Vegemite and Cheese Pull-Apart Damper. Ask any Aussie how they feel about Vegemite and you will get much love and adoration for the savory breakfast spread. When considering what would be a great recipe to promote the Australian way of life, Vegemite had to play a leading role alongside an uncomplicated bread recipe that has been cooked in camp fires in the outback since flour was first introduced to the country. Damper is a simple leavened bread that requires very little fussing over, yet the end result is wonderfully satisfying.
Makes 1 Loaf to Serve 4 for Breakfast
360 g (123⁄4 oz) self-raising flour, well sifted
pinch of salt
240 ml (8 fl oz) lukewarm buttermilk
4 teaspoons vegemite
80 g (23⁄4 oz) grated cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), with the metal shelf positioned in the middle of the oven. Lightly grease a springform tin with a spray of non-stick cooking oil and line the bottom and sides with baking paper.
Add the flour and salt to a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Make a well in the middle of the flour and pour in the buttermilk. Using a knife, cut the liquid into the flour until a crumbly dough forms.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently to bring the dough together. Divide the dough into 12–14 rough pieces.
Mix the vegemite with 2 tablespoons of water to make it manageable and apply some vegemite to each piece of rough dough, with no precision required here. As long as each ball has a little Vegemite on it, it’s more than enough.
Place the balls back into the bowl and add the cheese. Gently mix so that the dough pieces and cheese are haphazardly stuck together. Add the cheesy vegemite balls to the prepared tin, ensuring each ball is touching. Cover the ring tin with foil.
Bake the damper in the oven for 18–22 minutes, or until golden and when the bread is tapped on the bottom it sounds hollow.
Serve whole for diners to pull it apart with their fingers.
Secrets + Tips
If you are struggling to find Vegemite, you can substitute it with marmite or promite, just don’t tell the Aussies!
Breakfast Around the World, New Holland Publishers RRP $29.99 available from all good books retailers or online www.newhollandpublishers.com