This tasty loaf features a soft, tender texture with lots of flavor from cheese and Italian herbs. It's great alongside a fresh green salad and pasta.—Loraine E. Meyer, Bend, Oregon
- 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
- 2 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
- 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon butter, melted
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the cheese, bacon, sour cream, butter, salt, Italian seasoning and 4 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough (dough will be sticky).
- Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
- Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Shape into 15-in.-long loaves. Place on two greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30 minutes.
- With a sharp knife, make five shallow slashes across the top of each loaf. Bake at 425° for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (16 slices each).
Originally published as Bacon-Cheddar French Bread in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2010, p47
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