Difficulty: Easy

This weekend's request from Chris was bread. Now this man loves bread. His mom makes homemade bread a lot, and let me say, it's fantastic. During my first visit to their house, she made at least 3 different types. Before meeting her, I was never into making bread. I was perfectly happy with buying artisan rolls from the local bakery. Was it the cheapest route? No, but it was the easiest in my book. However, after we returned from the Jersey Shore, Chris made the request for one of his mom's bread recipes. I can honestly say I didn't know what to do. Luckily, after a few phone calls her way, I managed to create 2 loaves of bread...from scratch. They weren't the greatest, but for my first try, I was pretty happy. But now, I've gotten to where I love making bread. My secret? The bread maker. I don't use it to actually bake the bread, just make the dough. It is unbelievably easy and saves you all kinds of trouble when it comes to yeast and water temp and all the important stuff. More on my love of the bread maker to come, for now, here's the recipe.

5/8 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. water
1 1/2 tsp. oil
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar
2 1/2 c. bread flour
1 c. rye flour
1 c. grated cheddar cheese
3 tsp. yeast

Please note that this recipe uses a bread maker, I do not make the dough by hand. Get your bread maker out and set to dough only setting. Then pour each ingredient in order, with the exception of the cheese, into the machine's bowl. Press start. This usually takes around one hour twenty minutes, but depends on the machine. When dough is finished, pour out onto well floured surface with well floured hands. Knead dough gently for two minutes. Roll out dough to approximately the size of a rectangular cookie sheet. Don't make it longer than the sheet, because you will be baking the loaf on the sheet. Once it is rolled out, spread the cheddar cheese, leaving one inch around all sides. This prevents the cheese from oozing out while baking. Roll up the loaf carefully and seal the edges with water if you like. Tuck both ends under to ensure minimal leakage. Transfer loaf to parchment paper covered cookie sheet. Spray a touch of cooking spray on the top of the loaf and bake in a 375 degree oven for 25-30 minutes. After you remove from the oven, let it cool for AT LEAST 5 minutes before cutting. This will prevent the bread from sinking while cutting.

I know that bread can be tricky, so if you have any questions at all regarding this recipe, please let me know!

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