How much do I miss you? Let me count the ways. It’s been almost two weeks since my last post and two weeks since I’ve been able to bake. Let us never be apart for so long again!
There have been so many transitions in the last month. I left a job of three years to start anew in a more
challenging fitting position with a previous employer. This job is in the District, so that means I have to take the Metro everyday, reconfiguring how get Miles to and from the school bus, and realizing that I won’t work in the “burbs” (if you consider Arlington the burbs like I do), so no more lunch hour runs to the mall or Home Depot, or Target or Georgetown to get my favorite face soap from Kheil’s.
Now I’ve traded in my car for sneakers, wearing more layers than necessary because I’m not sure what the weather’s going to be like and making sure that I always have an umbrella on hand.
My first week of work was a blur, I had to sit through a three hour orientation followed by a building tour, lunch with my
new old boss, then meeting at least 60 people who’s names I hope to remember by spring. My second week is filled with welcome breakfasts and lunches with various department heads and more meetings than I can keep track of. So far I’m loving every minute of it, but between the new job and helping out a sick friend, it’s left me with little time for my happy place. Well, no, I haven’t had a cheese board lately, but more importantly, I haven’t had time to bake!
That all changed this weekend. I made a point to set aside time to bake and boy did I. I made at least five things in one day that I hope to share my recipes with you this week.
I decided to start with a treat for Miles. He loves my bacon and cheddar breakfast bread, so I decided to make that for him, but with a little twist. I was going to change the cheese and instead of preparing it like a jelly-roll, I was going to braid it.
I think I used a little too much dough, but it was still pretty. I added a little extra shredded cheese on top for texture. Miles ate almost the entire loaf in one day. He usually eats it for breakfast and lunch, then paces himself and saves a little so he can have some for breakfast the next day.
I found that the braided version was just as simple as the jelly-roll and it was a nice change. I think I’ll finally start to change the filling. That is if Miles lets me. He’s pretty addicted to bacon like his mom.
- 1 ½ loaves frozen bread dough
- 1 pound of your favorite bacon
- 8 oz shredded gruyere cheese, plus more for sprinkling
- 1 egg
- 1-2 tablespoons water
- Place the frozen dough in the fridge the night before to thaw. In the morning, take the dough out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature. (You can work with it cold, but it will be much more difficult to work with.)
- While you’re waiting for the dough, cook the bacon until crisp and chop into small pieces.
- Roll the dough out onto a lightly floured surface into a rectangle that’s about 15 inches long and 10 inches wide. Sprinkle about half of the cheese onto the dough, down the center of the rectangle leaving a 3 inch border in each side . Sprinkle the bacon on top of the cheese and then add one more layer of cheese. Press the cheese and bacon layers firmly into the dough.
- Cut 1-inch strips along the sides. Fold strips diagonally over filling, alternating from side to side. Place the loaf on a parchment lines sheet pan, cover lightly, and let rise in a warm place until double in size.
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and combine the egg and water. When the loaf has doubled in size, brush it lightly with the egg wash and bake for 10 minutes. Pull the pan out of the oven and sprinkle cheese on top. Bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until the bread is a deep golden brown. Let the bread cool for a1 least 10 minutes before cutting.