23 October 2011

Herbed Dinner Rolls

I'm slowly trying to branch out with the whole 'homemade bread' thing. Next after pizza dough was dinner rolls, which I think turned out quite well. The recipe for these came from a video that I stumbled upon online (linked at the bottom), and seeing them made via video really helped ease my concerns that I was doing it wrong.

In a large bowl put together the following items:
  • 1 pouch of active yeast >> or 2 1/4 tsp, as per the jar. This is the regular, non-quick rise yeast
  • 1 cup of very warm (not hot) water
  • A pinch of sugar
Let the yeast sit for 6 to 9 minutes. It should bubble a bit and get kind of foamy.

  • 1/4 cup of melted butter
  • 2 cups of flour >> I used white All Purpose flour, though next time I'm going to try mixing in some whole wheat
  • 2 tbs sugar >> Next time I'm going to try honey
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt >> We only have sea salt, which is saltier than table salt. I only used about a 1/2 tsp of the sea salt because I prefer stuff less salted
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp dill
>> Note: I skipped the thyme because we didn't have it and skipped the dill because I don't care for it. Instead, I just added the oregano and a full teaspoon of chopped fresh rosemary. It seems like you could take a few liberties with the herbs if you wanted to.

Mix the ingredients above with a spoon until they have just started to come together.

Add another 1 1/2 cups of flour in 1/2 cup increments. I had to start using my hands to get it to come together. Knead it for 2 minutes - it should end up pretty sticky.

Place a tea towel (I used a dampened one) over the top of the bowl and put it in a warm place. Leave it for an hour. It should double in size.

Punch the dough down (one big one right into the centre). Take it out of the bowl, put it on a lightly floured cutting board, and flatten it into a disc (you could use a rolling pin, but hands work too). Using a big, sharp knife, cut it into six pieces, pizza style. Each of the six 'slices' are then ripped in half, and each half pulled into three rolled balls (so, each of the six slices becomes six small balls - you'll have thirty-six in the end).

Take a lightly greased muffin tin and in each pocket place three of the small balls. Recover with the tea towel and allow to rise in a warm place for approximately 45 minutes. They should double in size. >>I was concerned that mine weren't rising enough, so for the last twenty minutes I turned the oven on to 200 and let them rise on top. This seemed to work out alright.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Melt a bit more butter (maybe 1/4 cup?) and brush on top of the buns (>>I will try omitting this step next time just to avoid so much butter. If it's really that integral to them browning on top, maybe I could try using olive oil instead?). Bake for 16 - 20 minutes, and cool on a wire rack.

We had a couple of these last night, and then I froze the rest. I will update when I know how they are from the freezer.

Original recipe/video here.

07 October 2011

Quick whole wheat pizza dough

Culled together from a few different websites. It's enough for one large pizza.

1 package quick rise yeast
3/4 cup warm water >>not too warm, just 'a bit warmer than lukewarm', according to Sarah
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour >>you have to add a bit of regular flour, otherwise it will come out too tough.
1 tsp salt
1 tsp honey >>use honey instead of sugar for a crispier crust

  1. Dissolve the package of yeast in the water and leave for 5ish minutes. It should get a little foamy/frothy on the top.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and mix together with a spoon.
  3. Knead for 2 - 3 minutes.
  4. Leave in a warm place for an hour or hour and a half. Ideally on top of a stove with a bit of heat in it, but on top of the fridge is also okay. >>true story: I made a dough at 12:30 and didn't come home to make pizza until 5:30 and it turned out okay because my roommate punched it down a few times. Hells yes.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  6. Clean off some counter space and drizzle it with a bit of olive oil. Don't form the pizza in flour, otherwise it'll end up too dry.
  7. Use "Domino's Method" for spreading out pizza dough (>>ask me sometime and I'll show ya).
  8. Cook for 10ish minutes, add your toppings, and then cook for another 5 to 10 minutes
Enjoy! I liked this one because it didn't get too doughy in the middle.