Here is an absolute beauty of a recipe that is a definite crowd pleaser...not to mention delicious!
Every holidays I develop a couple of monkey bread recipes. With the kids finishing up school for the year this week I thought it would be an opportune time to have a play with a savoury version...and it was a huuuuuge success!
I must admit it is not a recipe to make when you're short on time. It is a little fiddly to stuff each ball of dough but once you find your groove, it's almost meditative - this has to be one of my favourite things about baking!
Perfect to serve when the kids have mates over, or for brunch with loved ones, I really hope you enjoy the recipe! As always if you give it a go and post it on your socials, I'd love to see the results so don't forget to tag me in the post!
Preparation time: 1 hour, plus resting time
Cooking time: 35 minutes
- 1 cup full cream milk, lukewarm
- 1/3 cup water, lukewarm
- 2 tablespoons white caster sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons active dried yeast
- 2 cups plain (all-purpose) flour
- 1 ½ cups white spelt flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon onion salt
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 4 tablespoons (60g) softened unsalted butter, divided in half
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only, plus extra for garnish
- 100g unsalted butter, extra to make burnt butter
- 6 rashers bacon
- 2 cups smoked cheddar, grated
- 1 cup mozzarella, grated
- 2 brown onions, finely chopped
- ¾ cup firmly packed brown sugar
- Combine the warm milk, water, caster sugar and yeast and stir with a fork until the yeast dissolves. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes until the yeast is activated and the mixture becomes foamy.
- Place the flours, salt and onion salt in the bowl of your stand mixer and, using the dough hook, mix on a low speed to combine everything. Add the yeast mixture, egg and half the butter and knead on a medium speed for 5-7 minutes or until the dough is no longer sticky and has a lovely smooth elastic appearance. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover the dough with lightly oiled plastic wrap, and allow the dough rise in a warm, draught-free environment for about an hour, or until doubled in size.
- Grease a 10 inch bundt tin with the remaining half of the butter, using your fingers to make sure you grease every single little part of the tin. Set aside.
- While waiting for the bread to rise, place the 100g unsalted butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat and stir frequently until the milk solids have disappeared and the butter has lightly browned and taken a nutty fragrance. Set aside.
- Heat a frypan over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook on both sides until crisp. Allow to cool and then crumble. Add the cheeses and set aside.
- In the same frypan add the onion pieces and cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally for 4-5 minutes or until translucent but not yet browned. Set aside.
- When the dough has finished rising, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and pat it out into a 25cm x 25cm square. Use a pizza wheel or dough scraper, cut the dough into 36 pieces. Working with the first piece, flatten into the palm of your hand and add a pinch of the bacon and cheese mixture. Gather the edges and pinch the dough to make a ball, dusting the tips of your fingers with flour if needed. Repeat with the remaining dough.
- Add the brown sugar to the onions. Mix well to combine.
- Roll each ball in the browned butter and then in the onion and sugar mixture. Layer the dough balls into the bundt tin so that they fit snugly.
- Cover the bundt tin with another greased plastic wrap and allow to rise again for about 45 minutes or doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 170C (fan forced is the best oven option to use if you have that option) and position a rack in the lower half of the oven.
- Pop the tin into the preheated oven and bake for about 30 - 35 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the sugar is bubbling around the edges. Cool the bread in the pan for 3 minutes before turning out onto a serving plate. Allow to cool for another 10 minutes before garnishing with the extra thyme sprigs and serving.