Blooming bread with cheese and bacon

Blooming bread with cheese and bacon

Slice the bread with criss-cross patterns, stuff grated cheese deep into the incisions, top the cheese with bacon, top the bacon with more cheese, put the bread into the oven and, some 30 minutes later, it has opened up, the cheese has melted and you have your blooming bread.

But the best part is eating the thing — you take a section, pull it out, the melted cheese gets stringy, you pop the piece into your mouth and you so many textures and flavors — toasted bread crust, moist inner bread portion, soft gooey cheese, crisp greasy bacon… It is so much fun especially when you have family (or friends) to share it with. It’s a group kind of food, really. It’s meant to be shared.

Recipe: Blooming bread with cheese and bacon

Ingredients

  • 1 whole loaf of crusty bread (country-style bread is best)
  • 250 g. of cheese (I used Monterey Jack but you can use any cheese that melts well)
  • 150 g. of belly bacon
  • chopped parsley (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  3. Chop the bacon and fry until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
  4. Alternatively, fry the uncut rashers until crisp then crumble.
  5. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  6. Shred the cheese.
  7. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  8. Using a serrated knife, cut through the bread, not all the way through but about two-thirds of the way, making criss-cross patterns. The incisions should ideally be an inch apart.
  9. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  10. Stuff about three-quarters of the cheese into the incisions pushing deep into the bread carefully with your fingers.
  11. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  12. Push the bacon into the cheese distributing the bacon pieces as evenly as you can.
  13. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  14. Top the bacon with the remaining cheese, pushing down whatever falls off.
  15. Sprinkle the parsley over everything.
  16. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  17. Line a baking tray with a large piece of foil. Lay the bread on the foil. Using an even larger piece of foil (fold two pieces together, if necessary), create a tent over the bread. The foil should not touch the bread so that no cheese gets stuck on the foil. Bring the top and bottom pieces of foil together and fold all the edges to seal.
  18. Bake at 400F for 20 minutes.
  19. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  20. Take the tray out of the oven. Remove the top piece of foil.
  21. Return the tray to the oven and bake for another 10 minutes to lightly toast the outside of the bread.
  22. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  23. Transfer the blooming bread to a plate and tear off as much of the foil as you can.
  24. Blooming bread with cheese and bacon
  25. Then, start pulling. And enjoy.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 30 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4

  • Sue

    Hi Connie,
    Mmmmmm, looks really gorgeous and yummy. Pampamilya na tinapay!
    I am so excited because i have the ingredients on hand. Do you think it is a good idea to spread some butter on the incisions before i add the bacon and cheese? Hindi kaya maging nakaka-umay pag may butter pa eh may bacon na nga? Was your bread ‘moistened’ enough by the bacon?

  • http://casaveneracion.com/ Connie Veneracion

    I tried that the first two times I made blooming bread — poured melted butter right inside the incisions before pushing in the cheese. But the bread turned too soft and inserting the cheese was too hard because the portions were falling off.

    Why do you need to moisten the bread? It won’t dry up since there will be steam buildup deep inside during baking. That’s why you have the tent — to keep the moisture in.

  • yayi

    Yumyumyum!! And easy enough to make. The kids are asking for pizza for sometime now. Problem is, good pizza is 2 hours away, and I still don’t have the courage to make a dough. :-) I think I can do this, instead.

  • sue

    oh yeah, steam!!!! oo nga pala!! ay sus, pasensya na.
    thank you again!

  • Crisma

    Easy and beautiful. How the bread is sliced up reminds me of how we often slice the mango halves… and then make them “bloom” too like flowers.

    Thanks again, Connie.

  • http://casaveneracion.com/ Connie Veneracion

    Yes, yes, that’s it exactly — like cutting a mango. :D

  • gracegab

    i’d definitely try this. yummy, easy to fix with ingredients on hand… thanks ms. connie! you’re truly awesome!

  • http://feistycook.com Dexie

    This would be great to make using my homemade bread :D Thanks!

    • http://casaveneracion.com/ Connie Veneracion

      Nice. Very nice. :D

  • Jheng

    excited to try this one! :) yum yum yum!!!!

  • Anne feliciano

    Will this work on turbo? Or steam?

    • http://casaveneracion.com/ Connie Veneracion

      Turbo, yes.

      Steam? Can you brown bread by steaming? :D