In the summer I live in the Chicago area but I spend seven months of the year in Fort Myers, FL. Down here I greatly miss the great Asiago bread made by Panera (formerly St Louis bread company.) Nobody makes it in this area, so I thought I would give it a try. I was sort of on my own, because I couldn't find a recipe.
I chopped up 2 1/2 oz. of the cheese in a mini blender. I used three cups of flour and followed exactly Floyd's lesson number five for making french bread. I used 1/2 tsp. of dry yeast (bulk from Costco which I keep in the freezer) in the starter and 1/2 tsp. more in the mix. I made the wettest batch I have tried so far. It almost poured like a cake batter.
I didn't put the cheese in the mixer, I incorporated it by spreading some over the surfaces during folding. I put the loaf in a long french bread pan like the one sold by King Arthur for $20.00, but which I bought at a kitchen store in a Tanger outlet mall for $3.00.
When I shaped the roll it was about 2" in diameter. After a 60 min. rise and with the jump, it was over 5" in diameter. With a 500 start, then 450 oven it was done in 15 minutes. It was very light with large holes and a thin crisp crust. Perfect.
The flavor was very good. Next time I will use perhaps another ounce of the cheese to get a little sharper flavor.
That Asiago Cheese bread is my favorite at Panera's! Thanks for sharing the details of your homemade loaf. IMO the more asiago the better.
I always add Parmesan to my cheese bread, along with the Asiago. qahtan
qahtan..you are a very talented baker..I saw an old post with a Wedding cake and your breads always look awesome!
Can you tell me, when do you top the rolls with the cheese to get
that great crispy, gooey look? Thanks
Thank you for the compliment;-)))
With cheese topping I mix some cheddar grated, along with the asiago and add it on the tops just before they go in the oven....
The cheddar improves the look, well, plus a bit of flavour. Did you see the Guinness and walnut loaf that's very nice,,,,,, qahtan
Hmmmmm..Looks awesome...would you post the recipe?