Savor The Earth

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Easy Cheesy Bread September 12, 2010

Filed under: bread,cheese,easy — Austin Frugal Foodie @ 1:36 pm

still loafin' around

A while back I scoured the clearance rack at the Oltorf HEB and scored a number of gems.  Besides crazy clearance prices on herbal supplements, the store was discontinuing a few Middle Eastern food items like Israeli couscous and fine semolina.  I couldn’t pass up a couple a cheap, cheap bags of semolina.  I threw them into the freezer to await whatever project might call for a cup or so.

Last week at the Austin Farmers Market I bought a pair of cheeses from Brazos Valley Cheese, a young tangy parmesan and a pleasantly pliant Montasio.  Here’s an easy quick bread to showcase those quesos and press your semolina into action.


  • 8 ½ ounces (2 cups) organic all-purpose flour
  • 5 ounces (1 cup) fine semolina
  • ¼ cup grated Parmigian0-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder, sieved.  I use Rumford non-GMO, aluminum free.
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda, sieved
  • 1 teaspoon salt.  I like Real Salt.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon paprika or cayenne
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste, ¼ teaspoon or more
  • ½ cup organic or local olive oil.  Check out Texas Olive Ranch.
  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh rosemary.  You too can grow this hardy herb.
  • 1/3 cup minced garlic chives or regular chives.  Only my garlic chives survived this summer of neglect!
  • 1 ½ cups yogurt, local, organic or homemmade.  I make my own yogurt from either Swede Farm Dairy or WaterOak Farms goat milk.  Click for instructions.
  • 2 local eggs.  Austin’s own Vital Farms was just awarded Certified Humane® status from the Humane Farm Animal Care organization.  Local eggs abound in our town.  Check the farmers markets or ask your neighbor.
  • 1 cup olives, drained, pitted and chopped.  I like a mix of black and green.
  • 4 ounces Brazos Valley Montasio cheese, cut into ½” chunks
  • ½ cup finely shredded Brazos Valley parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350°.  Grease up 4 mini-loaf pans (about 3½” X 6″.  I use my fancy Nordic Ware Bundt® design four-cavity pan.) Olive oil or melted butter (check out Natural Grocers sale on Organic Valley 1# butter for $4.49 through September 25) both work.  You can also use one 9″ X 5″ loaf pan.  The larger size takes a little longer to bake and a lot longer to cool off so I prefer the smaller loaves, so we can eat the bread right away!

Combine the dry ingredients, flour through the pepper, in a large bowl, whisking to mix.  Add the cheese chunks and toss with a fork to distribute.  Pour the olive oil into a smaller bowl and stir in the herbs.  Add the remaining ingredients, through the olives, whisking well to blend.

Sprinkle the bottoms of each pan with the shredded parmesan.  For non-fancy pans, save the parmesan for sprinkling onto the tops of the unbaked loaves.  Pour the yogurt mixture onto the dry ingredients and stir gently with a flexible spatula to combine well.  Scoop the batter evenly into each pan.  Top now with the parmesan if your pans are flat-bottomed.

Bake until a bamboo skewer inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean, about 30 minutes for mini-loaves, 55 to 60 minutes for one large loaf.

Let cool in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes before carefully (cheese likes to stick) unmolding the breads onto a rack to finish cooling.  Please let the larger loaf cool almost completely (what torment!) to set the structure before eating.  You can enjoy the smaller loaves now!