Christmas Tree Pull Apart Protein Bread
It’s a pull apart bread with a holiday spin! Baked with our Natural Pounamu Protein Whey Isolate Powder, it is the perfect appetizer for everyone. Stuffed with Mozzarella cheese and covered with garlic butter, it will be a hit with your family and friends this holiday season!
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15-20 minutes
Rising time: 2-2.5 hours
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 1 tablespoon instant or active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons honey or granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or other neutral-flavored oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup Pounamu Natural Protein Whey Isolate or concentrate
- 3 cups all-purpose or bread flour
- Mozzarella or cheddar cheese (enough for 25 1” cubes)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon of water
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon rosemary
- 1 tablespoon thyme
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan
- Either in a stand mixer with a dough hook or a large bowl by hand, mix in warm water (water should be very warm to the touch, but not hot), yeast, honey, oil, salt, Pounamu Natural Whey Protein Isolate and 1 cup of flour.
- Begin mixing either with a wooden spoon or in a stand mixer.
- Gradually add more flour until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl.
- Begin kneading dough. 4-5 minutes for a stand mixer, 7-9 minutes by hand.
- After a few minutes of kneading, check the dough. It should be soft and smooth, but also a little sticky. Grab a piece and roll it in your hand; if you can roll it into a ball in your hand (with a little residue), you're good to go. If it gets all over your hands and is very sticky, gradually add more flour and continue kneading.
- Place the dough in a pre-greased bowl and set aside for 1 - 2 hours with a damp tea towel over the top. Let the dough double in size.
- While the dough rises, cut your cheese into 25 small squares. You can use mozzarella or parmesan cheese for the filling, or a mixture of the two!
- Once ready, lightly punch the dough down and place it onto a floured surface, divide into 25 pieces.
- Flatten each piece into a rectangle about 2” wide and place a piece of cheese in the middle. Wrap the dough around the cheese and pinch it together to create a tightly sealed ball. Repeat this for all 25 pieces.
- Place balls seam-side down on a baking sheet in the shape of a Christmas tree, lightly touching (they will merge together once the dough has risen).
- Cover assembled tree with a damp cloth and let rest for 30 minutes.
- While letting the dough rest, preheat the oven to 450 degrees and mix egg and water to create the egg wash.
- Uncover the tree and brush the dough with egg wash. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the dough is golden brown.
- While bread is in the oven, combine butter, garlic, rosemary, and thyme in a pot, melt at a low temperature. (You can also microwave the butter mixture)
- Once the bread is baked, brush the butter mixture all over your baked tree!
- Top with grated parmesan and serve immediately!
- Add almost any dipping sauce for extra enjoyment!
- If garlic isn’t your thing, you can omit it from the recipe completely and still enjoy delicious bread!