This “Christmas Tree Garlic Bread” is a delicious treat that is perfect for the holiday season. Every bite of this pull-apart bread reveals a deliciously gooey mozzarella core that makes it simply irresistible. Coated with a generous layer of garlic butter, each piece is bursting with incredible flavors. To further enhance the experience, it is accompanied by a tangy tomato dipping sauce that perfectly complements the garlic deliciousness. Whether it’s a festive gathering or a simple family gathering, this bread will undoubtedly steal the show at any Christmas party buffet.
- 500g strong white bread flour
- 7 g bag of fast-acting dry yeast
- 2 tsp golden powdered sugar
- 100g butter, melted (buy a 250g pack and use the rest in the garlic butter)
- some oil for greasing
- 2 tbsp fine polenta or corn flour
- 150g pack of mozzarella (approx. 20 balls)
- small piece of butter
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 2 x 400g cans of chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tsp golden powdered sugar
- 140g butter
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- small bunch of parsley, finely chopped (leave some for garnish if desired)
You can prepare the dough two days in advance. Once kneaded, place it in an oiled bowl, cover with cling film and store in the fridge for two days. Then bring it back to room temperature before shaping and proofing. The tomato dipping sauce can also be made in advance and reheated just before serving.
- Place the flour in a large bowl or the bowl of a freestanding mixer.
- Place yeast and sugar on one side of the bowl and 1 teaspoon fine salt on the other.
- Mix everything together, then add the melted butter and 275ml warm water.
- Mix into a dough and then knead by hand for 10 minutes (or in a stand mixer for 5 minutes) until the dough feels stretchy and soft.
- Clean the bowl and then grease it lightly with a little oil.
- Turn the dough in the oiled bowl until well coated.
- Cover with cling film or a tea towel and place in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size.
- Alternatively, place the dough in the fridge and let it rise slowly for 2 days (bring to room temperature before moving on to step 2).
- Line your largest baking sheet with parchment paper and dust it with polenta or cornmeal.
- Drain the mozzarella and dry the balls on some kitchen paper.
- Tip the dough onto the work surface and punch out the air bubbles.
- To form a Christmas tree shape you will need 23 balls.
- Tear off clumps of dough, making sure each one is about the same size (if you want to be precise, weigh the dough, divide the weight by 23, and then weigh each clump of dough as you break it off).
- Shape each piece of dough into a disk and place a ball of mozzarella in the middle.
- Pull the sides of the dough up to enclose the cheese and pinch the dough together to seal.
- Roll into a ball and place on baking sheet in a tree shape, sealed side down.
- Leave some space between each ball as they grow as you walk.
- Without mozzarella, you’ll probably end up with 2 or 3 balls, so use those pieces of dough for the crust – for those who don’t like cheese.
- Cover the tray with a sheet of oiled cling film and set aside for 30 minutes until almost doubled in size.
- While the dough is rising, prepare the tomato dipping sauce.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the garlic and sizzle for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add tomatoes, oregano, vinegar, sugar and some spices.
- Simmer for 30 minutes until the sauce is thick.
- Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6.
- When the dough is ready, cover the baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
- In the meantime, prepare the garlic butter.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the garlic and sizzle for 1-2 minutes until the garlic is slightly darker (but not brown).
- When the bread is ready, transfer it to a platter.
- Stir most of the parsley into the garlic butter and brush the bread with a pastry brush.
- Let it sit and then apply more.
- If desired, sprinkle some more parsley on top to garnish.
- Reheat the tomato sauce and serve with the bread along with the remaining garlic butter.
Equipment and tools
To make this Christmas tree garlic bread you will need the following equipment and tools:
- mixing bowl
- measuring spoon
- measuring cup
- parchment paper
- Pizza cutter
This Christmas Tree Garlic Bread may contain the following allergens:
- Gluten (from bread flour)
- Dairy products (from butter and mozzarella)
Please check the specific brands and ingredients used to ensure it meets your nutritional needs.
Storage and leftovers
If there are any leftovers from the Christmas tree garlic bread, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, place the bread in a preheated 350°F oven for about 10 minutes or until warmed through. Enjoy!
The Health Benefits of Christmas Tree Garlic Bread
Christmas time is a time for delicious and indulgent treats. A classic dish that often appears at Christmas is garlic bread. This year, why not take your garlic bread game to the next level with the festive twist on Christmas Tree Garlic Bread? In addition to its delicious taste, this bread specialty also offers several health benefits.
1. Nutrient-rich flour
The recipe calls for 500g of strong white bread flour. Although flour is often viewed as a refined carbohydrate, it still contains important nutrients. Strong white bread flour is typically made from durum wheat grains, which contain more protein and fiber compared to all-purpose flour. It also provides a good amount of B vitamins and minerals such as iron and selenium.
2. Immune-boosting garlic
Garlic is not only a flavorful addition to dishes, but also a nutritional powerhouse. If you use 5 cloves of garlic in this recipe, you can benefit from its immune-boosting properties. Garlic contains compounds such as allicin, which have antimicrobial and antiviral effects. Including garlic in your diet can support your immune system, especially during the winter months.
3. Tomatoes for heart health
The tomato dip that goes with the Christmas tree garlic bread is not only delicious, but also good for heart health. Tomatoes are rich in the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition, tomatoes contain vitamins A and C, potassium and folic acid, making them a nutritious addition to this dish.
4. Healthy mozzarella
Mozzarella, which is used to make the cheese filling, is a popular cheese known for its mild flavor and smooth texture. It is a good source of protein and calcium, essential for maintaining strong bones and teeth. Mozzarella also contains vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin and vitamin B12.
5. Parsley for freshness
Finally, this recipe includes parsley, used not only for its bright green color but also for its health benefits. Parsley is rich in vitamins A, C and K as well as folic acid and iron. It is also known for its ability to freshen breath and support digestive health.
By making Christmas Tree Garlic Bread, you will not only enjoy a festive and delicious treat, but you will also benefit from the nutritional benefits of its ingredients. From the nutrient-dense flour to the immune-boosting garlic and heart-healthy tomato sauce, this dish offers a combination of flavors and health benefits that make it the perfect addition to your holiday table.