Savory Monkey Bread
We have to qualify this monkey bread recipe with savory, because some people think of monkey bread as a sweet treat. This one is fun to make, especially for children, so have the young’uns join in under your supervision.
Makes one loaf
3 1/2 cups of bread flour
1 1/3 cups of butter, divided in 1 cup solid and 1/3 cup melted
4 eggs and 1 egg yolk
1/2 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup of warm water
1 tbs. of dry active yeast
1 tbs. of garlic powder
1 tbs. of sugar
1 tsp. of dried basil
1/2 tsp. of dried oregano
Mix the warm water with the yeast and sugar in a bowl. Let sit for 10 minutes until it’s bubbled up and activated.
Put the flour in the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment. Mix the 4 eggs and 1 egg yolk into the yeast mixture, then add to the flour. Combine with the dough hook on speed 1 until the flour has absorbed the liquids. This mixture will be dry, so as it combines, add the solid 1 cup of butter 1 tablespoon at a time to make it moist and tacky. Turn the mixer to speed 2 and continue mixing for 8 minutes.
Transfer the dough from the mixer bowl to a cutting board and gently shape it into a ball. Put the dough ball back into the mixing bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and place the bowl in a warm area, like in the oven with the oven light on. Leave alone for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until it has doubled in size.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan with all the herbs, seasoning, and garlic over low heat. Coat the bottom and sides of a large loaf pan, or whatever you have laying around with tall sides, with the butter but not all of it – save some to layer the dough. Sprinkle roughly 1/3 of the Parmesan cheese on the bottom of the pan.
Remove the dough from the bowl and, on a cutting board, cut the dough into 1″-strips. Cut these strips in turn into cubes, essentially.
Roll these mini lumps into smooth balls, and place a layer of balls in the bottom of the pan. Spread with some herb butter, and sprinkle with cheese.
Continue layering with dough, butter, and cheese, just 2 layers deep so you have room for the dough to proof once more.
Cover with plastic wrap and let raise in the oven with the oven light on until it has doubled in size, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Remove from the oven and take off the plastic wrap, and preheat the oven 350 degrees F. Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown, depending on the type of pan you use.
Let cool slightly before inverting the pan. Pull apart and enjoy