My Mother made this wonderful cheese bread at Christmas and we were all so impressed that Ula and I both wanted the recipe.
1 Cup warm water
2 teaspoons yeast
1 Cup unbleached white flour
3/4 Cup warm water
3 Tablespoons honey
4 teaspoons yeast
1/4 Cup plus one teaspoon vegetable shortening
4 3/4 Cups unbleached white flour
1 Tablespoon salt
1/2 Cup Romano Cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 Cup Asiago Cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
To make the starter, combine the water and yeast in a medium size mixing bowl. Stir to dissolve the yeast. Add the flour and stir until it is fully incorporated. Cover with a cloth and let it sit at room temperature for a half hour.
To make the dough, combine the water, honey, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir to dissolve the yeast fully. Add the shortening, flour, salt, cheese, and starter. Mix on low speed until the dough is fully developed. Remove the dough from the mixing bowl.
Divide the dough into two equal portions. Roll each piece of dough into a smooth ball. Cover each ball of dough with a warm, damp cloth and let it rest at room temperature for a half hour.
Form the dough into loaves, again cover with a warm, damp cloth and let it rise for half an hour.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Score loaves with a sharp knife and spray the dough with water. Bake for a half hour, or until golden brown.
Cool before cutting. If a bread pan was used for the baking, remove from the pan before cooling.
-----Makes 2 loaves