One of my most requested recipes of all time!
Earlier this year, I was preparing to have company over to my house, making dinner, cleaning, the works! I was making honey garlic chicken in the slow cooker and thought I would take a crack at making homemade bread and dipping oil for an appetizer. I found inspiration from a few recipes online, got a feel for how the process is done and came up with the recipe listed below.
This is a recipe that I have made several times since that day and it always leaves an impression! I highly recommend it for parties, family gatherings or for any reason you have to make it!
My baby spinach and mozzarella cheese stuffed French bread
For the bread
- 1 package of dry active yeast
- ¼ cup of warm water, 1 cup warm water and 2 tablespoons warm water, separated
- 1 teaspoon sugar plus 1 tablespoon of sugar, separate
- 4 cups of flour (I like to use bread flour but, all-purpose flour should work fine as well)
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 egg white lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon of water
For the inside
- 1-2 cups baby spinach leaves
- 1-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 tablespoons of garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Combine ¼ cup of warm water with the yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar into a large bowl.
- Allow the yeast mixture to sit untouched for at least 5 minutes or until it begins to bubble
- Add only 1 tablespoon of the sugar, 1 teaspoon of salt and the rest of the water
- Mix it all together well, add flour until consistency is perfect
- Mix well and knead the dough ball for about 5 minutes
- Allow the dough ball to rest and rise for 15 to 20 minutes
- Roll the dough ball out on a floured surface
- Once rolled out and flat, evenly disperse the garlic powder over the dough
- Evenly place the spinach leaves and mozzarella cheese on the dough
- Carefully, roll the bread up jelly-roll style and tuck the ends under keeping the insides contained.
- Place entire rolled loaf, seam side down, on a greased baking sheet
- Cut three thin slices into the top of the loaf
- Gently and evenly spread the egg and water mixture over bread loaf
- Bake bread for 30 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown
The spinach and mozzarella cheese stuffed French bread loaf can be rather large. So, you can follow steps 1 through 7 as described. Then rather than proceeding to rolling the whole dough ball out, you can divide the ball in half and make two loaves instead of one large loaf. Then proceed with steps 8 through 15. If you choose this little tweak, remember to evenly divide the cheese, spinach and garlic powder between the two loaves.
This Thanksgiving holiday, my family and I gathered at my parent’s house for good times and good food. I have made this recipe for them in the past and they loved it so much that I thought it would be a welcomed addition to the typical Thanksgiving meal. Of course, I hardly made it through the door before they took the loaf from my hands, and whipped up a dipping oil and herb mixture. Before I knew it, the loaf was half-eaten and dinner would be served within the hour! Needless to say, I barely had a slice or two to bring home with me by the end of the night. Like I said, it’s always a big hit!