Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Ooey, gooey, melty cheese.  Salty bacon.

Briny olives and sweet sundried tomatoes.  The earthy sharp scent of oregano and basil.

Pillowy soft nuggets of buttery bread, gently coaxed off a warm loaf.  Heaven.

My friends, I promise you that I’m not spouting hyperbole when I say that this is the best thing I have ever baked. Ever.  Bar none.  If I had eight hungry friends at our house every weekend (as opposed to every second weekend), this would easily become my pièce de resistance; that recipe I was known for, the one that my near and dear would wax poetic over while thwarted lovers thrashed in the night, dreaming of what might have been.  Yes, this bread is THAT GOOD.

I think this bread might cure cancer.  There’s no empirical evidence yet, but let’s just wait and see.

If this bread was a band, I would don a mini-skirt and become a groupie with purple hair and a drooling over bite.

This is Obama-bread .  It is the cure to all things, and it bridges all gaps (which I can totally say, because I’m Canadian, eh. We’ll let you fight it out south of the border).

If this bread was a movie star it would be George Clooney.  We would all swoon against our wills, with tepid mutterings about how this can’t possibly be a healthy relationship, as we sidle just a little bit closer and lean in nice and deep.

PS – this bread loves a tight V-neck sweater.

I think it’s official, and I am ready to ask you, plaintively, that if you just decide to make one thing from our site, let it be this.  If there is even one recipe that compels you beyond all others, tab away from it and focus on this.  I promise you, this is the bread of champions.  This is the bread that wins hearts and steels  the souls of the damned.  This is the bread that I would make each and every day for the rest of my life if I didn’t have such a desperate fear of gout.  In short, this is THE BREAD.  Make this bread.  Share this bread.  Eat this bread.

Bread.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Makes 1 large loaf, perfect for sharing

  • 1 tbsp active dry yeast
  • 12 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 4 tsp sugar
  • 1.5 cups warm water
  • 1 egg
  • 3.5 cups flour
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp dried oregano, divided
  • 2.5 tsp dried basil, divided
  • 1 tsp garlic powder *
  • 8-10 oil packed sundried tomatoes (1/3 cup chopped) **
  • 12-16 kalamata olives (1/3 cup chopped)
  • 1 bunch green onions, about 6 (1 cup chopped and loosely packed)
  • 1/2 lb bacon
  • 1.5 cups dry grated parmesan cheese ***
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tub (200 g or 36 pieces) mini bocconcini ****

*If you have garlic salt rather than garlic powder, reduce the salt in the dough by 1/4 tsp.

** If you do not have oil packed sundried tomatoes, rehydrate them by putting the halves in a small bowl and adding just enough boiling water to cover them.  Let the tomatoes sit for 15-20 minutes, or until they are tender.

*** This is one of those times when it is absolutely okay to buy the can of pre-grated parmesan cheese from the dry goods section of your grocery store.  However, if you can get “fresh” pre-grated parmesan, which is nice and crumbly but without the whole processed foods embarrassment, that is even better.  What you don’t want to do is grate the fresh cheese yourself because, frankly, that’s a waste of money.  Your lovely Parmigiana Reggiano is perfect for adorning pasta and adding rich, salty flair to salads and flatbreads.  However, the longer strings of grated parmesan will not adhere properly to the dough balls, nor will they firm up in a respectable way without browning and eventually burning.

**** No mini bocconcini?  You can use fresh mozzarella cut into cubes about the size of your thumb.  Huh.  That’s assuming that your thumb is the same size as the thumb on my potato picking paws.  If you have piano fingers, opt for just slightly larger than a nickle.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Melt five (5) tbsp of butter and let it cool until it is just warm to the touch.  I do this by putting the butter in my microwave for 35 seconds, stirring to melt any bits that are still firm, and giving it just a minute or two to cool.  In a medium sized bowl spoon in the sugar and yeast.  Pour the warm (not hot) water over top and add the egg.  Whisk this together until it is combined and slightly frothy before whisking in the butter.  Let the mixture stand.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

After about 5-7 minutes the yeast mixture should be frothy and have a fairly thick (about 1/2 inch) pale brown foam on top.  Yay yeast!  If this hasn’t happened, unfortunately it means that your yeast is no longer active (either due to age or poor storage) and you will need to start again with fresh yeast.

Put the flour and salt into a large bowl along with one (1) tablespoon of oregano and one and a half (1.5) teaspoons of dried basil. Pour the buttery yeast mixture over top.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Stir until it comes together as a dough and then knead the ball in the bowl for about a minute.  Basically you just want to turn it over and around a few times, activating the gluten, and then let it rest.  Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and put it in a warm and draft free spot to rise for about an hour and a half.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Slice each rasher of bacon in half and then dice into chunks.  Put the bacon into a non-stick skillet over medium heat and fry the bacon until it is cooked through, slightly browned, and the fat is neatly rendered out.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Drain the fat from the bacon and strain the grease straight into a small bowl.  Melt the remaining seven (7) tablespoons of butter into the bacon fat.

Put the reserved bacon into a second bowl.  Pit the kalamata olives and give them a good chop.  Do the same with the sundried tomatoes and green onions.  Stir these fine friends together.

In a third bowl place the parmesan cheese, chili powder, garlic powder, remaining one (1) tablespoon of oregano and one (1) teaspoon of basil.  Stir this together.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

When the dough has doubled in size it is ready to use.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and start rolling it into a long cylinder.  Cut the roll of dough into quarters, and cut each quarter into slices until you have 36 pieces.  If math is not your strong suit, that means making 8 cuts into each for a total of 9 pieces per quarter.  Or cut more, I’m not one to judge.  Just be sure that you have an equal ratio of dough slices to bocconcini balls, because can you imagine being the person to get the ONE DOUGH BALL that was left behind?  If I was your friend, I would never forgive you.  Seriously.  Withholding cheese from me may mean a grudge that could never be overcome.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Pat each slice into a sort of flat, round shape.  Tuck one mini bocconcini into the center of each one and pinch the dough around it to make a seal.  Roll the ball between your palms a few times to make it nice and round.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Sprinkle one quarter (1/4) of the bacon and olive mixture into the bottom of a large, ungreased bundt pan.  Take a dough ball and roll it in the butter to get it nice and lubed up before rolling it around in the spiced cheese mixture.  Put the sauced and spiced ball into the bottom of your pan and repeat with another eight balls (spaced about 1/4″ apart) or until the bottom of the ring is just covered.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Sprinkle some of the bacon and olive mixture over top.  Repeat this process with the remaining dough, sprinkling the savoury mixture on top every 10-12 balls or so.  In terms of layering, this should end up being:

  1. bacon/tomato/olives/green onion
  2. first layer dough balls
  3. bacon/tomato/olives/green onion
  4. second layer dough balls
  5. bacon/tomato/olives/green onion
  6. third layer dough balls

Drizzle any remaining butter mixture on top (there should be about a tablespoon), disperse the last of your bacon mixture, and sprinkle any remaining parmesan on the whole lot (there should be a scant 1/4 cup).

Put a tea towel on top of the bundt pan and let the bread sit in a warm, draft free spot for an hour, or until it has almost doubled in size.  You will be able to see gaping cracks in the cheese coating of each ball, and the dough should have risen almost up to the top of your pan.

While the bread is rising, preheat your oven to 350ºF.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Tuck the bread into the center of your oven for approximately 35-40 minutes, or until the top is browned and firm.  If the bread is browning too quickly but the dough still feels spongy when you lightly press down on it, loosely tent the pan with foil and allow it to continue cooking.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Turn the pan out onto a serving dish while it is still warm, and serve your buttery, decadent, cheesy bread.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Oh yeah.  That’s what I’m talking about.  Golden brown and utterly delicious.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

When the bread is warm you can pull it apart into the individual morsels, each one filled with a rich, oozing center of molten cheese.  Does life even get any better than that?

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

Five minutes into the Superbowl, and the bread already looked like this.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts

We were so full of carby goodness and dairy fat that frankly I was beyond caring who won or lost, I just wanted more cheesy Mediterranean pull apart bread.

This bread was a home run.  Or a TKO, winning shot, or whatever other kind of sports analogy it takes to mean that hungry fans are in your home and they are about to be pleased beyond their wildest dreams.  Because, people, if you think of this bread as the Olympics of pub-grub, that’s just what I bring.

Bocconcini Stuffed Mediterranean Bacon Pull Aparts
  • http://www.journeykitchen.blogspot.com Umme Kulsum

    NO TINA Noooooooooo I was just making my mind for low carb diet for few weeks.
    I HATE YOU!
    With that picture and writeup, I might as well go to hell to make it.

    DELICIOUS!!!

  • http://www.journeykitchen.blogspot.com Umme Kulsum

    now That I’m over hating you, a couple of questions.

    1. We Don’t have bacon. WE can’t get bacon. Not even Beef bacon. What should I susbtitute it for?
    2. Can we use fresh parmesan, grate it down in a food processor and use? Because, I have
    a good amount of it lying around, and I can’t (can) buy any more parmesan without ( Yes, I am still asking after all that writing)

  • Erica

    I was a third of the way through reading this when I scrolled down to do the ingredient inventory – I have bacon in the house, sundried tomatoes, all the dough ingredients, but… CURSES! No green onions, olives, or bocconcini. Crud. This is the kind of food that should just appear fully formed in my house, not require getting dressed and heading out for groceries. One day soon, all of the ingredients will exist in my house at the same time. Sigh. Next time, oh pizza bread of wonder and joy. Next time.

  • http://www.aperfectversionofmyself.wordpress.com Tara

    I have been on a diet for more than a year (probably, it’s not a diet anymore but I digress) and normally come here to drool over the recipes and curse the day I decided to try and lose weight.

    This bread looks like the opposite of what I SHOULD be eating, but I don’t care. I’m making it this weekend to take to a Winter Olympics party and I’m going to defend my right to eat it till I’m sick.

    My waistband doesn’t thank you, but I’m sure my mouth will.

  • cayenne

    Cheese, bacon, olives & bread. This obviously a perfect food. Add a glass of wine & that’s my idea of heaven.

    Since I’m a) Canuck, & b) an Olympics addict, I was planning to do my bakey stuff this weekend with luge or biathlon or whatever plays (read: blares) in the background. This is now top of the list to bake & if I do it on Saturday, I can couch-potato Sunday away with ski jumping, women’s hockey, figure skating, and the bread. I’m getting all squee-ish thinking of how perfect a day it is.

  • http://www.somethingshinyblog.com Kelly

    *faints* Ok, so I chuckled at your seeming hyperbole ’cause I’ve been there myself, overwhelmed by some heavenly food. But… I kept reading… and saw the pictures… and fainted. I’m pretty sure I’d be a groupie, too, if this bread were a band. Must. Make.

  • Stewart

    First of all, thank you for all of your wonderful recipes. You’ve converted me from someone who makes frozen french fries for dinner into someone who snacks on zucchini medallions. Regularly. I’ve made quite a few of your recipes now (I made samosas! AWESOME samosas!), and all of them have become household favourites. I’m a big fan.

    I’m still not really experienced with baking, but this makes me want to give it a try. But, further to the question about finding a bacon substitute, can you suggest an alternative for vegetarians? I’ve found veggie bacon in the past, but it’s a sad, pale shadow of what I remember real bacon tasting like, and I don’t know how well it would work here.

  • Stewart

    PS. Thanks for being so vegetarian-friendly in general! Much appreciated!

  • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

    Alright guys, so my advice about a bacon substitute: don’t use it. Believe me, this bread has flavor to spare and the cheese, olives and tomato are bold enough that if you make this without bacon, that’s A-OK. What you WOULD want to do is increase the melted butter that you’re rolling the balls in by about 2 tsp, and use a 50:50 split of salted to unsalted butter if you can. The bacon fat adds flavor as well as extra seasoning with the salt and that’s what you would want to target. I have tried bacon substitutes in the past (everything from thick, bland veggie bacon to tamari flavored tempeh bacon, which was the worst) and frankly I feel that they do more harm than good. I actually meant to put that suggestion in the recipe so thank you for the reminder!!

    Kulsum – I tried a no carb diet once. I lasted two days. Now then, let’s talk about the parm. Yes, you can use freshly grated parmesan but it takes a bit more prep time (which you will have as the dough rises). Shred the parm as finely as possible and then spread it out in a thin layer on a board or baking sheet. Leave this out on your counter, uncovered, for about 2 hours. Parmigiana has a relatively low moisture content to begin with, but the drying process will help you buckets. When it feels dry and somewhat brittle to the touch, give it a quick whiz (just a few pulses) in the food processor until it has the texture of coarse sand. If you try this recipe, let me know! You did such a great looking job on the halloumi pull aparts :)

    Erica – It makes me giggle that you called this pizza bread, because while we were eating it we had a big bowl of piping hot pizza dip on the table next to us with a batch of crispy black olive grissini! I hear you on the Grocery Shopping Is More Effort Than I Can Bear front. This week in particular I have been whittling down our pantry staples. Mike has girded himself quite well against the onslaught of canned beans, but sometimes the shop just isn’t in me either.

    Tara – Ooh, this is such a perfect bread for sharing! Your friends will thank you for it, even if your waist line does not. Mmm….and if you make it RIGHT before you go over, wrap it in clean tea towels and get it there while it’s still nice and warm? Nobody will care what’s on TV. It’s all about the bread. PS – I don’t know if I’ve told you this, but I was reading your blog again the other day. You look fabulous and what you’ve accomplished is unbelievable.

    Cayenne – a woman after my own heart. Any day that starts with bacon and olives before slipping into wine is a perfect day in my book as well!

    Kelly – aw, shucks. Yup. If this bread started selling T-shirts I would totally wear them to work every day. Thanks for stopping by the site!!!

    Stewart – You officially made my day. No, possibly my week. No jokes, all seriosity. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment and let us know! I have a few more vegetarian recipes in the pipeline that I haven’t got around to posting yet (including my favorite – quick weeknight chana masala!) but thank you for officially lighting a fire under my rump to do so! Again, as far as the bacon goes you can just leave it out and sub in some salted butter for part (not all) of the unsalted. I promise that you don’t need to be an experienced baker to make this bread (it’s dead easy and requires little kneading) so I hope you’ll give it a shot!! Thanks again for the kind words :)

  • http://foodhappens.blogspot.com lo

    Pretty hard to follow all of that up… but the truth is, I just wanted to chime in to say: Tina, you rock! And thanks for sharing. I’m apparently behind in my reading — but it’s awesome to come back around and see a recipe like this waiting for me… all warm and crusty and bready. It’s perfect, really. AndImeanit.

  • http://colette2008.blogspot.com Colette

    I’m in the process of making this, but I have a question – where does the garlic powder go? I see it in the ingredient list, but not in the recipe.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Colette – you know, my father does this ‘thing’, which is *probably* unintentional. Every time he makes something fabulous that I really, really like, he’ll give me his unofficial recipe/technique, but forget *one* little thing….sometimes a key ingredient, other times (thankfully) not. Sigh. Apparently I am my father’s daughter.

      The garlic powder gets mixed in with the cheese/chili/herb coating that the buttered balls are rolled in. I have updated the post :)

      How excited am I that you’re making these? Please let us know how they turn out!!

      • http://colette2008.blogspot.com Colette

        I can relate – my mom’s recipes consist of things like “add enough flour”. Um, how much is that?

        I figured the garlic powder either mixed with the cheese or the flour – I mixed it with the flour. Next time I’ll make them properly. :)

        I really enjoyed the bread. I had a lot of Parmesan cheese left (probably because I guessed instead of, you know, measuring) so I poured it all on top – and that was too much, so I won’t do that again.

        Overall, they were a hit. Of course, how could anything that mixes fresh bread, garlic, and melted cheese not be wonderful?

        • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

          Colette – I’m glad that despite everything they turned out! I really coated the bread in parm when they were rolled (perhaps ‘encased’ is a better choice of word than coated, considering how liberal I am with cheese) which helps with the taste of the bread as well as ensuring less left at the end. And you’re right – freshly baked bread and melty cheese make everything right in the world.

  • Alison

    Have you ever taken this to someone else’s place? How would you heat it up if you did?

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Alison – I’ve brought similar bread to other people’s houses (the garlic and halloumi pull aparts). I don’t bake the bread too early, and time it so that the bread comes out of the oven right before I’m about to leave. Keep it in the pan and swaddle the whole thing with layered tea towels (about 2 layers). Sometimes I’ll even put the mummified bread into a cardboard box and close the lid, which will cause some steam to form (not always a bad thing for bread, particularly not this one which is soft anyway) but that’s okay if you aren’t going too far. This will keep the bread warm, albeit not piping hot, for a 20-30 minute car ride.

      The other thing that you can do is partially bake the bread for about 30 minutes and then put it in the oven at your host’s house for another 10 to finish the cooking. After 30 minutes you won’t be getting much more rise out of the loaf. Again, you would want to do this right before you left. The tricky part is that the cheese would have already melted. Once cheese is melted and cooled, there is really no going back to that lovely ooey-gooey former self.

      If you just wanted the bread to warm through (and are okay with the lack of soft cheesy glory) you can bake it in the morning and reheat it, tented loosely with tin foil, in a preheated 350F oven for about 10 minutes, or until it’s warm through. This will cause the bread to dry out a bit, but not too significantly (as long as it isn’t day old, in which case…just don’t).

      Good luck!

  • http://www.somethingshinyblog.com Kelly

    So. I made this on Saturday night. Honestly, if we hadn’t already started cooking the steaks and making the rest of the dinner, we would have been happy just having this for dinner. My husband and I had another couple over for dinner and it was all we could do to not completely fill up on this bread before dinner. It’s seriously amazing.

    Like one of the other commenters, I wondered about the garlic powder but it didn’t matter. It was still incredible. I’m going to blog about it in a day or so. I’ll be linking to your site, if you don’t mind.

    THANK YOU (I think) for this recipe. It’ll be the death of me, but what a way to go…

  • http://tuppercooks.blogspot.com/ Tupper Cooks

    Wicked-simply wicked! Gotta try it-like tonight-I’ll be a hero if I do………

  • http://www.bridejunk.com Mandy

    This popped up on my foodgawker feed and I HAD to try it! I made it this evening and we just dug in for dinner! It was incredible! We couldn’t finish the whole thing though, but I’m sure it’ll still be delicious tomorrow, even if the cheese will never be the same ooey gooey goodness that it was!

    Thanks for this!

  • http://spinningninny.blogspot.com Sarah

    This is an AMAZING recipe. I CANNOT wait to make it this weekend!

  • Cindy A.

    I just set my dough aside to rise. It is a lot wetter than your dough looks in the picture, even after adding about 3TB extra flour. Although fairly new to bread-baking I’m not afraid of high hydration doughs, I’m just afraid I made a mistake in following the recipe. Hopefully, you’ll happen to see this and reply. I’ll report back, either way.

    Thanks

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Cindy – This is a moist and slightly sticky dough (water + egg and butter) which is one of the reasons that it stays really tender and light. The texture is closer to a no-knead than a smooth and elastic dough ball that you would be used to for baguettes or even sandwich bread. A bit sticky is not a problem as long as you can turn it out and manipulate the dough on a lightly floured surface. If it doesn’t have body though and it still seems more like a yeasted batter than a dough, well, we’d have a problem.

      Don’t worry though, as long as your dough is rising it can’t be a complete disaster. If it still feels FAR too wet to work with, flour your board more than you normally would and turn the dough out onto that, kneading it a few times to incorporate a bit more flour. Please remember though that it *should* be a bit sticky, and as long as you can roll it into a ball in your palm it’s just fine. If you try and turn into Johnny Dough Hand, you will need to knead it a few more times with another scatter of flour.

      The only thing I can think of in terms of making a mistake with the recipe is maybe if you added all 12 of the butter to the dough instead of 5? That could make it greasy and quite difficult to work.

      Chin up, and please do let us know how it goes!

  • Frederica

    One bocconcino!

    Bocconcini is plural, as is panini and paparazzi, . If you are going to slaughter the language, why not just say mozzarella balls?

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Frederica – thank you for the informative comment! I actually didn’t know that bocconcino was the singular, so that’s a good lesson for the future.

      Now then, for everybody else, please enjoy your mozzarella ball bread.

      • Aura

        Wow.. what an obnoxious comment! Who gives a damn if it’s one bocconcino or two bocconcini?! This bread is amazing, too bad some people dont have anything constructive to say!

  • Sally Jackson

    I baked this bread yesterday. We did enjoy it, but – as everyone has different tastes – there are tings I would change. I found the bread badly over herbed. I think the oregano and basil can be cut at least in half and possibly more than that. As it is, the herbs drown out the flavor of everyting else. As I wasn’t able to find mini bocconcini but only four large mozzarella pieces per container, I think I would change the number of dough pieces to 32 rather than 36. [Dividing ehmt into quarters instead of having to mess with the math of 8 pieces divided by 36 is easier.] The bread was very salty. As parmesan is salty I think I would opt for unsalted butter and no bacon fat for dipping the bread balls. I would increase the garlic powder in the parmesan mix and eliminate the basil and oregano. When I make this again, and I will – incorporating the changes I mentioned – I think I will bake the bread balls separately on a pan rather than as monkey bread. I found that the topmost part of the bread, with its crenchy crust, was more appealing than the central softer pieces.

    • jenb

      Each to their own. I’ve made it twice and am making it again this weekend for a birthday, by special request, and I am sure it will be just as big a hit the third time around. I would honestly add more herbs, if it were to my palate alone. The numbers don’t really matter to me, although the second time I found some super teeny balls of mozza and won’t do that again – a lot more work! I think the bacon fat is essential – it’s the star ingredient here, next to the bocconcini. Some folks were less than fond of the sundried tomatoes, so I may use the oil-packed variety this time, unless the birthday girl would rather I leave them out altogether. And as to saltiness? I sprinkled the remaining cheese and bacon/butter fat over top before baking, both times. YUMMMMM!!!

      • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

        Man, I am NOTORIOUSLY BAD at responding to comments in a timely manner.
        Jenb, thank you so much for your kind comment, and we’re so glad that you like this bread enough to make it a repeat recipe!!

  • http://www.eatmedelicious.com Ashley

    Wow. Seriously wow.

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  • Michele

    i just came across this recipe and can’t wait to try it – it looks fantastic!! One question…I’m going on a girls weekend and would love to make this but won’t have the time to do it all at once while i’m there (which is a 2 hour car ride). Do you think it would be ok to prepare and then leave refrigerated until the next day to bake?

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Hi Michele, you can absolutely do this in advance, but I would make a couple of caveats;
      - the dough will rise in the fridge, just much slower. Even if you are refrigerating it the night before, try to do it later rather than earlier or you’ll have one puffy bread in the morning.
      - If you have a 2 hour car ride, the dough will also rise in the car. Yeast is very determined like that. If possible, keep it cool in the car and cook as soon as you arrive.

      What I would suggest, if you have time (and your girls would agree to it), make the dough in advance and prepare all the ingredients. When you get to the girls’ weekend, stuff, assemble and bake the bread. This way your friends can help you (it CAN get tedious rolling all those little balls) and you don’t need to worry about Monster Bread because it rose too long in the pan and started to seep out.

      Good luck!

  • http://ppod.wordpress.com Melanie

    I made this last night and it was amazing. :) Thanks for posting the recipe!

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Aw shucks, thanks Melanie! We’re so glad that you enjoyed this bread!!

  • Kat

    Oh My Gah! This bread was sooo yummy! I made it for my husband and some of his family this weekend and they all loved it. Hubby even went back for THIRDS! There were only 5 of us and we had leftovers which me and my husband polished off for brunch! Only bad part was that our oven decided to take a crap that day :( So, we ended up only being able to use the broiler. Broiled it until it browned on top and then flipped the bundt pan over onto a cookie sheet and continued cooking that way. I would check it about every 10 minutes or so until it felt right. So, it came out all cooked but it did fall a little and I am sure it wasnt as fluffy as it should have been but it was so good. Next time I am testing my oven before I start!

    Thanks for the great recipe!!

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  • Jay

    WOW!! I made this bread last night for some dinner guests and it was a hit!! It takes a fair amount of time to prepare but it was worth it. I will be making this bread again.

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  • Sally Jackson

    Recipe Revisited: When I made this originally I felt that there was far too much oregano and basil and that the bread would benefit from a lesser quantity. Yesterday I made the bread without any oregano or basil. I left out the tomato, simply forgot it, and didn’t use the bacon grease. I rolled the balls of dough in unsalted butter, no bacon grease, and used shredded Parmesan cheese because that’s what I had on hand. The aroma of the bread, while it was baking, was enough to drive one nuts. My husband and I fell upon the bread as soon as it was out of the oven and cool enough to eat without blistering our mouths from the molten cheese. Wow! Stupendously wonderful. This is something I will make again and again.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Sally – I am absolutely overjoyed to see that you enjoyed this bread enough to make it ‘your own’!!! That’s the best part of cooking, isn’t it? I love fiddling around until I get something that tastes just right to me, and I think it’s great that you do the same thing and adapt recipes to your personal tastes rather than abandoning them. Thank you for your comment and so glad that you and your husband have settled on a technique that tickles!!

  • http://www.rickaguilar.com Rick Aguilar

    I made this for the game yesterday, crushingly good. OMG, I froze half because there was so much. I have a picture if you want to see it.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Rick – thank you for your comment! So glad that this went over well with you and your fellow sports fans! And yes, we would absolutely LOVE to see your picture of the bread! I’m such a bloody voyeur…

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  • Pat

    This looks amazing! I would love to attempt this! How can I print out a text only copy of this recipe?

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  • Pam

    Im making this for new year we’ve tonight and I am so excited! My Bocconcini tub only had 19 pieces in it, so I used some mozzarella for the rest. It’s baking right now for 30 min and I’m going to bake the remaining 10 min when I get to the party tonight. Thanks soo much for this recipe! Reminds me of the Bocconcini garlic bread from Milestones.

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      Pam – a belated Happy New Years to you, and thank you for your comment!! We hope that it went well and would love to hear your thoughts…good, bad or otherwise!

  • Sally Jackson

    I made this bread [or at least my version of it] for Thanksgiving and it not only got rave reviews, I was begged to makt it again for Christmas! Yummy stuff!

    • http://www.choosy-beggars.com Tina

      That’s great, Sally!! I think you might be this bread’s biggest fan :) And hey, considering how I feel about carbs, bacon, and cheese, glad to see that I am in good company!!!

  • Deb

    Holy WOW was this delicious!  I made it as an appetizer for a small dinner party, and nobody wanted dinner after this.  My aunt loved it so much she took the recipe home with her.  Even the people who don’t normally like olives were all over this.  Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    • Tina

       Deb – thank you so much for your comment!!!  We are DELIGHTED that this went over well at your part-tay and appreciate that you took the time to let us know. Thanks again!!

  • JNo

    More than two years after this popped up on Yeast Spotting, I’m still making this bread – I get a little glowy and dance when I describe it to people, and it’s my most requested potluck bring-along. In fact, the dough is proofing on my counter now for a party this evening.
    Thank you for the glory that is this bread.

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