Jalapeno Cheddar Pull-apart Beer Bread

I am quite the active yeast novice. Which sounds gross.

But I just haven’t yet mastered the art of working with yeast doughs. They end up being sticky messes that I can’t control. And I end up saying choice words and throwing things around the kitchen. (Truth. Ask my husband.)

These breads intimidate me with their mystical rise and we never get to develop our relationship because I’m too scared and I’ve been beaten too many times. But this bread. This bread. I had to try. How could one not?

And what happened? My dough was a sticky mess. I said some choice words and banged some stuff around the kitchen. But I didn’t give up. I covered my dough back up and put it in the refrigerator to work its magic overnight. Well, magic didn’t happen. But enough of a spark was there that my bread still puffed up nicely in the oven. And it was still tasty. Was it tender and flaky and perfect like I want it to be? Yeah, right. But we’ll get there. Was it worth it? Oh, yes.

Jalapeno Cheddar Pull-apart Beer Bread

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Dough

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup plus 1/3 cup beer divided

2 cups plus 1/2 and 1/3 cup flour, divided

2 tablespoons sugar

2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast

1 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs, room temperature

Heat the butter and the first 1/4 cup of beer together in a small saucepan until the butter has melted. Add the remaining 1/3 cup of beer and set aside to cool.

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, blend together the first 2 cups of flour with the sugar, yeast, and salt. On the lowest setting, mix in the butter and beer mixture until it is just incorporated. Add eggs on at a time, then add the remaining flour. Switch to the dough hook and knead the dough for 3 or 4 minutes. Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl and cover loosely with a towel or plastic wrap. Let the dough rise until doubled, about an hour.

Filling

3 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon mustard

3 oz cream cheese

1 1/2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon salt

fresh ground peppper

1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded

2 jalapenos, diced

Melt the butter, mustard, and cream cheese together in the small saucepan. Take off of the heat and whisk in the seasonings.

Assembly!

Prepare your loaf pan by greasing it with method of choice. Roll out your dough on a well floured surface to approximately a 20×12 inch rectangle. Brush your filling all over the dough. Cut your dough (I use a pizza cutter) lengthwise into five 4×12 inch strips. Sprinkle one strip with approximately 1/4 cup of cheese and diced jalapenos. Place another strip on top and sprinkle with another 1/4 cup of cheese and jalapenos. Repeat until all the dough strips, cheese and jalapenos have been used.

With a serrated knife, very gently cut the stack of strips in 6 two-inch segments. (I find it easiest to cut the entire strip in half, then cut the two halves into thirds.) Stand the loaf pan up on its short end so it stands vertical, and stack all of your segments on top of each other. Cover loosely with saran wrap or towel and let rise for another 30-45 minutes.

Cook!

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. After its final rise, cook for 25-35 minutes. Wait at least 5 minutes for it to cool, then pull that deliciousness apart and enjoy!

See Smitten Kitchen for another look at assembly and baking instructions.

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