Bread: Italian Cheese Prosciutto Bread

posted by Mai 04-15-103 7:52 AM

Italian Cheese Prosciutto Bread

1 Package (2 1/2 Teaspoons) Active Dry Yeast
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
2 1/2 Cups All-purpose Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Both Salt And Black Pepper
4 Ounces Prosciutto, Cut Into Small Dice
2 Ounces Provolone, Cut Into Small Dice
3/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Sprinkle the yeast over a cup of warm water and let sit until bubbly, about 5 minutes. Add the oil, flour, salt and pepper, and mix with a wooden spoon until a workable dough has been formed. Knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes until you have created a smooth dough. If the dough seems sticky as you are kneading it, add a little more flour. Oil a large bowl twice the size of the bread, and place the dough in the bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it rise in a warm spot until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours.

Oil a baking sheet, and place the dough in the center. Flatten the dough with your hands, and spread the meat and cheese over the top. Fold the dough over to cover the meat and cheese, and then flatten and fold the dough over a few times with your hands to distribute the ingredients throughout the bread.

To shape, either form the dough into a large oval shape, or cut the dough into two pieces, roll each into a 24 inch rope, and loosely twist the ropes together, sealing the ends together so you have one large ring. Cover with plastic wrap once more, and let sit to rise until doubled once more, about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bake the bread for 30 minutes, or until it is a nice golden brown in color. Cool on a wire rack, and then slice when still slightly warm.

Variation: You can brush the bread with a glaze of 1 egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon of water to give the bread a shiny surface if you desire.

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