This super soft bread loaf filled with Gruyere cheese cubes are really fluffy, I almost tore the dome top apart from the bread when I was removing the very fragile, steaming hot bread from the tin for cooling. Some part of the cheese melted and got stuck to the sides of the tin. But luckily, even with a slight tear, exposing the interior of the steaming bread while cooling down did not do too much damage to the texture of the bread. So the next time when I am adding cheese into the bread dough, I’ll make sure that the cheese are placed towards the center of the bread, where there are ample “cushioning” areas, so that after proofing, the cheese will not end up anywhere near the inner sides of the cake tin.
You might have also noticed that I have used a smaller cake tin instead of the usual bread tin that are taller. I was thinking of a popover bread design, where the bread has a disproportionately huge crown, hoping that it might look interesting. Before it went into the oven for baking, I made sure that the bread had risen above the brim, by at least half the height of the cake tin. After a light misting with water and 30 minutes in the 170C oven, the bread rose further quickly. As you can see from the first photo, the crown was indeed bigger than the bread’s lower body. But alas, the bread was too soft to stand upright for a nice shot. Even when placed back into its baking tin, the whole loaf simply sank in, not that great a sight on photo too.
But all these doesn’t matter, because the bread was delicious. The vegetarian Gruyere cheese I added really gave the bread a lovely savory flavor, I am so glad that I cut down on sugar to let the saltiness of the cheese gets through nicely. I wish I had put in more, not every bite is cheesy though, but not before I figure out how to shape the bread with cheese inside without giving me a ‘meltdown’ incident like this loaf again.
GRUYERE CHEESE CHIA SEED LOAF
200g bread flour 30g oat flour 100g potato, cooked and mashed 1 teaspoon instant yeast 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon raw sugar 1 small egg 50g 40g water 40g cold butter, cubed 2 tablespoons chia seeds 30g Gruyere Cheese**, cubed
** I got my vegetarian Gruyere cheese cultured with non animal rennet from the brand Mainland. I am always looking for yummy vegetarian hard cheese, if you have come across any nice ones, let me know!
In a mixer bowl, combine bread flour, oat flour, yeast, salt and sugar and mix the dry ingredients evenly with a hand whisk. Add cooled mashed potatoes, beaten egg, and water into the mixture and start the mixer on low speed (KA 1) with a dough hook to start kneading. Once the ingredients come into a ball dough, stop the mixer and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
After the dough has rested and the flour has absorb the liquid properly, turn the mixer on again on low speed for about 1 minute, before adding the butter cubes one by one with the mixer running. Knead the dough till window pane stage. To incorporate chia seeds into the dough using the electric mixer, pour in the chia seeds in a steady stream from a spoon, alternating between speed 1 and 2 till the chia seeds are being mixed uniformly into the dough. Alternatively, kneading the chia seeds into the dough manually on a clean worktop. When done, let the dough rest covered in the bowl for 1 hour to expand twice its size.
After an hour, punch the dough down to deflate it and transfer dough to a clean slightly floured worktop. The dough will be sticky, do not add too much, just enough to prevent hands from sticking to it, deflate dough to squeeze out air bubbles trapped inside. Roll dough into a ball and flatten it to an oblong dough, arrange chopped cheese on the dough towards the center and roll up the dough to wrap the cheese within and place the rugby shaped dough inside the bread tin, seam side downwards. Let it proof for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, covered and placed in a draft free place.
I baked this in a 8″ x 3.5″ x 3″ rectangular cake tin to create a popover /muffin top proportion bread. Grease the inner surface well with butter. The dough rose to the brim within 35 minutes, and higher by 1 hour. Baked at 170C for 30 minutes. If this is baked in a regular pull man pan, it will take 45 minutes to reach the brim and can be baked in the oven by 1 hour too. After baking, remove the bread from the tin immediately and allow it to cool completely on a rack before slicing or serving.