recipe

Jalapeño Cheese Bread in the Dutch Oven

I’m back with a new bread recipe for making in the Dutch Oven!

Jalapeno Cheese Bread
Jalapeno Cheese Bread in the Dutch Oven

This one is not your typical loaf of bread, but I think you will really like it!

If you are late tuning in, you may want to read about the loaf that started my current obsession with baking bread in the Dutch Oven.  You can read the original post here: Crusty Bread in a Dutch Oven

I’ve also made a nice Italian style bread, which you can read about here: Recipe: Crusty Italian Bread in the Dutch Oven

And…if you are really just beginning to learn about Dutch Oven cooking in general, it might also be helpful to check out this post: Why I love my Dutch Oven


Now back to the Jalapeño Cheese Bread!!

Note: The measurements are a bit different for this recipe than my other ones.  I’m not sure why that is, so I will probably go back and make this again using the measurements of my original recipe.  If I do, I will be sure to inform you of the results.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups flour (I always use King Arthur Unbleached All Purpose, but only if you don’t mind “encouraging the liberals”! 😂😂😂)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast or contents of one yeast packet
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon salt (or less, if you desire)
  • 2 cups lukewarm water
  • 2-3 cups shredded cheese (I suggest sharp cheddar, Colby, Monterey Jack and a bit of Parmesan totaling 3 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons or more of chopped pickled jalapeno peppers (We prefer Mt. Olive brand)

Instructions:

  1. Dissolve the yeast into the lukewarm water and stir, let sit in a warm place for 5-10 minutes to allow to bloom.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the flour and salt. Once combined add in the shredded cheeses and mix to combine.
  3. To the flour/cheese mixture, add the pickled jalapeño. Mix.
  4. Add the proofed yeast to the flour and stir with a spoon at first. Use your hands to bring it all together and shape it into a nice ball.
  5. Put the dough ball in a clean bowl and cover the bowl with film and then with a dish cloth.
  6. Allow dough to sit in a warm location until it rises to about twice its size.
  7. Punch down the dough and knead a bit to get the air out. Don’t over knead the dough or it will toughen. Put your kneaded dough ball back in the bowl and cover again. Allow to rise about an hour.
  8. Preheat your oven–with covered Dutch Oven inside–to 450 degrees.
  9. When the oven is preheated, remove the Dutch Oven. Place your dough ball in the hot Dutch Oven and cover. You can use parchment paper, if you’d like but it’s not really necessary. You can sprinkle the bottom of the pan with a bit of flour if you’re worried about it sticking.
  10. Put the Dutch Oven in the preheated oven and bake covered for 45 minutes. Remove the cover and bake for 10-15 minutes longer or until browned to your liking.
  11. Remove the Dutch Oven and tip it over. The bread should pop right out!
  12. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes before slicing. Enjoy!

Dutch Oven · recipe

Lazy Lasagna in the Dutch Oven

Lazy Lasagna
Hot-from-the-oven Lazy Lasagna!

I’m back with my Dutch Oven and a new recipe for what I call “Lazy Lasagna”–but it could also be a pasta bake, if you’d like.  I call it Lazy Lasagna, because it has all the ingredients of my regular lasagna without all the time consuming layering.

Barilla Mezzi Rigatoni
Mezzi rigatoni, regular sized rigatoni or even ziti would work fine for this dish

To make this dish, I started with cooking two boxes (two pounds) of Barilla’s Mezzi Rigatoni, which is a short but wide tube of pasta.  I cook the rigatoni for 10 minutes only, because I want to keep my pasta firm. Regular rigatoni or even ziti would work just as well, so feel free to use what you have.

When the pasta has cooked, drain off the water in a colander and return the cooked pasta to the original pot.  It’s helpful if you do not overly drain your pasta for this one, because a little of the pasta water will help when mixing your ingredients into the pasta.

Ricotta and Shredded Cheeses
Ricotta and Shredded Cheeses used for making this Lazy Lasagna

To the drained pasta, add a full container of ricotta, a jar of pre-made sauce OR your own homemade sauce, a generous portion of shredded mozzarella cheese and seasoning.  I like to add salt, pepper, a touch of crushed pepper, and a blend of dried basil, oregano and rosemary, but obviously adjust to your preference.  Mix until blended well.

Cooked pasta mixed with sauce and cheeses
I was making this for people who don’t like too much sauce, so my pasta looks pink! You can adjust the amount of sauce you use.

Add some sauce to the bottom of your Dutch Oven then add your pasta mixture.  Two pounds of pasta with all the other mix-ins will fill a 5.5 quart Dutch Oven almost to the top.  If you have a smaller pan, adjust accordingly.

Lazy Lasagna ready for the oven
Lazy Lasagna all assembled and ready to go into the oven

Top the pasta mixture with the remaining sauce and then sprinkle the top with shredded mozzarella and then a healthy portion of shredded, dry cheese (I use Stella Three Cheese Italian, which is a mixture of Parmesan, Asiago and Romano cheeses).

Completed Lazy Lasagna
Just removed my Lazy Lasagna from the oven and it’s cooling on the board

Cover and bake in your preheated 375 degree oven for 45 minutes.  Then remove the cover and bake for another 10-15 minutes to brown the cheese on top.

 

Digging In to the Lazy Lasagna
No need to worry about cutting THIS lasagna perfectly!

 

Ingredients:

  • Two boxes of Mezzi Rigatoni or similar tube shaped pasta
  • Two jars of prepared pasta sauce or equivalent of homemade sauce
  • One 32 ounce container of ricotta cheese
  • Two cups (or so) shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
  • Seasonings such as salt, pepper, crushed pepper, basil, oregano and rosemary
Plated Lazy Lasagna
Spoon a portion of your Lazy Lasagna and serve with extra sauce if you’d like…or not!