The last time I posted a yeasted bread on here was back in February. That’s because I hardly cook with wheat any more. It’s a story I’ll save for another post.
We have some whole wheat flour, whole wheat berries, chapati flour (atta) and all purpose flour to use up before we can stop making wheat breads altogether. When everything wheat-based in the pantry is over (3 or 4 loaves and about 6 dozen parathas worth, methinks), we’re done. At least, I am.
Suffice to say that I’ve broken free of my bread addiction and am quite content to satiate my cravings once every couple of weeks with a slice of thin-crusted Neopolitan pizza. If I do eat something wheat-based, it had better be really really good – like these rolls.
Yesterday, I tweaked this recipe for a dinner party. I added orange zest and broke up a bar of Lindt Intense Orange Chocolate in lieu of chocolate chips. Instead of the sugar glaze, I used melted 70% dark chocolate. The rolls were soft, buttery and had just a hint of orange-infused sweetness. They would be perfect for a holiday breakfast or brunch.
(Makes 12 rolls)
Use raspberries, blueberries or raisins instead of cranberries
Replace the egg with 1/4 cup milk/plain yogurt, or 3 tbsps water plus 1 tbsp flax powder
Heat until lukewarm:
1 cup organic milk
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
Keep aside for five to ten minutes.
When the yeast gets bubbly, add
1.5 cups whole wheat flour
2.5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
a peeled and seeded orange pureed to a pulp (half cup pulp)
2 tablespoons butter (or ghee)
half tsp organic orange zest
1 tbsp date sugar (or regular sugar)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 to half cup water (start with 1/3 cup)
Knead gently until you get an elastic dough, adjusting flour and water as necessary. The dough may be slightly sticky and that’s fine.
3/4 cup chopped up dark chocolate (or chocolate chips)
**I used Lindt Intense Orange Chocolate
1/2 cup frozen cranberries
and knead some more until these ingredients are folded in. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with a tea towel and set it in a warm place to rise until almost doubled (around an hour and a half). Or leave it to rise in the fridge overnight in a lidded container.
Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. (I used a weighing scale and measured out a dozen 3.2 oz portions). Roll them into balls. Adding a drop of water to the board before rolling the balls makes them round and even. Make sure to stick the cranberries and chocolate below the surface so that they don’t burn while baking.
Arrange rolls in a greased spring form or round pan next to each other, cover the pan and leave them to rise again for about 45 minutes until nearly doubled.
Preheat the oven to 400F.
1 tbsp butter/ghee with 1 tbsp milk
until the ghee melts. Brush it all over the rolls.
Put the rolls in the oven and after 10 minutes, reduce the heat to 350F. Bake for another 30 minutes or so. Turn the pan around halfway through for even heating. Check from time to time. If the rolls start browning too much, loosely cover them with foil, shiny side out.
If a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, the rolls are done.
Let the rolls sit for five minutes, then take them out of the spring form pan and let them cool on a wire rack. Else, the steam will make them soggy. Wait until the rolls are completely cool before you glaze them.
GLAZE (optional, but so good):
In a small cup, add
3 to 4 tsp milk
2 oz. 70% dark chocolate (broken/chopped to small pieces)
1 tsp Grand Marnier or brandy (optional)
Let the chocolate melt over very gentle heat. (You can use the microwave at 70% power, stirring every 15 seconds). If you need to add extra milk, add it one teaspoon at a time, ‘cos if you add too much, the glaze will not set over the rolls. To ensure that the glaze is not too watery, add some butter or ghee with the extra milk you add. You can add sugar if you want, but I like the chocolate really dark and bitter.
Using a spoon or a mini-whisk, drizzle the glaze over the rolls. Let it come to room temperature and set.
This recipe could be tweaked to make great dinner rolls (pav) for pav bhaji.
SOFT DINNER ROLLS (Pav)
Follow the recipe above with the following changes:
Replace the orange pulp with half cup water and 2 tbsps sugar
Omit the cranberries, orange zest, chocolate.
Omit the chocolate glaze.
Brush the rolls with butter one more time after they come out of the oven.
Our entry for the Holiday edition of YeastSpotting.