After a full-on Thanksgiving week of turkey, baked sliced ham, dressing, mashed potatoes, and a zillion side dishes I am usually “over-it.” Toss in a couple of holiday parties featuring turkey or ham and when Christmas dinner rolls around I am designing a menu based on pasta sauce or even meatloaf!
I don’t think it is all that unusual for families to choose lasagna or spaghetti and meatballs for their holiday get-togethers. For our family, a pasta meal means one more thing … pepperoni bread!
Many years ago I started making pepperoni bread. I thought I was pretty “hot stuff” serving this “homemade pepperoni bread” as part of an Italian meal, or even as a party appetizer! I started with frozen bread dough, thawing in the refrigerator overnight. My pepperoni bread was always a delight because we really had nothing else to compare it to!
But that all changed a couple of year’s ago when my nephew Ryan made 4 huge loaves of “bread from scratch” pepperoni bread for a family reunion meal.
To say, “it was a hit” is a complete understatement. To say there wasn’t one slice, a sliver, or even a crumb left, is the truth! Ryan and I share a love for cooking and baking. You may remember when he surprised me with these baking pans!
At that time, I wrote, “I will be sharing his Pepperoni Bread recipe soon!” That was July 4, 2014. My bad. December 20, 2015, the recipe is finally being delivered to your inbox or to a computer near you! To say it has been zinging through cyber-space wouldn’t really be true, but to say it has been on my “to-do” list is totally true!
Ryan began his recipe to me with this comment, “I use a bread machine to make the dough, but I bet you are so good you could probably make it by hand.”
He is right, I do love to make bread by hand. There is something special that happens inside of me when I am kneading bread. The rhythmic roll of the dough under my fingertips seems cathartic somehow. But hey, we are all busy these days. And so, my Kitchen Aid dough hook gets all the action when I make bread. I have a bread machine that has also made a lot of dough for various projects through the years. And finally … when the time is just too short, frozen bread dough works too!
For Ryan’s recipe, we will use the bread machine using the dough cycle. (But you can choose how you want to make the bread.) When cycle is completed, roll out dough on floured surface to form a rectangle. Brush 1 beaten egg onto the surface of the dough. Cover the center 1/3 of the rectangle with cheese and pepperoni in layers.
Ryan says, “Make sure to go all the way to the ends, leaving about 1/2 an inch uncovered. I use mozzarella, a little asiago, and pepperoni. I use about 3-4 cups of cheese, but you probably don’t need that much. I sometimes sprinkle some garlic powder on all of it as well.” [I think 3 to 4 cups of cheese makes this bread over-the-top outstanding. I like the addition of the garlic powder or garlic salt.]
Once you have the filling laid, fold each side over the center, and use more egg wash to seal all edges. Flip bread onto sprayed/greased cooking sheet. Spray cooking spray on top of bread and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let bread rise 30-40 minutes in a warm location. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or until golden on top.
I always rub the top with a stick of butter right after pulling from the oven. Cool briefly, and slice.
Thank you, Ryan, for sharing this recipe. The homemade bread is so tender and delicious. Your pepperoni bread is the stuff family traditions are made of! (Is it too early to mention our next family reunion is coming up in June? Can’t wait to see what you come up with for that one!)
Happy Baking and Have a Blessed Week,
P.S. Don’t forget to register for the Amazon gift card giveaway. It ends before Christmas! (See on right hand side of blog.)
The full recipe is listed below the Christmas story.
The Birth of Jesus Christ from Luke 2
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger because there was no place for them in the inn.
The Shepherds and the Angels
8 And in the same region, there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”[c]
15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph and the baby lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1 cup water, room temp
- 1 egg
- 3 and ¼ cups bread flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons active dry yeast, or quick acting dry yeast
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- 3 to 4 cups mixed Italian blend cheeses: mozzarella, asiago, parmesan, romano
- 6 oz. sliced pepperoni
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Butter for topping.
- Place bread ingredients in the bread machine in the order listed.
- Use Dough cycle. When cycle is completed, roll out dough on floured surface to form a large rectangle.
- Brush 1 beaten egg onto the surface of the dough.
- Cover center one-third of the rectangle with cheese and pepperoni in layers. Make sure to go all the way toward the ends, leaving about ½ an inch uncovered. Sprinkle with garlic powder.
- Once you have the filling laid, fold each side over the center, and use more egg wash to seal all edges.
- Flip bread onto a greased baking sheet or a sheet covered with parchment paper.
- Spray canola cooking spray on top of bread and cover loosely with plastic wrap.
- Let bread rise 30-40 minutes in a warm location.
- Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or until golden on top.
- Rub the top with a stick of butter right after pulling from the oven.
- Cool briefly, and slice. Enjoy!