Cheese bread recipe is one of the most appreciated in Italy: Italians really love combining flavors of bread and the countless quantity of different cheeses available on their territory, so creating a recipe that puts together both dishes was a natural step.
The "Crescia" is a typical recipe of Marche and Umbria, two regions in the middle of Italy. In
Umbria it is called "Torta di Pasqua". It's the typical
bread of Easter time. It is rich in cheeses and great with salami
and ham. Crescia has the same shape as "Panettone", the Italian Christmas cake, but it is salty and more
The preparation of Crescia is handed down from generation to generation and each family has its own secret that makes the recipe unique. So it is difficult to honor the traditional recipe. Crescia or Torta di Pasqua is a tasty alternative to regular bread: nobody could say no to it !
There are many variants of this recipe, depending of which kind of Italian cheese you may want to use or you can find at your local grocery. The most used are obviously products like Parmigiano cheese, with ideal replacements such as "Pecorino" (with a stronger flavor).
But of course you can use your fantasy and try new combinations in order to create a brand new recipe: we suggest to try to put inside the mix a good piece of Italian typical cheese Caciocavallo or the famous Asiago.
Step 1: In order to make a great cheese bread recipe, dissolve the malt in milk. Put in a bowl, or in a mixer bowl, the flour, parmigiano cheese, yeast, milk with malt and start to stir. Add the eggs, one by one, pepper and salt. Add aslo the olive oil slowly and stir till the dough will be smooth. Then add the cubes of pecorino cheese.
Step 2: Tip the dough over a floured surface and shape it into a ball. Then oil a high cylindrical mold and put the Crescia with the smoothest face on top into it. Brush the surface of the dough with butter and let it rise in a warm place for 2 hours and half , till the dough has grown to the top of the mold.
Step 3: Preheat the oven at 360° F and put a small bowl with water. Before putting the Crescia in, spray the oven with water. Bake for 50-60 minutes. Put a toothpick into the Crescia, and take it out. If it is dry, the Crescia is cooked. Take it out of the oven, out of the mold, and let it cool on a rack.
Wait for it to be completely cold before cutting. Then I suggest to warm the slices up in the oven or in the microwave. Serve with ham, salami and cooked vegetables.