Sun Dried Tomatoes and Gruyere Pull Apart Bread

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“The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight.”
M. F. K. Fisher

 I learned the joy of eating home made bread from my daughter. It started with the butternut Squash rolls that I made in a bread baking session with a friend and brought some home. After having tasted those, each fall she would merrily point to the butternut squash and look at me with a twinkle in her eyes and ask me if we could buy it. Despite knowing why she wanted it, I would still ask her, “ Hmm! I wonder what we can make with that!” And she would always reply with a gleeful smile and a dimple on her cheek, “The best squash rolls in the world.” That those were the only squash rolls she had ever had was besides the point. So we made those squash rolls a part of our Autumn tradition and we whipped up a batch or two every fall. She would patiently wait for them to slightly cool down, then ask me to slice a couple of buns in two, add in some jam, hand me one of those and then sit on the floor cross legged and ask me to sit with her. Then she would take her first bite of the bread and close her eyes and enjoy it in silence.

The delight in that silent eating, the blissful satisfaction of having made something so nurturing and nourishing seeped deep inside. In that one moment, bread baking became soul satisfying.

Time flew and she grew up And she discovered other kinds of breads ( read – enjoyed eating them) and wondered if her mom could make some at home. It looked an innocent request at the time, but with the amount of bread baking I have done this past year, she might have just woken up a bread monster in me. How else would you describe the fact that I have decided to bake along with some blogger friends for the next 12 months as part of the project “We Knead to Bake”.

This first bread, as part of the project “We Knead to Bake” is a pull apart bread. Aparna, who writes the beautiful blog My Diverse Kitchen is the Mastermind of the project.  She plans a recipe, sends in instructions and we bake anytime during the month and post on the 24th of each month.  For this month’s bread, we could use a filling of our choice and shape it any way we liked as long as we used the same basic recipe.  I chose to make the sun dried tomatoes with Gruyere pull apart bread with a hint of garlic and chilli flakes.

Click ! For the most wonderful collection of pull apart breads!


This Bread has also been submitted to Yeast Spotting

Sun Dried Tomato and Gruyere Pull Apart Bread


For the Dough:

  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 2 3/4 to 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 25 gm butter soft at room temperature
  • 1 tbs garlic minced
  • 3/4 cup milk + a couple of tbsp to brush over the bread

For the Filling:

  • 15 to 20 gm melted butter
  • 2 Tbs sun dried tomatoes
  • Crushed pepper/ red chilli flakes to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Gruyere


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve the sugar and the yeast in the 1/2 cup of warm milk. Wait 5 minutes till the yeast bubbles up.
  2. Put 2 3/4 cups of flour, salt, softened butter, and garlic paste in the bowl of your stand mixer and with the paddle attachment, mix it all in.
  3. Then add the yeast mixture andthe 3/4 cup of milk and stir till everything is mixed.
  4. Switch to the dough hook and knead until you have a soft, smooth and elastic/ pliable dough which is not sticky. Add a little extra flour if your dough is sticking,but only just as much as is necessary.
  5. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a well-oiled bowl, turning the dough to coat itcompletely with oil. Cover and let it rise for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours or untilalmost double in volume.
  6. Dust your work surface lightly with flour. Deflate the dough, add in the tomatoes, cheese, garlic and chili flakes.
  7. Make 30 walnut size balls out of the dough, leaving a bit extra for the stem and leaves.
  8. Place the dough balls in the shape of a grape bunch, cover with a cloth and let rise until doubled.
  9. bake on 350* F for 25- 30 minutes.

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Comments 28

  1. Will you be doing the Knead to Bake project again? I’d love to know if you’re accepting anyone else to join in for 2014-I love making bread and I think I’d have a lot of fun trying to get a little creative in the kitchen…and seeing what everyone else makes, of course…This looks divine…all right…back to my pizza making, it’s lunchtime. Toodles.

  2. Hi Anshie, loved the super innovative shape you gave to this amazing pull apart bread. No wonder your kid likes your hand baked breads!!

  3. How can you get so creative? I mean, how!! i m jealous. Infinitely jealous of those people who got to eat this 😀 Brilliant is what i say!

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  4. What a lovely idea for a pull-apart bread. You are really very creative! Since these are so flavorful they can be served as an appetizer with soup. I am so making this!

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  5. I am awed! …. and a little bit jealous!! 😀 What a magnificent looking bread!! I’m going to try them your way! I love sun dried tomatoes!
    I started baking bread coz my mom refuses to make them! 😛

  6. I started making bread here because Hans stomach can’t take that much normal flour and spelt seems to be good for him so i ended up making out bread years ago as during that time spelt bread etc..was diffucuult to find inthe shops. I am glad you started enjoying home made bread. I love the sundried idea.

  7. loved the way u baked the bread, like a bunch of grapes, interesting filling and i enjoyed reading your post, would like to try your squash rolls too!

  8. Anshie babe – this is stunning. the garlic, the sun dries tomatoes, the cheese – its bursting with flavors. Loved the grape design – like having a savory grape 🙂
    you rock babe – your recipes rock.

  9. I need to bake some bread noww.. I made a flower shaped bread before and apple shape, with summer season I have to make this grape bread.
    Its going to be done over the weekend for sure! Love the shape, the presentation is nice and am sure it tastes heavenly!

  10. Great looking bread.
    I am sure that now your daughter has many to choose and will find it hard to decide on her favourite.

  11. I am so sure that your daughter will have a tough time choosing between your breads to decide which is her favourite. I lived the scene of mom and daughter enjoying the just cooled bread on the floor.
    Lovely bread there.

  12. I tried your Squash rolls and they were delish and soft. Infact the first Bread I ever baked were ur rolls. You seem to out do yourself everytime and like a good student I have to just keep following u. Love it 🙂

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