Ham and Cheese Picnic Bread

Ham and Cheese Picnic Bread

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped ham
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 (4 ounce) jar diced pimento peppers, drained
1/2 cup black olives, drained and chopped

In a small mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast mixture with the flour, egg, butter, sugar and salt; mix well. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 8 minutes.

Lightly oil a large mixing, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine the ham, cheese, pimento and olive in a medium mixing bowl; set aside.

Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll or pat the dough into a 10 x 14 inch rectangle. Make parallel cuts 3/4 inch wide and 2 inches long on the two long edges of the rectangle. Evenly spread the filling mixture over the center of the rectangle.

Fold the short ends of the rectangle over the filling. Starting from one of these ends; alternately stretch strips from the two sides across the filling so that the strips overlap diagonally. Transfer the loaf to a lightly greased baking sheet, cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes.

Bake at 400 degrees F. for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Makes 1 loaf

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