Ham and Cheese Pull-Apart Bread
Serves: 2 (9x5-inch) loaves
- 1 ⅓ cups warm whole milk (105° to 110°)
- 2 (0.25-ounce) packages active dry yeast
- 5 ½ to 6 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 4 large eggs
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup stone-ground mustard
- 8 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 3 cups diced smoked ham
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- For dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine warm milk and yeast. Let stand until mixture is foamy, about 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together 5. cups flour, sugar, and salt. With mixer on low speed, add 2 cups flour mixture to yeast mixture, beating until combined. Beat in melted butter and eggs. Stir in remaining flour mixture. Switch to the dough hook attachment. Beat at medium speed until a soft dough forms, adding remaining ½ cup flour if needed. (Dough should only be slightly sticky.)
- Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Loosely cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°) until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Gently punch down dough, and divide in half. On a lightly floured surface, roll half of dough into an 18x12-inch rectangle.
- For filling: Spread ¼ cup butter and ¾ cup mustard onto dough. In a medium bowl, stir together cheese, pepper, and garlic salt. Sprinkle half of cheese mixture and half of ham over mustard; press cheese mixture and ham into mustard.
- Spray 2 (9x5-inch) loaf pans with cooking spray.
- Slice dough lengthwise into 3 (4-inch-wide) strips. Cut into 4x3-inch rectangles. Stack rectangles on their sides in one prepared pan. Repeat procedure with remaining dough, butter, mustard, cheese mixture, and ham. Loosely cover and let rise until puffed, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Brush loaves with melted butter, and cover with foil. Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes, removing foil during last 5 minutes of baking.