Jocelyn’s still on her much-deserved vacation, so you get me for a little while longer.  Don’t worry, I won’t let the unchecked power go to my head or anything.  I’m not sure I’d know how to mess with how the site looks or such anyway.  :-D

This time you get another attempt to make one cheesy-bread-thing that turned into something slightly different!  The results are definitely worthwhile, though.  These breadsticks are best straight out of the oven, of course, but they’re also good up to a day old, especially if you pop them in the microwave for a second first.  The mozzarella gives them a great texture, and the parmesan gives them a lively flavor that means eight of these barely last ten minutes.  Plus, unlike my previous breadstick recipes, these breadsticks are soft and chewy, but don’t require a mold or even a stand mixer to make — both definite plusses.

Making these is pretty straightforward; you want to encourage the dough to rise in a humid oven so they aren’t too dense, but other than that there’s nothing too sensitive about the recipe.  Just make sure to time it so they’ll be done when there’s people to eat them fresh so you aren’t tempted to eat them all yourself (I’ll confess to making several meals out of these when I really should have been eating something more nutritionally balanced!).

And now, our feature presentation:

Mozzarella-Parmesan Breadsticks

Yield:  8 large, soft breadsticks


  • 2 1/4 cup dough mix, plus a little more for kneading
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/4 tsp guar gum
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 T sugar, divided
  • 3/4 tsp italian seasoning
  • 3/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 T shortening
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella
  • 2 T grated parmesan
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 2 T melted butter for brushing the baked breadsticks


1.  Preheat the oven to warm, and put a tray of warm water on the bottom rack (you’ll use this to make the breadsticks poof really well later).

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the yeast, hot water, and 2 tsp sugar; set aside to proof till bubbly.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients — dough mix, xanthan gum, guar gum, salt, italian seasoning, garlic powder, and the remaining 1 tsp sugar.

2.  With a pastry cutter or long-tined fork, cut in the shortening until crumbly.  Then, use a fork to mix the mozzarella and parmesan into the same bowl, like so:

3.  Now, add the egg and the proofed yeast mixture to the dry mix, and use a fork to bring the dough mostly together.  Once you’ve worked most of the dry mix in, turn the whole mess out onto a clean work surface very lightly dusted with dough mix, and knead it together with your hands until it looks like finished dough.  It may not feel as finished if you’re using pretty thick pre-grated cheese, like I am, but don’t worry, it’ll bake fine.

4.  Lightly grease a cookie sheet.  You want to cut the dough into eight roughly equal pieces; I do this by gently rolling the dough ball into a thick, squat rope, then cutting it into quarters.  Then I take each quarter and turn it before cutting it in half so that I’m cutting along a line of symmetry (you’ll see what I mean if you do the same thing).  But, whatever method gets you eighths works just fine.  Gently roll and pinch each piece into a breadstick, proportioned about like in the first picture below, and arrange the breadsticks on the cookie sheet.  Then, turn off your warmed oven, and put the cookie sheet on the top rack in the oven (that is, over your pan of warm water) till the dough is risen double or so.  It should take between 30 and 60 minutes.

5.  Once the dough’s risen, take the cookie sheet back out of the oven, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Bake the breadsticks for 18-20 minutes in the preheated oven.  When they’re almost done, go ahead and melt the butter; then just brush the butter generously on the warm breadsticks, and serve them fresh.  Hope you enjoy!