides, fold the strips over filling at an angle,"braiding" the dough.
- Preheat oven to 400 and let loaf rise till the oven is ready.
- Bake till golden, about 25 minutes.