Sausage Stuffed French Bread


I made this sausage stuffed bread last weekend for a party. It was a crowd-pleasing dish, and easy to bake in the oven as guests arrived. When it was ready to be served, I simply placed the entire loaf on a table with a sharp bread knife, and people helped themselves.

Baked into homemade French bread is a savory filling of Italian sausage, spinach and cheese. You can take a shortcut and get some store-bought dough. But really, if you’re going to make this, you may as well go the full mile and make your own bread.

As you can see from the photo, the bread split while baking. That might be avoided by using a knife to cut a 1/4-inch deep cut along the loaf, but party guests didn’t seem to mind.

Sausage Stuffed Bread

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1 recipe of French Bread dough (below)
2 pounds mild Italian sausage
1 10-ounce box frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
4 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped basil
1 egg, beaten
1 egg white

Remove sausage from casing and brown in frying pan; drain and set aside until cool.

Combine sausage, spinach, cheeses and parsley in a large bowl, add beaten egg and mix thoroughly.

Roll dough on a floured board into a rectangular shape approximately 1/2 inch thick. Spread filling evenly over dough to within 1/2 inch of edges and roll up tightly, folding in the ends.

Beat egg white with 1 tablespoon water and brush dough. Place on greased baking sheet, cover with a damp cloth, and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30-40 minutes.

Bake at 325 degrees for 45-55 minutes, or until golden brown and internal temperature reaches 190 degrees. Makes 12 servings.

French Bread

2 cups water
2 tablespoons yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cups canola oil
1 tablespoons Kosher salt
4 cups flour

Put 110-degree water, yeast, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Let sit for about 5 minutes until it gets frothy.

Add canola oil, salt, and flour. Mix ingredients. Slowly add flour. Knead for about 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball. Place dough in a large greased bowl, and turn once. Cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

At this point, dough is ready to be baked, or it can be stored in fridge for up to 4 days. If stored in fridge, allow to sit at room temperature for about 30-45 minutes before baking.

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