Man (or woman) cannot live on bread alone. But you might be able to live on bread if you enhance it a bit –  add a ball of fresh mozzarella, loads of butter and a little garlic for good measure and you darn near have a meal. This month our Blogger C.L.U.E. Society had us on the hunt for celebratory food. I was assigned to Christine of The Mom Chef: Taking on Magazines and had no problem identifying food that fit into this category. If you are not familiar with Christine’s Blog, she started it back in 2009 when she realized that maybe some of these recipes featured in the magazines moms and food enthusiasts flock to for advice and inspiration don’t always make the cut in the real kitchen. She started tackling recipes one by one and with each recipe gives her tips for making it a success in your kitchen.

Cheesy Garlic Blooming Loaf

Follow the cross-hatch pattern on the bread to make cuts for stuffing the bread with cheese

If you spend anytime browsing social media you have been seeing a whole lot of bread stuffed and baked with things this past year. I’m of the opinion all you need to be happy at the end of a long day is a good loaf of bread, cheese and a bottle wine. It was pretty much a no-brainer when I saw Christine’s post on Cheesy Garlic Blooming Loaf. It checked all my boxes of celebratory food – cheese and bread. Christine had excellent directions and suggestions on what she would do next time, so I followed her advice and bought fresh mozzarella and baked the bread about a few minutes longer. The end result was a beautiful blooming bread filled with ooey-gooey cheese, wafts of garlic and a little chive to balance out the richness. Not only is this bread worthy of a celebration, you can make it on a weeknight and don’t you agree that we all need a few more weeknight celebrations.

Cheese Garlic Blooming Loaf

Succumb to the ooze – you know you want to dig in!

For more culinary inspiration for your celebrations make sure to visit the rest of the Blogger C.L.U.E. group –

One more tip – pair this with a special occasion wine like the Alban Vineyards 2012 Patrina Alban Estate Syrah. This is the entry level wine from Alban and it features dark juicy fruits without being too jammy. The nose is floral with hints of violet and spices. It is an all around lovely wine that is drinking well now. It retails between $50-55 and can be found at Dan’s Wine Shop in Palm Desert or online at K & L Wines.

2012 Patrina Alban Estate Syrah

Nothing says a celebration more than popping open a special bottle of wine like this 2012 Patrina Alban Estate Syrah

Cheesy Garlic Blooming Loaf
Prep time

Cook time

Total time


Recipe type: Appetizer

  • 1 round loaf of sourdough bread
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ cup butter at room temperature
  • 1 ball of fresh mozzarella cheese
  • chives or basil to garnish

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Slice the round of bread in a criss-cross pattern, partway through the loaf leafing it all connected. (You can follow the cross-hatching on the top of the loaf for a guide for cutting)
  3. Mix the garlic powder and butter together, then spread it into the cuts that were made in the loaf.
  4. Stuff the cut areas with the strips of cheese.
  5. Place the loaf on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until the bread is warmed through and the cheese is melted. Top with chives or basil.