Cheese and Parsley Bread


Bread is essential to life. Man can live by bread alone. Butter, jam, bacon, ham; all these are mere bonuses. Of course, we know that bacon makes the world go round. But then, some will say, the world has always been round. At which point I have to remind people that the Earth ain’t round. The globe ain’t a globe. It’s flattened at the top and bottom. So that makes the Great Circle Route the most efficacious route for jetliners, especially if you’re comin in to London, from over the Pole, flyin in a big airliner, as Arlo Guthrie seemed to have done.

Anyway, back to the question of Bread! Not the band! The thing you eat! Bread, made of flour, some sort of rising (or leavening) agent, water and maybe a coupla other things.

In this particular case, cheese and parsley, which gives us our daily Cheese and Parsley Bread!


Relax! We’re not going to explore the origins of bread itself! Whew, you say as you mop your brow! Grampa definitely getting old and mellowing with age, finally!

You are probably right!

This cheese and parsley bread has its origins in another bread, that has become a sort of staple in the House of Sharma. Namely, Le célèbre Pain à la banane.

Now that recipe has been attacked for having too long a baking time. This is an accusation that is fallacious in the extreme. For what is two (and a half) hours? Time to watch a good Bollywood movie, or a classic from the past when studio executives made movies with actual stories, with great dialogues and strong characters, rather than “witty” one liners before the next fantastic explosion that destroys half the city and leaves the main characters without a blemish. Anyway! I digress, you say and you say the truth. In this case. For what is truth, but what our “leaders”, in whom we trust, say it is?

Actually, time itself is an abstract construct and therefore has no real value, unless you’re paying me for my services, in which case, yes, it has a value!!

The Actual Origin

Let’s start over!

We were starting to talk about the genesis of this cheese and parsley bread, before we got sidetracked into political commentary and the creation of Tycho Brahe, the architect of time.

As you read the recipe on Banana Bread, you will notice that it contains buttermilk as a primary ingredient. Now the Grocery Gods have decreed that buttermilk may only be sold in cartons of 1 (One) litre each. And the Banana Bread only uses half a cup of buttermilk. Since the banana bread is sweet and needs ripened bananas it is made infrequently. No, not because of the baking time!

So, after the thing is baked, the left over carton of buttermilk lies in the fridge, taking up space, until finally, you sadly smell it and discard it in the sink.

This is a waste. And we abhor waste, be it in the kitchen, or the office. I shall make no mention of the criticism received at the hands of She Who and her frequent cries of “Why don’t you find some other use for it?”

Well, I searched high and I searched on the internet. And I found this here Cheese and Parsley Bread!

And so here we are!

The Recipe

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon (12g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup (6g) chopped fresh basil or parsley

Semi-dry Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (190g) shredded asiago cheese
  • 1/3 cup (50g) chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • 5 Tablespoons (71g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 cup (240ml) cold buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs

Other things

You will need an oven, preheated to 350F, a mixing bowl or two, a fork, spoon, a couple of hands, and a 9 x 5 pan, greased like lightning, but with butter.


  • Use the big mixing bowl.
  • Wash, pat dry – after smaking your head – and chop up the parsley.
  • Pour all the dry ingredients into the sifting thingy, except the parsley and cheese. (Make sure the sifting thingy is placed over the bowl, or you’ll be sorry at the mess and waste…)
  • Find out that you have no asiago cheese.
  • Rummage around the dairy tray in the fridge and extract a sealed packet of fontina, made by monks in that Abbeye you visited in the Eastern Townships of Quebec on one of your road trips.
  • Search the internet with the search term “replacement for asiago cheese”. Discover and learn many options for replacement for asiago cheese. None of them are fontina.
  • Look closely at the packet of fontina. Find out that it is 157gms in weight.
  • Check recipe and learn that you require 190gms of fontina.
  • Sigh, deeply.
  • Shrug resignedly.
  • Slit open the packet.
  • Use a shredder thing to shred the fontina into the flour.
  • Add parsley.
  • Mix up a bit.
  • Fight through the business of measuring Unsalted Cold Butter Into Tablespoons as chronicled in the Cranberry Scones Recipe.
  • Actually, at this point the dough should look very much like the scone dough. (That sounds like good name for a rock band – The Scone Doughs – very 80s punk ska)

Part 2 of the Preparation

  • Take another, smaller bowl.
  • Oh, put that unsalted butter back into the fridge.
  • Into this smaller bowl, ask the party of the second part, viz The Beloved Bangalan, to crack the contents of l’œuf (egg, in English).
  • Add the sour cream into the eggs.
  • Take a fork and whisk the egg and buttermilk mixture until you get a creamy custardly fluid.
  • Pour the custardly fluid into the dry mix.
  • Use the fork to sort of mix the mixes together until you’ve had enough of trying to make it actually mix.
  • Discard the fork and use your hands to make a lovely, sticky, slightly liquidy dough.
  • Pour out the dough into a greased loaf pan (the 9 x 5 thingy you used for the banana bread)
  • Shove the tray into the oven and set timer for 50 minutes.
  • At around the 47.84675 minute mark, check that toothpick (or knife, keep it simple and cheap and environmentally responsible – KISCER)

The Final Product

Should look like this.

It should taste, salty, peppery, a bit dense. (Not like me!)

Mine came out a bit greasy, prolly because I got disgruntled at the Cold Unsalted Butter measured in tablespoons. Eyeballing it may have made this butterer than was necessary. Once it set the next day, it was fine.

Try this! It’s not a bad option for a savory option. Try other cheeses, maybe, basil instead of parsley. I wonder how this would be with coriander, or dill. With added walnuts, for a bit of crunch, maybe?

I know it looks like fruit cake, so I wonder if I could add cranberries to it, or raisins?

What do you think?

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