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    Taleggio and Spinach Roulade

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    Taleggio and Spinach Roulade

    This beautifully rustic bread is something I always take to a picnic if asked to bring a dish.

    • Preparation time: 40 minutes, plus 2 hours rising
    • Cooking time: 35 minutes
    • Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes, plus 2 hours rising 60 minutes 15 minutes

    Serves: 8


    • 160ml whole milk
    • 1 tsp caster sugar
    • 2 tsp dried active yeast
    • 3½ tbsp sunflower oil
    • 1 medium egg
    • 1 egg yolk
    • ½ tsp salt
    • 350g strong white bread flour
    • Filling
    • 80g crème fraîche
    • ½ tsp salt
    • 100g baby spinach leaves
    • 20g basil leaves, torn
    • 100g Pecorino cheese, grated
    • 250g Taleggio cheese, sliced
    • 100g semi-dried, marinated tomatoes
    • Glaze
    • 1 egg, beaten
    • 1 tbsp poppy seeds


    1. Heat the milk gently in a small saucepan until lukewarm; add the sugar and stir to dissolve, then add the yeast and stir. Set aside for about 10–15 minutes, until the yeast starts to froth.
    2. Place the remaining dough ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer, add the yeast and milk and work with a dough hook on slow speed for about 2 minutes. Increase to high speed and knead for another 7 minutes, by which point the dough should have turned into a smooth, shiny ball (alternatively, knead the dough by hand; this will take an extra 10–15 minutes).
    3. Transfer the dough to a large, lightly oiled bowl, cover with a wet cloth and put in a warm place. Line a 30cm x 40cm oven tray with baking parchment. After about 45 minutes, once the dough has doubled in size, transfer it to a flour-dusted surface and roll it out thinly to the size of the tray. Line the tray with the dough. Cover with the cloth and leave for 30 minutes.
    4. Once the dough has risen, cover it with the filling. Spread the crème fraîche all over, sprinkle on the salt, then scatter over the leaves, cheeses and tomatoes. Carefully picking up one of the long sides of the dough, roll it into a neat log. Sit the log on its seam so it doesn’t unravel. Cover with the tea towel and leave for 30 minutes.
    5. Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. For the glaze, brush the roulade's surface with the egg, then scatter over the poppy seeds; bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 150°C/gas 2 and cook for 25 minutes. When ready, it should be dark brown and a sharp knife should come out with some cheese on it but no dough. Take it out, allow to cool a little and slice.

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