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Sourdough Surprises: 'Satay' Pull-apart Bread

Thursday, February 20, 2014

These were fun loaves to make. I've made monkey bread only once before (in the shape of a spider for Halloween, although the "blobs" didn't come out well-defined) and I wonder why I don't do it more often. The bread is nice to look at and easy to eat too. So thanks to Sourdough Surprises for coming up with this suggestion.
I knew I wanted a savoury bread and when I spotted a packet of ready-made satay peanut sauce in my pantry, I thought why not. But the sauce is quite sweet and a little too fluid to spread, so I added some fresh chilli paste and a little more chopped peanuts. 
Satay sauce-filled sourdough pull-apart 'sun' bread
I made enough dough for two loaves, so the first one I made into a sun shape. No complicated shaping here – just a few cuts and twists. I couldn't stop pulling off the "rays" – crisp and chewy like breadsticks – to munch on!
The second loaf was a regular rectangular pull-apart bread shaped in a loaf tin. There was a little less peanut sauce for this one so I looked through the fridge for something to add bulk. It probably sounds gross but you'd be surprised how well sweet and hot peanut sauce goes with salty mozzarella cheese!
Cheese-topped sourdough pull-apart loaf
For more ideas, check out the monkey breads and pull-apart breads made by the other bakers in the Sourdough Surprises group.

Sourdough Pull-apart Breads with Peanut Sauce
Makes 2 loaves

45g mother starter (100% hydration)
75g bread flour
75g water

Mix the sponge ingredients in a jug, cover with cling film and set aside until well risen and bubbly, about 8 hours.

Final dough
250g bread flour
¼ tsp salt
1 egg
All the sponge (about 180g)
1 tbsp neutral-flavoured oil

Fillings and toppings
180g packet satay peanut sauce
Fresh chilli paste, to taste
Finely chopped roasted peanuts
Shredded mozzarella

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for the final dough. Stir together so mixture comes together. If there are dry bits, add water by the tablespoon until the mixture forms a rough dough. Cover and set aside for 20 minutes, then knead the dough (use your preferred method) until soft, smooth and elastic. Form into a ball and leave on the work surface covered with the mixing bowl until tripled in size. In warm weather, this takes 4½ hours.
Divide the dough into two equal portions. Combine the peanut sauce, chilli and chopped peanuts until it is thick but still spreadable.
To make the "sun" loaf, divide one portion of dough into two. Roll each portion out into a thin disc. Place one disc on a baking tray and spread with some of the peanut sauce; top with the other dough disc. Place a ramekin upside down in the centre and make slits (to make 16-18 sections) through both layers from the rim of the ramekin to the curved edge of the discs. Twist each section several times. 
To make the rectangular loaf, roll out the other portion of dough into a rough rectangle, about 30cm by 20cm. Spread with peanut sauce. Cut the rectangle into three 10cm strips and stack them. Cut through the stacks into squares. Arrange in a loaf tin, sprinkling mozzarella in between and around the stacks, and more on top.
Cover both loaves and set aside while the oven is preheating at 180°C. Bake the loaves until cooked through and golden, 20-25 minutes.


  1. Your sun looks gorgeous! I have a Nutella version that I've been meaning to try. Now that I don't have to convert it to sourdough (you've already done the work *smile*), I can do it.

  2. That sun bread looks amazing, I'll have to try one of those.

  3. Brilliant adaptation! Now I'm re-inspired to try another savory version; both of your pull a parts sound scrumptious and I have peanut sauce in the pantry.

  4. The sun looks perfect for an appetiser! And the satay filling sounds great!

  5. I like the twists - and creative savory filling. I can see how the mozzarella would work!

  6. Your sun bread looks so beautiful!

  7. This is pretty much amazing! I love love love that sun shape! Awesome job, Jane, as always! :)

  8. So creative! The sun bread looks beautiful.

  9. If I could award you the gold medal for our group for this month, I would! I am just dazzled by your work. Congratulations on such a gorgeous finished product!

  10. Gorgeous!! You scored a Gold medal with this one:) Lynn @ Turnips 2 Tangerines

  11. You do deserve the gold medal. What a fabulous idea. Beautiful loaves! I bet they were tasty too!

  12. I love your gorgeous breads and I bet they were as beautiful to eat as they are to look at. I totally want to try a savory version now.

  13. I have always love pull apart bread, it's so fun to just pull and and how you did your sun shape loaf!


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