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Handbrot mit Speck und Käse | Bake to the roots

German “Handbrot” with Bacon and Cheese – Christmas Market Classic

  • Author: Bake to the roots
  • Prep Time: 45m
  • Cook Time: 30m
  • Total Time: 25h
  • Yield: 6
  • Category: Bread
  • Cuisine: German


Delicious classic you get on almost every Christmas market: Handbrot with Bacon and Cheese


For the dough:
5.3 oz. (150g) potatoes, cooked
9.9 oz. (280g) lukewarm water
0.3 oz. (9g) fresh yeast
9.2 oz. (260g) spelt flour (Type 630)
4.6 oz. (130g) spelt flour (Type 1050)
3.9 oz. (110g) wholemeal spelt flour
2 tsp. salt
For the filling:
8.9 oz. (250g) bacon, diced
7 oz. (200g) gouda, grated
3.5 oz. (100g) cheddar, grated
For the dip:
7 oz. (200g) sour cream
2-3 tbsp. chives, chopped
some lemon juice
salt, pepper


1. Cook the potato(es) in some salted water until done and then let cool down. Peel, add to a large bowl and mash with a fork. Set aside. Crumble the yeast and add to the lukewarm water – mix until dissolved. Add together with the three types of spelt flour to the bowl and mix – knead for about 6 minutes, then add the salt and knead 3-4 minutes more. The dough will be soft but should come off the sides of the bowl easily. Cover and let rise for 1 hour at room temperature, then place in the fridge for 22-23 hours.
2. On the day of baking cut the bacon in small dices and fry in a pan until lightly browned. Let drain on a piece of paper to remove some of the fat. Grate the cheeses and set aside.
3. Take the dough out of the fridge and let warm up at room temperature for about 10 minutes. Place on a floured surface and roll out a rectangle of about 20×10 inches (50x25cm) – the dough will be sticky, so use a good amount of flour if needed. Add the fried bacon and cheese in the middle of the rectangle (see pictures) and fold the sides over that filling to seal them in. Press the edges together to make sure nothing gets out. Flip that log upside down so the seam is on the bottom and place on a piece of baking parchment. Use the handle of a wooden spoon to divide that log into 6 equal sized packages by pressing it into the dough in 5 spots. Sprinkle with some flour. Use a sharp knife to cut the packages diagonally on top until you see some of the fillings. Cover everything and let rest in a warm place for about 30 minutes.
4. Preheat the oven (including a baking sheet) to 480°F (250°C). As soon as the dough has risen long enough pull the filled bread with the baking parchment onto the baking sheet. Sprinkle some water (2-3 tablespoons) on the bottom of the oven and close the oven door immediately so the developing steam cannot escape. Reduce the heat to 445°F (230°C) and bake for 28-30 minutes until the bread is nicely browned. Remove the “Handbrot” from the oven and let cool down a bit on a wire rack.
5. For the dip mix the sour cream with chives, season with lemon juice, salt, and pepper to your liking. Serve with the still warm bread and enjoy.


Adapted from

Keywords: Handbrot, filled bread, cheese, bacon, German Christmas market

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