Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bloomin' Mushroom & Swiss Sourdough Loaf

So.  I made this loaf of ridiculously cheesy, ridiculously addictive bread the weekend before last.  It was for World Bread Day.  World Bread Day was the 16th.  Ummmmm...the 16th was 8 days ago.  Sigh.  That would be year numero dos that I've "missed" World Bread Day.  What can I say?  I was there in spirit.

Have you seen this bread "around"?  Because I have.  I've been eyeing it from afar for quite some time now. Or some variation of it.  The first time I caught a glimpse of it was at Cathy's place.  Her loaves were inspired by these loaves.  After wiping the drool from my chin I swore I'd be making some.  Like immediately.  I didn't.  And then I noticed this bad boy.  And this one.  Finally I decided I'd had enough of the eating with my eyes.  It was time to eat it with my mouth.
And wouldn't you know, Lea Ann made a loaf recently and posted it the other day.  At the same time I was looking at my "lost" World Bread Day post just hangin' around in draft.  So, while I have no idea why I waited so long to make this the first time around, I know that I will not be waiting long to make it again.  I'm definitely going to be trying a Bacon, Cheddar, and Ranch version.  Can't get the thought of it out of my head.  And maybe a Pizza Bread version with Pepperoni, Mozzarella, and Basil with a little red sauce.  And let's not leave out the sweeter side - a Cinnamon Bun-inspired version will ensue.

Until then, I think you need a loaf of this to munch on during the next football game.  Just sayin'.

Bloomin' Mushroom & Swiss Sourdough Loaf

by Heather Schmitt-González
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Cook Time: 25-35 minutes
Keywords: bake bread snack appetizer bread cheese mushrooms Labor Day Super Bowl tailgating American

Ingredients (serves 4-6)
  • 8 - 12 oz. mushrooms (½ crimini / ½ white button), sliced
  • 1 Tbs. (½ oz.) butter
  • few sprigs fresh thyme
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (16 oz.) loaf sourdough bread (preferabley a boule)
  • 8 oz. Swiss cheese, thinly sliced
  • 4 oz. (1 stick / 8 Tbs. / ½ c.) butter, melted
  • 4 large green onions (~½ c.), thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp. poppy seeds
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350° F. Set two long sheets of foil on a baking sheet, crossed (one side-to-side, one up-and-down).

Add one tablespoon butter to a medium skillet set over medium heat. Once butter melts, add sliced mushrooms. Sauté for 4-5 minutes until they start to release water and get soft. Run your knife through the thyme leaves a few times and throw them into the pan with a big pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Sauté another minute or two, until most of the liquid is evaporated. Set aside.

Add the 4 ounces of butter to a small pan along with green onions and poppy seeds over low heat until melted. Swirl everything around to coat and turn off heat. Set aside.

Next, it's time to slice the loaf of sourdough. Carefully cut through bread in ~1-inch intervals both ways (so that you have a checkerboard pattern), stopping about a ½-inch or so before cutting all the way through. You want your loaf to "bloom". When cutting through in the second direction, grab the outsides of the loaf and sort of hold it together with your other hand- this makes it much easier to cut nicely.

Slide the slices of cheese down between the cuts. Divide your mushroom mixture over the cheese, being sure to tuck it in. Drizzle the melted butter mixture over the whole shebang. Bring the foil up and around your loaf and seal.

Slide into preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes. Unwrap the foil from the loaf (just let it sit underneath it, on the baking tray). Put it back into the oven to bake for another 10-20 minutes or until cheese is melty and the crust gets golden brown on the tips and edges.

Enjoy. Immensely.

adapted from Beantown Baker
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