10 December 2010

This Bread Contains no Water

Except that which is found in beer. Yeah, you read the right. Also it contains cheese. So, two delicious and wonderful things, all rolled up into delicious, delicious morsels. This bread is somewhat of a departure, as it can't (easily) be used for sandwiches or have things spread on it. It exists in a condiment-free vacuum; a galaxy of tastes yet to be explored. It is also, distinctly, bread - not like dessert breads or pastries.
So, yes, this bread is magnificent and wonderful. It has Lagunitas Brown Shugga and some sharp cheddar cheese. The other ingredients are nothing new - flour, yeast, salt, brown sugar, melted butter (presumably for a bit of flake), buttermilk (for softness), and chives. It, like all the bread I've cooked before, came from Artisan Breads Every Day (specifically, "Soft Cheese Bread").
The dough was very firm compared to the liquid-heavy ones I have been making lately, requiring a lot more hand-stirring time (6 or 7 minutes, compared to a usual 2-4) and a kneading instead of a stretch and fold. For liquids, it had (roughly) equal parts buttermilk and beer, and a 3:1 flour to liquid ratio (by volume).
To get the swirl, after overnight cold fermentation, the dough was rolled flat and cubed cheese placed on top. I then rolled it up from one end, closed the seam with a wet fingertip, and sliced it. I let these slices rise. Sadly, some of them rejected cheese cubes during this process, preferring to use the space for expanding dough. They were reprimanded and the cheese was pushed back in before I placed them in the oven.
The only flaw with the cooking (although I wouldn't call it anything other than cosmetic) were darkened bottoms, as the cheese melted out of the spirals, coated the bottom, and then cooked into a crispy delicious layer. Actually, that sounds less like a flaw and more like a delicious accident.

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