With a main course like Cioppino (fish stew) for our Christmas Eve dinner, I wanted to make sure to have a bread on the table, in case anyone wanted to go dipping. I totally get what Rachael Ray means when she says bread is like an extra utensil at their dinner table … have liquid, will dip. When I spied this recipe for Herbed Pull-Apart Bread, I knew it would be perfect.
The recipe comes from Taste of Home magazine. For some unknown reason, I stopped subscribing to the magazine a few years ago, but rediscovered it this last Spring. To be quite honest, there’s something perfectly comforting about a recipe from Taste of Home; they’re all a bit down-home and old-fashioned – recipes that make you feel good from the inside out. It’s a feeling I quite like.
Although the recipe looks fiddly, it really couldn’t be easier. After all, it starts with refrigerated bread dough. My only sticking point is that the recipe calls for one can of refrigerated bread dough, but given how many circles they have shown in their pictured Christmas tree, it was more than one can. Luckily I had purchased two at the store, because I couldn’t remember how many the recipe needed.
After I rolled up all the pieces and formed the shape on the pan, I showed Nick and asked him what it looked like.
“A Christmas tree!” came the answer. Phew!
When the bread was out of the oven and peacefully cooling on the counter, someone Uncle Tim who shall remain nameless, swiped the top (the star!) of the tree.
Of course now that Christmas has passed, you could make this in any old shape you want … or not. Simple spiraled herbed bread rolls in a basket would be just as pretty and tasty, and a welcome addition to any dinner table. I can think of endless possibilities with this recipe, using it as a base and then mixing and matching the “inside” ingredients … a pepperoni and mozzarella version, perhaps one with sun-dried tomatoes and artichoke hearts, another one with feta cheese and Kalamata olives. This one will definitely be appearing on our table again.
January 5, 2010
This is one of those ingenious, smack-your-forehead, why-didn’t-I-think-of-this ideas. I actually spied this on a photo blog, of all places (I think it was this one). Madeline loves yogurt. I love that Madeline loves yogurt, but if you have a young ‘un, particularly one that is a messy eater (it can’t be just her!) but is fiercely independent and doesn’t want help, you’ll love this. When she’s eating yogurt, she makes an insane mess. You’d be surprised at how many places the yogurt can actually end up. Solution? Poke a straw through the top of the yogurt container without opening it. Yup, even grown-up yogurt. Sucks through like a dream. No muss, no fuss. Isn’t that the best? Life is certainly looking different after using this ingenious little tip.