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Asiago Bread Recipe


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     Asiago Bread

Category   Desserts - Breads
Sub Category   None

3 1/2 - 3 3/4 c. bread flour
1 t sugar
1 pkg regular or quick rise yeast (2 1/4 t.)
1 1/4 very warm water
2 T. olive oil
2 t. rosemary or thyme
1 t salt
1 c. - 1/4 c. diced Asiago, Swiss or other firm cheese

Mix 1 1/2 c. flour, sugar and yeast in large bowl. Add warm water. Beat with wire wisk or electric mixer on low speed 1 min, scraping bowl frequently. COVER TIGHTLY WITH PLASTIC WRAP AND LET STAND ABOUT 1 HOUR OR UNTIL BUBBLY. Stir in oil, rosemary and salt. Stir in enough remaining flour, 1/2 c. at a time, until a soft, smooth dough forms. LET STAND 15 MIN.
Place dough on lightly floured surface. Knead 5-10 min or until dough is smooth and springy. Kneed in 1 cup of cheese. Place dough in large bowl greased with shortening, turning dough to grease all sides. COVER BOWL TIGHTLY WITH PLASTIC WRAP AND LET RISE IN WARM PLACE 45-60 MIN OR UNTIL DOUBLED. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
Lightly grease uninsulated cookie sheet with shortening. Place dough on lightly floured surface. Gently shape into football-shaped loaf, about 12 inches long, by stretching sides of dough downward to make a smooth top. Place loaf with smooth side up on cookie sheet. Coat loaf generously with flour. COVER LOOSELY WITH PLASTIC WRAP AND LET RISE IN WARM PLACE 45-60 MIN OR UNTIL ALMOST DOUBLE. Place a square pan, 8x8x2 inches, on bottom rack of oven; add hot water to pan until about 1/2 inch from the top. Heat oven to 450.
Spray loaf with cool water;sprinkle with flour. Carefully cut 1/2-inch-deep slash lengthwise down center of loaf with sharp serrated knife. Sprinkle 1/4 c. cheese into slash. Bake 10 min. Reduce oven temp to 400. Bake 20 to 25 min longer or until loaf is deep golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack and cool.

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