Chile Cheddar Pull Apart Bread

Ancho (Ahn-cho) Chile (Capsicum Annum) means Wide Chile Pepper. This chile ranges from 3 – 4 on a heat scale of 1 to 10. An Ancho is the dried form of a Poblano Pepper and often is mislabeled as a Pasilla or Mulato Pepper. Anchos have sweet fruity flavor with hints of cherry, prune, and fig. Anchos, combined with the Pasilla and Guajillo, form the Holy Trinity of chiles used to prepare the traditional mole sauces. Scoville heat units are 1,000 to 3,000.

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2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (343.75 grams)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup lowfat milk
1/2 stick unsalted butter
1/4 cup water
2 eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup shredded extra-sharp cheddar
4-5 large dried ancho chiles
olive oil for drizzling


In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine 2 cups of the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Set that aside. In a small saucepan, combine milk and butter over low heat until the butter is just melted. Remove it from the heat, add your water, and cool the mixture until it’s about 120 degrees.

Pour the milk and butter mixture over the dry ingredients. Add your eggs one at a time, until they’re well mixed. Add in your half a cup of remaining flour, mix until smooth and then add the rest two tablespoons at a time. Mix using the paddle attachment on your mixer until everything is just combined.

Switch to the dough hook to knead for a couple of minutes until the dough is smooth, but sticky. Put your dough into a large bowl, greased with a little bit of oil, cover with plastic wrap, and a kitchen towel. Place your dough in a warm, draft-free, spot to rise for an hour.

While the dough is rising, prepare your filling by first re-hydrating your chiles. Place the re hydrated chiles in a small food processor, add a little bit of water and process into a slightly liquid form (you should still have pieces of the chili intact). Set aside.

After your dough has risen for an hour (or doubled in size), punch it down to deflate it, and then place in the fridge for an hour or over night.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 9×5 loaf pan and set aside.

Now, lightly flour a flat service, shape the dough into a roughly 1×2 foot rectangle. Drizzle the dough with a bit of olive oil Brush on the chili pepper mixture with a kitchen brush. Sprinkle cheese over the top of the chile mixture. Cut vertically to make 6 even strips of dough. Now stack those strips on top of each other and slice a second time, into 6, even stacks. Place those stacks side-by-side in the greased pan, and allow to rise for another 45 minutes. Finally, put that dough into the oven and bake on the center rack for 30 minutes. Take out of the oven, allow to rest for 5 minutes, and then pull apart for bread goodness!

Makes one loaf.

Adapted from