I’m a dreamer. I love the feeling of being inspired, being a part of something bigger than myself, and imagining infinite possibilities.
I’m also a realist. I like knowing the that if I work hard at x, then y will happen. I think it’s important to not sugar-coat the truth and be honest with ourselves and others. I value research, statistics and calculated results.
I know the difference between a goal and an objective, and the importance of having both.
I know most people tend to categorize themselves in one category or the other, but I find that depending on the situation, I emulate aspects of both personality types.
Take this Cheddar, Beer and Mustard Pull-Apart Bread, for example. I know that mixing together flour, yeast and salt results in a fluffy, warm bread. I know that cheddar cheese and beer are always a winning combination (yes, that is scientifically proven), and I know that statistically speaking, a recipe inspired by Smitten Kitchen will always be good.
So while I know all these things, I promise there is still something magical that happens when this bread comes out of the oven. This bread has the ability to bring people together, to improve moods and make you feel like you can conquer the world (yes, it’s that good).
You see, I need the realistic side of me to actually follow a recipe, while the dreamer in me lets me know there is a bread that can truly make the world a better place.
Oh and the best part: the dream for actually making this bread was inspired after this shipment of cheese arrived on my doorstep compliments of Cabot Cheese (see, dreams really can come true!). They sent me the following flavors: Seriously Sharp, Horseradish, Reserved Aged, Chipotle and Classic Vermont Cheddar.
I decided to use Classic Vermont Cheddar for this recipe. After opening the package, the cheese was encased by this waxy black substance that was easily peeled off. I had to stop myself from nibbling on it too much, to be sure to save enough for the recipe; it was perfectly smooth, mild and almost “creamy” in flavor. Definitely a cheese I would recommend!
Cabot Creamery is a 1,200 farm family dairy co-op based out of Vermont, and with members in New England and upstate New York. They opened in 1919 and are still passionate about producing quality products and offer cheese, yogurt, butter and more!
Cheddar, Beer and Mustard Pull-Apart Bread
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Keywords: bake bread appetizer vegetarian beer cheese Thanksgiving Super Bowl
For the dough
- 2 1/4 tsp. (1 envelope) yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 2 tbs. unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup plus 1/3 cup beer
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 2 tbs. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 3 tbs. unsalted butter
- 1 tbs. mustard
- 1 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp. paprika
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Several grinds pepper
- 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1. Mix together yeast and warm water. Set aside for 10 minutes.
2. In small saucepan, heat 2 tbs. butter and 1/4 cup beer just until butter has melted. Remove from heat and add remaining 1/3 cup beer. Set aside to cool slightly (want it to be warm).
3. In bowl of stand mixer, mix together 2 cups AP flour, sugar, yeast mixture and salt. Mix on low and pour in butter and beer mixture. Add eggs, one at a time, and mix until combined. Add remaining 1/2 cup AP flour and WW Pastry flour until just combined. Begin using dough hook and mix 3 to 4 minutes on low speed.
4. Place dough in lightly oiled bowl. Cover and set aside 50-60 minutes. Punch-down, cover and let rest about 45 minutes. (You can cover with plastic wrap at this point, if you want to make it ahead. If doing so, remove from fridge about 1 hour before rolling out).
5. Using small saucepan, melt remaining 3 tbs. butter. Remove from heat and whisk together with mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Set aside.
6. In medium bowl, mix together paprika, salt and pepper, Add in shredded cheddar cheese and mix until evenly coated.
7. Spray bread/loaf pan with cooking spray. Roll dough out onto lightly floured surface until it is about 20 x 12 inch rectangle. Brush with mustard sauce. Cut dough crosswise into 5 equal strips (each should be about 12 x 4 inches).
8. Sprinkle cheese onto first strip. Gently place another strip on top of it, sprinkle with cheese, and repeat with remaining strips until they are stacked and all cheese is used.
9. Gently cut stack into 2-inch segments (you will have about 6 to 7). Line dough segments in loaf pan so that each segment is “standing on side” (please see original recipe for additional photos). Cover and let sit 30 to 45 minutes.
10. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake loaf for 25-35 minutes, until puffed and golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cook 5 minutes before flipping it out of pan. Serve warm and enjoy!
~Do you consider yourself more of a dreamer or realist?