When B and I were newlyweds, some . . . oh . . . 24 years ago, I used to scour magazines looking for something new to make for dinner. Very few of those magazine recipes ever made it into my repitoire. Because, you know, I just don't keep a jar of roasted red peppers on my pantry shelf.
Or capers. Who really cooks with capers? Yuck.
But one recipe I found (I still remember that I found it in Better Homes and Gardens in an advertisement for dijon mustard of all things!) has become a family favorite. You know how, when you just can't think of what to make for dinner and you ask your family, they say all the things that you don't feel like making? Every time I ask my family, "What do you want to eat next week?" they all say, "Ham and Cheese loaf!"
(Oh, except for Abby who is my Contrary Mary who asks for spaghetti.)
So last week, when I asked Maggie all those questions about me, she thought my favorite food was Ham and Cheese loaf for a very good reason--I make it a lot. Because I love my family and I want to feed them nutritious foods that they just love every night of the week. I'm nice that way.
It's not that I don't like making this dish--I just have to be in the right mood to deal with the mixer and the yeast and all that. It's not hard to make. Just takes the right frame of mind. And a couple glasses of wine, maybe. I'm just sayin'. . .
So, for my sister, Jodi, who mocked my Ham and Cheese loaf in her comment last week, here is the recipe.
(I promise, this isn't turning into a recipe blog. I just happened to make a couple of things I wanted to share. I'll keep the blog as random as it always is--just to keep you on your toes.)
Ham and Cheese Loaf (a.k.a. "Dijon Ham and Swiss" by the makers of dijon mustard who gave me the recipe)
4 Cups flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 packages rapid rise yeast
1 Cup water
1/4 Cup dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 Cups chopped cooked ham
1 Cup shredded Swiss cheese
1 egg, beaten
Set aside 1 C. four. Mix remaining flour, sugar, salt, and yeast. Heat water, mustard and margarine to 125 to 130 degrees; stir into flour mixture. Mix in enough reserved flour to make a soft dough. Knead 4 minutes.
On a greased baking sheet, roll dough to a 14" x 12" rectangle.
[Note: I used coarse grain mustard last night because it's what I had. It was yummy! But that's why it looks grainy.]
Sprinkle ham and cheese down the center 1/3 of dough.
Make cuts from filling to dough edges a 1" intervals along sides of filling. Bring strips from opposite sides of filling together. Twist and place ends at an angle across filling.
Cover with towel and let rise by placing pan on top of a large, shallow pan half filled with boiling water. Let rise 15 minutes.
Brush with egg wash and bake at 375 for 25 minutes.
Isn't she beautiful??