This one is by request. A while back my wife found a recipe on Pinterest, so we stole it and made it ours. You can’t have it back, Pinterest.
Actually, there have been a lot of recipes like that, but this one is for a Cheesy Pull Apart Loaf.
It is an amazingly simple recipe and the resulting dish is tasty and makes a good show piece.
You take a large bread loaf, whatever kind of bread you prefer, and begin by slicing it up. We just found a fairly large, round loaf with a nice crust on it (a.k.a. Rustic), at our local grocery store.
I suggest using bread that has a harder crust or bread that is somewhat dense and firm, as parts of this process may be difficult with a softer bread. Don’t let me stop you from experimenting, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Take that same loaf and begin slicing a grid pattern in the bread. I found it easiest to cut all of my lines in one direction and then turn the loaf to do the intersecting lines. You don’t want to cut all of the way through; only cut about three-quarters of the way into the bread. The squares should be between an inch and a centimeter on each side, making nice little cubes of easily removable bread.
If you have trouble keeping your lines straight, don’t worry. Some pieces of bread may work lose in the process, but leave them in and the melting cheese later on should keep them in place.
Then, take a block of your favorite cheese, and cut it into thin slices. The shape and length don’t matter as much as long as the pieces are thin.
Another suggestion, choose a cheese that melts well. Cheddars, Gruyère, or Emmental (Swiss), among others, will melt well make their way into all of the crevices of the bread; while some cheeses like Mozarella, or Provolone are going to become stringy and stay right where you put them.
Take the thinly sliced cheese and begin to place pieces down into the cracks between the squares. For mine, I put longer pieces laying long way in one direction and then stuck narrower pieces upright in the spaces between rows. This allowed the cheese to spread out evenly.
Ours was topped with a mixture of melted butter, onions, garlic, rosemary and poppy seeds; but you can really experiment here. The melted butter makes a nice coating, but you can top it however you want. I’m thinking bacon next time, and if anyone tries that let me know how it works out.
Line a baking sheet with tin foil to avoid a mess. Bake the whole thing at about 350 degrees, for around ten to fifteen minutes. If you are making it ahead, it does reheat well.
Sadly, I have only one picture from my trial of this recipe. It was a while ago, but I will post it here as a record of my exploits.
I really had fun making this one, and I hope you will give it a spin.
1 Large Rustic Bread Loaf
1/4 cup chopped green or white onions
1/4 cup (4 Tbsp) butter, melted
12 oz. Cheese, e.g. Cheddar or Monterrey Jack, thinly sliced
Garlic, Rosemary, or Other Herbs, to taste
Slice loaf in grid pattern with 1 cm to 1 in. squares.
Insert cheese slices into gaps between squares.
Top with melted butter and herb mixture.
Line baking sheet with tin foil.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.