Tag Archives: Breads

I’m Still Alive!

Hello Everyone!  Long time, no blog post, eh?  Sorry about that.

For those of you who have left me comments or sent me wonderful, kind E-mails, thank you!  If I haven’t yet responded, I promise I haven’t forgotten.  I have a lot to go through, but I’ll respond to them all as soon as I can! :)

Now that winter is almost over (FINALLY!), I plan on spending some extra time cooking, experimenting and blogging!  I don’t know about you, but I really hate the winter.  It’s cold. It’s gloomy.  It makes me turn into a lazy, crabby lady.  RAWR!

Oh, and I’m on a diet.  Double RAWR! haha

My laziness aside, I have a few other things I wanted to share with you guys!

First, Dhokla!  I wanted to share a photo of this beautiful, Indian besan (chickpea flour) cake.  This particular dhokla won me a $100 bet with Piyush.  Silly husband should know better than to challenge me on anything cake related. Haha!

Look for the recipe coming soon!

besan cake, indian besan cake, dhokla, besan dhokla

Gujarati Dhokla

Second, our tickets are booked for India!  We’ll be leaving here on October 11, 2013 and will be spending 5 glorious weeks abroad.  I’m excited!  The planning isn’t entirely finished yet, but a trip to Darjeeling is definitely in the itinerary. After all, it is one of my favorite places on this Earth. Continue reading

Breadcrumb Cookies…Holiday Edition

I realize Christmas has come and gone, and I also realize (as of today!) King’s Hawaiian has had my recipe for Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies with Macadamia Nuts and Holiday Sprinkles posted on their blog for well over a week now, yet I haven’t blogged about it.  I wanted to share the recipe with you all, dear readers, but was waiting until it was posted on their blog.

How it escaped me that it had been posted, I’ll never know.  But, it’s all good!  I’m going to share now!

King's Hawaiian Breadcrumb Christmas Cookies!

King’s Hawaiian Breadcrumb Christmas Cookies!

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Chicken Sausage, Pesto and Gruyere Croissant Rolls…and a Giveaway!

Giveaway is now over!  Sadly, I didn’t get a response from Emily R. before the Jan. 2 deadline, so I have to pick a new winner.  Emily, if you read this…send me a message!  I can’t send you the sausages, but I’d love to send you a little something else! 

New winner:  Congratulations to commenter #3 (picked via random.org), tcarolinep!!!  I’ll be sending you an email! 

It’s no secret that my family loves cinnamon rolls.  Especially my Grandmother’s homemade cinnamon rolls.  Oh man!  They’re soft and doughy, sweet–but not too sweet–they’re everything you could ever want in a cinnamon roll…and more!

Because I work on Christmas this year, I won’t have time to go to Grandma’s and have a taste of her fluffy cinnamon rolls, nor will I have time to whip up a pan of my own.  Instead, I plan on making Piyush a quick and easy recipe using Gold’n Plump Chicken Sausages, pesto, gruyere and pre-packaged croissant roll dough.

Freshly baked Chicken Sausage Rolls

Freshly baked Chicken Sausage Rolls

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Masala Bread Upma: Indian Comfort Food

Masala Bread Upma

As the seasons begin to change and the leaves fall from the trees, I am no longer happy with simple sandwiches or cold cereals at breakfast-time.  Instead, I find myself craving warm and satisfying meals. I want comfort food…and this Masala Bread Upma is just that.

I created this dish using King’s Hawaiian Sweet Rolls; and let me tell you, their subtle sweetness compliments the warm Indian spices perfectly!

You can learn more about this dish and check out the recipe on the King’s Hawaiian Blog

I hope everyone had a very happy and adventurous Halloween!  Time just flies by so quickly.  Before we know it Thanksgiving will be here…and I’ll be another year closer to 30!  YIKES!

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Potato Rolls: Bring on the Buns!!!

In my last post I mentioned saving the water that you boil your potatoes in to use for making bread.

I didn’t know if I would have time today to show you want to do with it.  I had some serious cake baking that needed to get done and even though I’m a super duper multi-tasker I didn’t want to bite off more than I could chew (haha!).  Well, I got into a cake bakin’ groove and figured that whipping up a quick batch of buns would be no problem.  I love baking bread.  I would even go as far as to say that I love baking bread more than I love eating bread…and that says something! :)

My grandma R. makes fabulous bread.

Grandma R., the ultimate bread baker.

Some of my earliest memories are of her taking the rolls out of the oven,  slathering them with gobs of butter and homemade strawberry jam, and giving them to us kids to eat.  And man…did we eat!  Back then I never paid any attention to grandma’s bread baking process, and to be honest all I really remember is having to wait FOREVER for the dough to rise.  FOR-EV-ER.  But as I got older my impatience subsided…kind of… and my interest in baking began to increase.  I asked grandma for her bread recipe.  She said the recipe was her mother’s, and that she’d love to teach me how to make it.  So one day while my cousin was home from college for Christmas break, grandma came over and taught us both how bread dough should feel when you’ve added enough flour.  She taught us how to shape the rolls and loaves and most importantly, how to make cinnamon rolls!   This post isn’t about that recipe though.  I’m sure sometime I’ll share it on this blog, but today is not the day.  This post, instead, is about a little bit of information grandma told me a couple weeks ago.

Mom had brought grandma and grandpa over for the day and while I was baking grandpa his lavender chocolate macarons (he loves those things!), grandma was looking though some old magazines I had.  There must have been a recipe or something that caused her to remember, I’m not sure. She told me that when her mom made bread she sometimes would save the water that she boiled potatoes in and added it to the dough instead of milk. She didn’t have the recipe, but gosh, would she like one.  Thanks to the magic of Google, I was able to fulfill her request.

Potato water, with all it’s starchy goodness, really adds some nice moistness to the dough.  The rolls came out pretty light and they tasted like little pillows of pure bliss.  One note, if anyone decides to try this wonderful recipe, you should only refrigerate potato water for about 24 hours.  If you keep it any longer it may sweeten and really mess with the taste of your bread.   Another quick note I have about bread baking is that anyone can do it!!!  It’s so easy and really doesn’t take a lot of time at all.  Less than 75 cents for a loaf of bread sounds pretty awesome too, doesn’t it!?

The Recipe

Potato Dough Rolls (adapted from The Kitchn)

(I made 12 big rolls.  This could easily make 15-20 though)

  • 1 cup boiling potato water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon lemon or orange zest (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 cups flour (I used closer to 5 1/2)

Directions

  • In a big bowl whisk the boiling potato water, 1/2c. sugar, salt butter and zest together and let cool.
  • In a separate, little bowl combine the warm water, 1/2 teaspoon sugar and yeast. Let it sit and mingle for about 10 minutes or until foamy. (*note* when adding live yeast to warm water, make sure the temperature of the water doesn’t exceed 140 degrees F.  It’ll kill your yeast.  Also, I usually skip this proofing step and throw all my wet ingredients together first and then add the yeast, sugar and flour.  I’m just a bread bakin’ rebel, I guess.  I’ve never had problems doing it this way but someday I’m sure my yeast will have entered into retirement and my bread won’t rise properly.  So if you don’t want to risk it…proof it!).

Proof (haha) that my yeast is good!

  • In a large bowl whisk the potato water mixture and the yeast mixture together. Add the eggs and 2 cups of the flour. Whisk well, then stir in the other 2 cups of flour with a wooden spoon. The dough should be a little on the sticky side.  I didn’t knead it, and instead left it sit on the counter for a couple hours to rise.  The original recipe said to cover and refrigerate it, up to several days.  That’s a good idea…but I want it now!  I’m all about the instant gratification.
  • When you want to bake them, shape into balls and place side by side in a greased 9×13 pan (I used a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper). Coat hands lightly with flour to roll. Let’s talk about shaping the rolls, quick.  I want to show you Grandma R.’s way of doing things.  Grandma pinches off a piece of the dough and quick sets it in a bowl of flour.  Don’t roll it around in there, you just want a little extra so the dough won’t stick to everything.  Then she makes a circle with her thumb and her pointer finger.  She simply pushes the dough through the hole.

view from the top

view from the bottom, after the dough has been pushed through

This creates something called a “gluten cloak”…and that’s exactly what you want!  You’ll get a nice smooth roll with the untidy ends tucked underneath.  Put the rolls on the cookie sheet or in the pan and then lightly press down on them.  This will also help with the shaping.

  • Let rise, covered until doubled.

ready to rise!

Ready for the oven

  • You may want to brush with milk or cream before baking, or a mixture of egg yolk and milk or water to create a shiny roll.  I don’t do that, instead I brush each roll with ghee when it’s done cooking, not before.

ghee = Indian style clarified butter. Use real butter if you don't have this little jar of awesomeness in your pantry...it'll do the trick.

  • Bake at 375°F for about 20 minutes, depending on size of rolls.  **Oops!  I didn’t read this part of the directions.  I baked mine at 350 degrees F for about 17 minutes.  They turned out fantastic!**

After all that cake baking…

bottom layer crumb-coated!

I realized I hadn’t eaten anything all day except a couple tastes of frosting and cake batter….quality control, you know? I was super excited to take a shower and sit down to a glass of tea and 1/2 a roll smothered in strawberry jam…

I deserved it! :)

After I scarfed down my roll, my brother called.  He and his wife stopped over for a little while.  My nephew, Nathan, was with them too.  I haven’t seen him in a long time and I couldn’t believe how cute he’s gotten!  Here, take a look…

Michael with Nathan

I was too busy taking pictures of Nathan that I didn’t catch anyone eating the rolls, but I assure you..rolls were eaten (Piyush had 3 in one sitting!).  And they were enjoyed by all!