Back home in Pampanga these breads were always a treat, especially when eaten freshly baked. It has been a while since I last had these and wondered if I can bake a bread that came close to the cheese breads that LA Bakeshop in Angeles City churns out. And they claim theirs are "the original cheese bread."
I have tried several recipes which I have found online but much to my dismay--- the breads do not come close to that of the cheese bread of LA Bakeshop. Hence, I was left to developing one. I had two iterations of the recipe--- one with a use of sourdough starter discard, and the other using commercial yeast. The first recipe came up short--- literally, as there was not much rise in the dough. Post bake, the taste was spot on! The second recipe, well--- the kids approved and that was my go signal.
Milky, creamy and oozing with cheese. I may actually like these breads better than LA Bakeshop's just because I know exactly what ingredients were used.
If you find the color too yellow, you can use White Cheddar Cheese powder.
To activate the yeast:
9 grams of active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
1 teaspoon baker’s sugar
½ cup butter, melted
1 cup whole milk, room temperature
¾ cup baker’s sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 egg, room temperature
3 ½ to 4 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup cheese powder
Oil ( to grease mixing bowl)
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup cheese powder
¼ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup cold butter, diced
In a bowl, combine warm water, active dry yeast, and sugar. Mix to dissolve sugar then side aside for 10-15 minutes to activate.
In a mixing bowl, whisk melted butter and milk to combine.
Add sugar, salt, and egg. Gently whisk until mixture is well incorporated.
Add flour in batches, 1 cup each time up to a total of 3 ½ cups. Fold into the mixture. Repeat until done with the rest of the flour. Set aside the remaining ½ cup of flour for later use, if needed.
Add the cheese powder. Fold until well combined into the flour mixture.
Take the yeast mixture--- by this time it should be foamy and add it to the flour mixture. Fold until well combined. You will now have a sticky dough.
If you feel the dough is too sticky, you may slowly add the remaining ½ cup of flour and fold until well combined.
Transfer to a well-floured counter and knead for at least 5 minutes.
Once done, transfer the dough to a clean bowl greased with oil. Cover with a damp towel, set aside, and let it rise for about an hour, or until double in size.
While waiting for the dough to rise, prepare the streusel (or you can do this ahead and keep in the fridge while making your dough).
In a bowl add flour, powdered sugar, and cheese powder. Mix.
Add the cold, diced butter and mix into the flour mixture with the use of your hands.
Once mixture is well incorporated, use your fingers to rub together until the mixture looks like crumbs. Set aside.
Putting it all together:
Once dough has risen to double its size, transfer it to a well-floured counter.
Divide the dough into 2. Roll the doughs into a log.
Cut and divide the dough logs into 12 equal pieces each.
Using your palms, roll each piece of dough into a ball.
Place the dough ball into the bowl of streusel and coat with as much streusel as you want.
Place dough ball into a lined baking sheet.
Repeat until done with the dough balls. Let the dough balls rest and rise for another 15 to 30 minutes.
Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes, or until cheese streusel is to your desired color.
Pull-apart cheese bread. Or you can bake them a few inches apart to make round shaped cheese breads.