This is yet another recipe that I’d been drawn to when I first looked at Around My French Table. I think that quick breads are wonderful – flavorful and homey. I love chives (and other fresh herbs), and who doesn’t like cheese?? Also, it was an easy recipe to get back into the swing of French Fridays. I needed that after a bit of time away (though I really want to figure out when I can make those shortribs and green beans!).
This was super-simple, and as Dorie suggests, lends itself to whatever you might have on hand. I can totally see this in the summer too, when fresh basil is at its best, or maybe thyme – and of course, one of my favorites – rosemary. This along with a nice vegetable soup (I made Dorie’s asparagus soup a couple of weeks ago) would make an amazing summer evening meal.
Ok, but here’s the fun part! The only trick to making quick breads is in the final mixing. It’s always better to undermix than overmix.
|so here are our ingredients (well, minus the chives…)|
|cheese, shredded and diced
I used comte (my new favorite cheese, thank you Dorie!)
a nice 1/4″ dice and fine shreds
|fresh chives, sliced and ready to go|
|this is exactly the point when you stop mixing
I know that there are a couple of flecks of flour that you can see
and it’s lumpy! but that’s what you want
overmix this, and you will end up with a really tough, chewy bread
|exactly as a quick-bread should look
mine isn’t quite as smooth as Dorie’s, I think because I didn’t
“even the top with the back of a spatula or spoon”
what can I say, I like rustic
|while I knew that I should wait until it was cool
I couldn’t resist taking one slice
even warm, it sliced beautifully!
but I did like this better after it had completely cooled
I really liked this bread. I liked the crispy exterior, and that you could taste the different flavors (use some nice olive oil here!). I thought it would be terrific with other flavor combinations, and with the addition of nuts as suggested. Other herbs, other cheeses – even the olives or sun-dried tomatoes as suggested would be great. One thing that I thought would be terrific with this would be to pair it with a blue-cheese spread. I make one that’s layered with some type of blue cheese (often Stilton, but could be Gorgonzola, or Maytag), alternating with a butter/cream cheese mixture (no, not good for you at all!). I often make that during the holidays, and that combination would be pretty special. Of course, the other thing that this just screamed for was a good cup of tomato soup! What a nice bread that you can either dress up or down, and easy enough to make at the last minute!!