It was such a beautiful experience to be able to bake this Pull-Apart Bread. This is my entry for January's "We Knead To Bake" bread event. I was inspired by the enthusiastic, creative and passionate bread bakers of "We knead to Bake". I'm so proud to be part of this group.
Now what is "We knead to Bake" you might ask. Aparna Balasubramanian who is the author of the blog - "My Diverse Kitchen" came up with this brilliant idea of getting like minded food bloggers together who needed some kind of motivation to be able to bake bread on a regular basis. So this group was created to share our experiences and enjoy this process of bread making. She gave this group a beautiful and fitting name " We Knead to Bake ".
We are required to bake one bread a month and this month's theme is "Pull-Apart Loaf". You can find more details here. She gave us the recipe and we could use any filling of our choice. I have used Cinnamon, Ginger and chocolate Chip filling. I made this bread keeping in mind what my kids would like as its no point baking something and everybody at home cannot enjoy it. Also I was sure if I just add chocolate chips to this recipe its guaranteed to be an instant hit with the kids. They were as excited as I was and they couldn't wait to pull this bread apart. LOL ! Thankfully I baked two loaves, as I had a smaller loaf pan. I was extremely pleased by the outcome. I was very nervous to begin with but now I'm hoping to bake more of this delightful pull-apart bread. Next time though I want to bake a savory bread for myself and hubby. For the kids I'll bake a sweet version again.
For the Dough
- 1/2 cup warm milk
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 3/4 to 3 cups All purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 tbsp butter soft at room temperature
- 3/4 cup milk (+ 2 tbsp to brush over the bread)
For the Filling
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup Chocolate chips
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- In a bowl dissolve 1 tsp sugar and 2 tsp yeast in 1/2 cup of warm milk. Keep it aside for 5 minutes or until the yeast mixture bubbles up.
- I used a food processor to knead the dough but you could knead it by hand as well. In the food processor bowl , take 2 3/4 cups flour , sugar , butter and pulse a few times to mix. Add the yeast mixture and 3/4 cup milk and knead till you get a soft , smooth and pliable dough. If the dough is sticky sprinkle little flour at a time until you get a non-sticky dough. (I did add a little dough as my dough got a little sticky).
- Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a well oiled bowl, turning the dough so that it is coated with the oil as well. Cover and keep it aside to rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours till it is almost double in volume.
- Lightly dust the work surface with flour. Now deflate the dough and shape it into a square. Next roll it to a 12" X 12" Square. Brush the square with melted butter. Next sprinkle the mixture of brown sugar ,cinnamon and ginger. Now sprinkle your chocolate chips. Use your rolling pin to lightly press your topping onto the dough.
- Use a pizza cutter and slice the dough from top to bottom into 6 even strips.(Don't panic, they do not have to be perfect). Now stack each strip on top of the other one by one with the topping facing upwards. You could use the 1st and the last strip and stack them in the middle so that it looks neater and almost perfect.
- Using a sharp knife cut straight down through the stack into 6 equal stacks.
- Grease and lightly flour a 9" X 5" loaf pan or in my case I have used two 7" x 3" loaf pans. Layer the square slices cut sides down into the loaf pan(s). Cover the loaf pan (along with the slices) with a towel and keep it aside to rise for 1 hour.
- Lightly brush the top of the loaf with some milk. Bake at 350 F (180 C) for about 30-40 minutes until the top is golden brown.