Ham and cheese bread

This weekend I made a tangzhong method bread with ham and cheese. I know it seems like I’m constantly making tangzhong bread but it’s actually been a while since I made one. In fact, I completely forgot just how good these breads are. After I finished photographing, I took a bite and before I knew it I had finished off half a loaf. Eek. It was just so soft and delicious, I couldn’t help myself.

I’m been trying to think of new variations of the milk bread which has been my favorite recipe from the tangzhong recipes I’ve found. Since I’ve been making a lot of savory appetizers like pepperoni pizza puffs and bacon puffs, it only made sense to try a cheese and meat combination for the bread.

I worried that this variation might not taste good. The milk bread is a sweet bread and while I’ve seen savory variations on the asian bread, I normally don’t like the savory ones. I reduced the sugar for this recipe so that the bread wouldn’t be too sweet. I really enjoyed the soft fluffy bread with the addition of cheese and ham.

Ham and cheese bread (recipe base adapted from two of Christine’s recipes here and here,which she adapted from the 65 degrees book)



2½ cups bread flour
2tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 large egg
½ cup milk
120g tangzhong (click here for making tangzhong)
2 tsp instant yeast
3 tbsp butter (cut into small pieces, softened at room temperature)
3/4 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup ham, cut into small pieces

1. Combine the flour, salt, sugar and instant yeast in a bowl of a stand mixer. Make a well in the center. Add in all wet ingredients: milk, egg and tangzhong. Fit the dough hook attachment on your stand mixer and begin mixing on medium speed and knead until your dough comes together and then add in the butter and continue kneading.  Keep kneading until the dough is smooth, not too sticky on the surface and elastic. I kneaded the dough for about 18-20 minutes. Each mixer may vary.

When the dough is ready, you should be able to take a chunk of dough and stretch it to a very thin membrane before it breaks. When it does break, the break should be form a circle.

2. Knead the dough into a ball shape. Take a large bowl and grease with oil.  Place dough into  greased bowl and cover with a wet towel. Let it proof until it’s doubled in size, about 40 minutes.
3. Transfer to a clean surface. Divide the dough into four equal portions. Knead into balls.  Cover with cling wrap, let rest for 15 minutes.
4. Roll out each portion of the dough with a rolling pin into an oval shape.  Take one end of the dough and fold to meet the middle of the oval. Take the other end and fold to meet on top.

5. Flip dough over with the folds facing down,and flatten dough with rolling pin.
6. Flip dough over so the folds face up. Add ham and cheese across the dough then use rolling pin to roll the ham and cheese into the dough. Now roll the dough up. (the picture below is one I took of a plain milk bread I made previously without adding ham and cheese.) Place each of the rolls into the bread pan and put a piece of plastic wrap over the rolls. Let them rise until double the size, approximately another 40 minutes.
7. Beat an egg and brush egg mixture on top to create shiny eggwash finish.
8. Bake at 330 degrees F for approximately 30 minutes.

2 comments on “Ham and cheese bread”

  1. Thank you so much! This recipe looks so wonderfully delicious!! Can the tang zhong starter be added to any bread recipe? I was considering using it for a monkey bread type recipe.

    • I haven’t tried adding it to other bread recipes that weren’t based on the recipes in the 65 degrees book. However, I’ve seen other bloggers add it to other bread recipes with good results, so I think you should be able to do it with monkey bread. Let me know how it turns out!

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