Last month, one of my favorite food blogs, Smitten Kitchen, posted a recipe for cheddar, beer and mustard pull-apart bread. (I still can’t decide which part sounds the best: the cheddar, the beer, the mustard, the pull-apart, or the bread.) Within minutes of the post going up, my friend Laura M. e-mailed me with the subject header: Umm, did you see this?! Yes. Yes, I had. And since I was due for a visit to her new apartment, we decided to christen her kitchen with this awesome recipe. Plus, if there’s anyone I trust when it comes to baking bread… it’s Laura M. She’s pretty much responsible for this work of art. I was there to stir things, take photographs, and say things like: “Do you think it’s ready yet?”
This is a lengthy recipe, so follow carefully.
First, we made the dough.
In a small saucepan, we heated 4 tbsp butter and…
1/4 cup beer. Just until the butter had melted.
Once melted, we removed from the heat, adding another 1/3 cup beer. We set it aside to let cool.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, we stirred two cups of all-purpose flour, 2 1/4 tsp yeast, 2 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp salt.
Oh, no! There was a snafu with Laura’s KitchenAid mixer so we had to pull out the old-fashioned hand-mixer. It was like stepping into a time machine.
With the mixer on low, we poured in the butter/beer mixture and mixed just until the flour was moistened.
Then we added eggs. Two of them.
And another 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour…
And 1/3 cup of rye flour.
We mixed some more.
Then it was time to knead.
Laura M. is an excellent kneader.
Look at that perfect dough ball.
Next, we oiled a bowl and put the perfect dough ball inside.
It got covered loosely with plastic wrap and then set aside for about an hour, as we waited for it to double in size.
Then it was on to the good stuff.
In the same pan we melted the butter and beer in, we melted 3 more tbsp butter.
Removed the pan from the heat and whisked in a tbsp of dijon…
1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire…
And a splash of Frank’s.
Whisk, whisk, whisk. Set aside.
At the bottom of a clean bowl, we combined 1 tsp mustard powder…
1 tsp paprika…
And then spent a few minutes giving 1 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese “the shred.”
(Which I enjoyed sampling!)
Tossed the cheese with the spice…
Turning it into party cheese!
Then I took a two-minute break to go hug Cooper the dog.
When I was finished hugging Cooper the dog, we coated this pan with butter…
And took a peeksie at our doubled dough! HELLO.
It was obviously time to flour the counter.
Laura began rolling the dough into a 20x12 inch rectangle.
She's done this before.
Just making sure we were doing everything right…
Yes, yes we were.
Next up, it was time to brush the dough with the butter-Worcestershire-frank’s-mustard mixture. We brushed all the way to the edge!
Then we cut the dough crosswise into five strips with each strip 12x4 inches long.
And so the fun began with the sprinkling of the party cheese…
Layering one on top of the other…
One on top of the other…
One on top of the other…
And then once all 5 strips were piled high, we gently sliced six 2-inch segments…
Carefully lifting them up, we stacked them and made.them.fit.
After loosely plastic wrapping it again, we set aside for 30-45 more minutes.
Meanwhile, we preheated the oven to 350.
Chatted about this. about that. about this.
We baked for 25-35 minutes, until the loaf got all puffed and brown.
We were so excited to see this!
We ate it with a side of pasta and tomato sauce, and it.was.the.best. In fact, Laura M. used some of the leftover bread for french toast the next morning. Can you imagine?!