Christmas, Savory Bread

Garlic and Asiago Twists

A couple months ago, Mom and I were watching a baking show where the baker was making baguettes with caramelized garlic in the dough.  He was saying that you wouldn’t even want traditional garlic toast after eating that bread!  Neither Mom nor I had ever heard of putting garlic in a bread dough, and we both thought it was a fascinating idea.

Garlic and Asiago Twists in a white bowl

This bread is definitely for the garlic lovers out there!  There’s a lot of fresh, pan-fried garlic that goes into this dough; just over 1/2 cup.  Interestingly enough, the garlic’s naturally spicy flavor mellows significantly with cooking, so don’t worry about getting garlic overload!  The crispy, golden brown garlic smells so good as it’s cooking, that you will need to sample some.  Another reason to increase the quantity!

A person holding a piece of the Garlic and Asiago Twist

The shaping of these little rolls is another twist on a traditional dinner roll.  It looks fancy, and is really simple to do!  If you can tie a regular knot, you can do it.

This bread tastes fantastic dipped into a steaming bowl of our creamy Zuppa Toscana or with Christmas dinner.  🥣  Mmmm!

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A person's hands cupped around a Garlic and Asiago Twist

Garlic and Asiago Twists


  • Author: Emma
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 50 minutes
  • Yield: 12 twists

Description

Garlic and Asiago Twists are easy dinner rolls flavored with pan-fried garlic, Asiago cheese, and herbs.


Ingredients

  • rounded 1/2 cup garlic, roughly diced (83g) (about 1 head of garlic)
  • 1-2 teaspoons butter
  • 1/8 cup fresh parsley sprigs, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
  • 5 cups bread flour (500g)
  • 2 teaspoons fine salt (10g)
  • 3 teaspoons fast-action yeast (10g)
  • 3/4 cup Asiago cheese, grated
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (55g)
  • about 1 1/4 cup lukewarm water (about 300 ml)

For Decoration

  • 1 egg, beaten

Instructions

Cooking the Garlic (10 minutes + 15 minutes cooking)

  1. Peel the garlic cloves and roughly dice them.
  2. Melt 1-2 teaspoons of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until bubbling.  Add the garlic and turn the heat down to low.  Cook until crispy and golden brown, stirring frequently, about 15-20 minutes.  Deglaze the pan with a tablespoon of white balsamic vinegar if necessary.
  3. Spoon the cooked garlic into a bowl to cool.  Set aside.

Making the Dough (35 minutes + 1 hour proving)

  1. Rinse and pat dry the fresh parsley and rosemary, then chop them.
  2. Pour the bread flour into a large mixing bowl.  Add the salt and yeast on opposite sides of the bowl and stir in each with your finger.  Add the grated Asiago, parsley, rosemary, basil, and garlic powder and stir to combine.
  3. Dump in the butter and half of the water and begin to stir, crush, and knead the mixture to form a dough.  Gradually add more water and continue to work the dough until all the flour is picked up and a somewhat sticky dough has formed.
  4. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10-15 minutes, until the dough is no longer so sticky and has become smooth and quite stretchy.
  5. Shape the dough into a ball, place in a buttered bowl, and cover tightly with plastic wrap.  Let the dough prove for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until doubled in size.

Shaping the Twists (30 minutes + 45 minutes proving)

  1. Line an 11 by 17-inch metal cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and punch it down all over to knock out large pockets of gas.
  3. Flatten the dough and dump the cooled, cooked garlic on top.  Fold the dough over the garlic and pinch to seal, then knead until the garlic is evenly distributed in the dough.
  4. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces, using a kitchen scale for accuracy.
  5. Punch down a blob of dough to a rough rectangle.  Roll it up tightly from the long edge, then use your palms to roll the dough into a 14-16 inch rope.  If the dough is too taut to roll easily, let it rest for a few minutes while you work on another rope.
  6. To twist the dough, tie each rope into a very loose knot and wrap the loose ends around the knot to form a wreath shape.
  7. Place each twist on the prepared cookie sheet and put the tray inside a clean garbage bag, tucking the excess bag under the tray to seal.  Let the dough prove inside the bag for about 45-55 minutes, until the dough springs back quickly when lightly prodded with a fingertip.
  8. About 15 minutes before the dough is done proving, preheat the oven to 400 F.

Baking the Twists (5 minutes + 20 minutes baking + 10 minutes cooling)

  1. Brush the twists all over with beaten egg, then bake at 400 F for 10 minutes.  Lower the temperature to 375 F and bake for another 10-15 minutes, until the twists are a rich golden brown and have an internal temperature of 200 F.
  2. Transfer the twists to wire racks to cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes

  • The proving times are approximate.  The dough will prove more quickly in a warm room instead of a cool room, so be sure to check the dough often if it’s in a warm place.

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