Hot bread fresh from the oven seems to be difficult and time-consuming, but, with the right recipe, it’s really not difficult, and it takes less time than you might think. The initial mixing takes just a few minutes, and then the bread requires just a few more minutes here and there to finish. If you’re called away during the process, just cover the dough well and refrigerate until you have a bit more time to spare. After removing it from the refrigerator, let it rest for about half an hour at room temperature before you put it in the oven.
This bread uses the Short Cut Mixer method, which was developed by the Red Star Yeast Home Service Department back in the 1960s, according to the Farm Journal cookbook editor Nell B. Nichols in Homemade Bread (NY:Doubleday and Company, 1969.)
The recipe takes a little over 2 hours and makes one large loaf or two small ones.
Easy Cheese and Onion Bread
- 3 cups white, unbleached or whole wheat flour, more if needed
- 1 tablespoon baking yeast, active dry or fast rising
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons sugar, honey or other sweetener
- 1 cup warm milk, 115 to 125 degrees F / 46 to 51 C
- 1 egg, beaten, edited by Nell B. Nichols
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- ½ cup onions, chives or green onions, chopped
Put 1 cup of the flour in your mixing bowl. Stir in the yeast, salt and sugar. Pour in the warm milk and mix well for three or four minutes on medium. Let stand for about 10 minutes until bubbly.
Add the egg and oil, then the onion and cheese, then the rest of the flour until the dough holds together and is only a bit sticky. Knead for three or four minutes with your mixer’s dough hook or by hand on the counter. Place dough into an oiled bowl. Cover with a damp towel and let it rest for about half an hour.
Knead for a few minutes by hand, then shape your savory dough into one large loaf or two small loaves and put into a loaf pan or onto a baking tray. Let it rise until double, about 45 minutes.
Bake at 350 for 25 to 35 minutes until the crust is golden and the bottom sounds hollow when you tap on it.
Easy Cheese and Onion Bread goes well with pasta and sauce (such as Low fat Microwave Pasta Alfredo) and a salad. This loaf can be served at any meal. It makes great toast for sandwiches, and even good savory French toast. It makes a nice side dish for an elegant dinner or an outdoor barbecue.