Cheese and Bacon Loaf

This is probably the recipe I get nagged most for.  The silly thing is, I can't even claim it as my own.  It's actually based on Tamasin Day-Lewis' Ham and Comte cake from her book Supper for a Song.

Ridiculously easy to make - all you need to do is be able to weigh and stir, this is a great one for novices and is perfect for a picnic snack or an afternoon treat.

Makes 12 small slices (6 if, like me, you are greedy)

200g plain flour
150g cheese (use whatever is to hand - feta works really well)
150g ham/bacon chopped fine (again - whatever you have)
50g sundried tomatoes (Day-Lewis uses olives but I find it makes it too salty)
100g melted butter (unsalted is best)
2-3 sprigs of rosemary and chives, chopped
3 large eggs, beaten
7g fast acting dry yeast
salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to 200c/Gas Mark 6.  Butter a 900g loaf tin.

Put all your ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir well.  Scrape into the prepared loaf tin.

Bake for 10 minutes then turn the oven down to 180c/Gas Mark 4 and bake for a further 20 min.  Test with a skewer, it should come away clean when done.  Return it to the oven if it's sticky. The cake won't rise much but the top should be browned.

Remove from the oven when cooked and pour away the excess butter from the top.  Don't panic if there is still some left as this will absorb into the cake and keep is gorgeously moist. 

Leave it to cool on a wire rack for around 20 minutes and then turn out. 

Best eaten warm, the cake can also be kept for a few days wrapped in greaseproof paper.  But usually there isn't much left!

Happy Baking!


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