The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

cheese bread

isand66's picture

Last weekend I baked a multi-grain bread using white wine with sweet potatoes which came out as good as I could have expected.  This time I wanted to try using a red wine and what goes better with red wine but chocolate and cheese.  I used a cocoa rouge which is a special type of cocoa that has an intense bittersweet character with a rich deep red color and fudge-like flavor.

In my last bake with the white wine you did not really taste the wine due to the fact that i used so many different multi-grains so I wanted to make sure to keep this one a little simpler.  I two of my favorite flours, durum and white spelt added with some European style flour from KAF and some potato flour.

I also tried to make one loaf using a new cat cookie cutter I just bought, but that was probably a mistake.  The cookie cutter ended up leaving too much of an escape hatch for the cheese which ended up splattering all over the front of the bread.  I guess that's not the worse thing that could have happened.

The end result was a nice flavorful dark and rich bread with the added flavor of the Havarti cheese to put it over the top.  The crumb was nice and open and flavorful with a nice chew.

I used a Merlot from another local winery called Duckwalk on the east end of Long Island.

Directions follow below.

AP Starter

227 grams AP Flour

71 grams AP Seed Starter

151 grams Water at Room Temperature (80-90 degrees F.)

Mix ingredients in a bowl until thoroughly combined.  Cover the bowl and let it sit at room temperature for around 8 hours.  The starter should almost double when ready to proceed.  You can either mix in final dough or put in refrigerator for at most 1 day before using.  If your kitchen is warmer than mine which is usually about 70-72 degrees with my air-conditioning you can proceed sooner.

Main Dough Ingredients

425 grams Refreshed AP Starter (65% hydration) from above

103 grams White Spelt (KAF brand)

200 grams Durum Flour (KAF brand)

220 European Style Flour from KAF (can substitute Bread Flour)

50 grams Potato Flour

15 grams Cocoa Rouge (KAF, you can substitute any dark cocoa but use a good quality)

16 grams Sea Salt or Table Salt

410 grams Merlot Wine

26 grams Walnut Oil

Havarti Cheese (sorry but I forgot to measure how much cheese I used.  I believe it was probably about 10 ounces)


Mix the flours with the wine leaving 50 grams of wine for later in your mixer or by hand for 1 minute.    Let the dough autolyse for one hour in your bowl and make sure to cover it.  Next add in the salt and the starter with the balance of the wine and mix by hand for 2 minutes until everything is well incorporated.  Mix on speed #1 for 2 minutes and speed #2 for 2 minutes or by hand for 5 minutes.

Next take the dough out of the bowl and place it on your work surface.  Do a stretch and fold and rest the dough uncovered for 10 minutes.  After the rest do another stretch and fold and cover the dough and let it rest for 10 minutes.  Do one more stretch and fold and put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and let it sit at room temperature covered for 2 hours.  After 2 hours you can put the dough into the refrigerator for 24 hours or up to 2 days before baking.  Feel free to do some additional S & F's if you feel it is necessary.  I baked the bread about 24 hours later.

The next day (or when ready to bake) let the dough sit out at room temperature for  2  hours.

Next, form the dough into your desired shape and put them in floured bannetons, bowls or on a baking sheet and let them rise covered for 2 hours or until they pass the poke test.  If you want to make the pattern on top, press your cookie cutter into the dough and place it good side up in a floured basket to rise.  When ready to bake, score the loaves as desired and prepare your oven for baking with steam.

Set your oven for 500 degrees F. at least 30 minutes before ready to bake.  When ready to bake place the loaves into your on  your oven stone with steam and lower the temperature immediately to 450 degrees.   The total baking time was around 45 minutes.  When both loaves are golden brown and reached an internal temperature of 200 degrees F. you can remove them from the oven.

Let the loaves cool down for at least an 6 hours or so before eating as desired.

Please visit my other blog at for all of my recipes.

Cosmo resting after a full meal :)

Epsilon's picture

I've decided that I'm gonna start sticking these on a blog rather than the forums. Mostly because this is the first -really- successful bread I've made. Like, I'm making another two loaves of it right now, just with a bit less rising time. :P

The ingredients:

4c AP flour
1/2tsp salt
8oz medium cheddar cheese, diced
1/4c VWG
2oz grated parmesan
1/2tsp ground chipotle pepper
2c water
2 1/2tsp ADY
1tsp liquid smoke flavor
1 egg, beaten with some water to thin it out (for a wash)
1 sugar cube (to proof yeast)

Put the yeast and 1/4c of water into a measuring cup with a sugar cube to proof. While the yeast proofs, put the flour, salt, VWG, chipotle pepper, and parmesan into a bowl. Combine thoroughly, so you don't need to worry about mixing it. If possible, try and break up any chunks of parmesan - they'll make hard little nodules in your bread if you don't.

Once the yeast is proofed, add the yeast along with the other 1 3/4c of water. Also add the liquid smoke flavoring at this point. Knead the dough until developed (and I'll admit, I still haven't quite figured out what dough feels like when "properly developed," but I've had good luck so far...) and toss in your mixing bowl, and cover it to proof.

While the dough proofs, take your 8oz of cheese and cut it up into roughly 1/4-1/2" cubes. Once done, stick it in the fridge until your dough is ready. Don't rise it too much - you'll get that "beery" flavor, and not everyone enjoys the taste of straight CO2! (although I kinda like it, I admit...)

Once the dough has risen to about 1.5-2x its original size, take it out and stretch it out 'til it's about 1/2" thick. Put the cheese cubes on top of the dough, trying to spread them evenly. Now fold the dough, press it out a bit, fold it, press it out a bit, and just repeat 'til you start getting pieces of cheese breaking through or almost breaking through the outside of the dough. Since there's no egg or anything in the bread, it should be perfectly safe to nom on the cheese that falls off - consider it a bonus. ;)

Shape them as you desire (personally, I went with two batard-like loaves, but I don't see why you can't do a boule, a baguette, etc. shape with this?) and let rise again. Rise them until they're about doubled.

While they're rising, preheat your oven to 500F. Once risen (which should be helped by the heat from the preheating oven,) brush the loaves with your egg mixture, slash the tops however you want (I use three slashes down the long axis of the loaf, though I forgot this time...) and stick 'em in the oven with steam (again, personally, I use an old lasagna pan I keep in the bottom of the oven, and toss a cup of water in there. By the time the cup of water is boiled off, that's "enough steam".) For the love of <your deity of choice>, don't make this on a baking stone unless you -want- to scrape burnt cheese off the thing. If you do, at least cover it somehow.

Drop the oven temperature to 400F, and cook for 50 minutes. Enjoy the smell from the liquid smoke that you mixed into it, along with the slight crispy-burnt cheese smell coming from the bits that should have been hanging off the loaf. Feel free to eat the crispy bits - I think they're the best part of the bread!


Cooling loaves:

Crumb porn:

Very tasty bread. I alluded to this when I was writing the instructions, but the first batch of this I made was overproofed - I had a strong CO2 (i.e. "beery") flavor in the loaf. I've got another batch in the oven (since I'm actually making these for other people) that should be significantly less beery. Still though, the crumb is wonderful, the loaf itself is nice and fluffy, and the taste is awesome.

Edit: Oh yes. MUCH better. So much oven spring out of the loaves this time around. I definitely overproofed it the first time, and I think I know exactly where I went wrong.

teketeke's picture

As I mentioned to Larry on the other his post yesterday, I made your cheese bread (   I was about to..).... but I found out that I didin't have enough sharp cheese although I though I had enough...   So, I made " Cheese sheet" to fold into the dough like making croissants instead.


It is not neat.. 

VERY TASTY! They will be our breakfast today :) Thank you, Larry!

There is one thing that bothers me.   I can smell any other breads with instant dry yeast more and more when I heat it up in a microwave since I have known sourdough bread and fruit yeast bread.  I also smell yeasts when I slice it when it is warm slightly( Shouldn't I do that?).    

Happy baking,


ehanner's picture

I have made this bread a few times. I'm a fan of savory breads and this one has everything I like. The Romano cheese is a strong component that can be adjusted to taste. I have backed off the percentage to allow the other flavors to survive and make themselves known. The celery is a surprise. The first time I made this mix I was expecting the celery to be crunchy after baking, but it wasn't at all. The overnight soaking of the flax brings a hearty flavor that is unique and delicious.

The original idea for this bread came from Graham at in AU. He was gracious enough to post pictures of the process which cleared up a few things for me. I added flax for the deep flavor they bring when soaked. Another fellow in the area also posted his results which are outstanding. Here is Johnny's post of the same bread. Truth be told both of these fellows made some great looking loaves to be admired. There are a lot of great bakers that contribute to this artisan bread site. A very talented bunch. Shiao-Ping also graces the pages with her artistry now and then. It's worth looking at.

Anyway I like this combination very much. Some day I'll get so I can do it as well as Graham and/or Johnny.


jennyloh's picture

My travels are over,  and I'm back....


Soft Cheese Bread from Peter Reinhart's - Artisan Breads Every Day


The Mill Loaf (Adapted)  - Baked last week,  with my 2 mths dormant sourdough


More details in this blog.



jennyloh's picture

Baked 2 different breads, taking up the Hamelman's challenge, one quite successful and the other,  just had too many mistakes.  You will understand what I mean when you look at the pictures.


Cheese Bread with quite a bit of modification to the recipe.  Great oven spring, still learning to score to get the ears.  Not enough cheese,  quite an open crumb,  thin crust,  and 100% sourdough only.   check out the details here.



Flaxseed Bread - too many mistakes here,  and this didn't turn out well at all.  Taste was ok, but it was dense and it didn't have much oven spring.  


1.    This was my 3rd loaf (not counting my other bakes like muffins and flatbread) on a weekend,  and its one of the more difficult ones.   2.    Warm water for the flaxseed.  My water was still warm when I added into the flax seed.  I think that creates the gluey form more. 3.    Use of olive oil to handle the dough, the smell and taste doesn't seem to go together 4.    Brushing with butter - it made the rolls soft,  and not at all what I was hoping for. 5.    Shaping my rolls created a hole in the roll,  should have done better than that. 6.    Not allowing time for the dough to rise properly. 7.    I don't think I baked long enough or I didn't let it cool properly before I kept it,  as it turned moldy after 5 days.  

Well,  I still have  a lot to learn. 


janij's picture

Storing Breads with cheese in them

June 2, 2009 - 6:27pm -- janij

So how do you store bread made with cheese baked inside?  Can you just leave it on the counter?  If so for how long?  Til it just gets moldy?  Or do you have to worry about the cheese going bad?  Or does that not matter since it has been cooked?  Haven't read about this anywhere that I can remember and I am one of those people who errors on the side of caution when food safety is concerned.

LindyD's picture

"Cheese Bread" is a rather drab description of this strongly flavored bread, so I decided to give it the name of the cheese I used.  

The overall formula (which includes a stiff levain) is:

Bread flour - 100%

Water - 60%

Olive oil -  5%

Salt -  1.5%

Yeast -  1% (or half that amount if you plan to retard the bread overnight)

Parmesan cheese -  20%

Half the cheese is cubed and half grated, then added to the dough after it has been mixed to moderate gluten development.

I was unable to retard the dough overnight because of lack of refrigerator space.  

The bread was wonderful lightly toasted and served with a breakfast egg.  It would be a terrific accompaniment with spaghetti, as well as broiled with a bit of garlic, olive oil, sliced tomatoes, and maybe a dash of fresh mozzarella.  

Am betting it will also make excellent croutons and bread crumbs.

This is a great recipe for a special occasion and the quality of the cheese you use will have a major effect on the result.  

Only one caveat:  it will make one very lousy PB&J!

Trishinomaha's picture

King Arthur Gruyere Cheese Bread

May 26, 2008 - 8:43am -- Trishinomaha

Hi all -

I haven't posted lately though I still visit everyday to keep up on what's going on. I just had to share a recipe I made for a family get-together yesterday that was a huge hit. It is the King Arthur recipe for Gruyere Bread. It is essential a yeast bread where the starter is made the night before and the dough the next day. It couldn't have been easier and it is so tasty and is beautiful when it comes out of the oven. I have practiacally none left. Here's the link to the recipe:

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