Monday, January 18, 2016

Still Workning on Perfecting My Bagel

I made bagels again last night. Two things I realize during this attempt – you need plenty of flour, and the bagels need to rise and get quite puffy before boiling them.

The first time I tried this recipe, using the exact amount of flour called for, I measured the flour by measuring it into the cup and using a knife to leave the top. I ended up with a very sticky dough. Last night when I made these, I scooped the flour with my measuring cup. The flour is more condensed that way. The dough was stiffer and less sticky. However, I think they still needed more flour to achieve the proper firmness so that the bagels puff up without collapsing when lifting it from the counter to place it into the boiling water.


The upside is, this recipe is mostly flour, which isn’t too expensive since we buy it in 50 pound bags at Costco. So, I don’t have to think that I am wasting too much money in my bagel experimentation.


The super upside, although my bagels are not yet perfected, they do taste delicious!



Saturday, January 16, 2016

Learning from a Baker

Homemade Bagels Are a Breeze!
Or so I am told.
I made bagels twice this week (two different recipes),
and I have not found them yet easy to make.

Mine are shriveled and not so full and puffy as they should be.

I like this recipe: Bruce Ezzell’s Bagels
 Bruce Ezzell has a bakery; I think that he know his stuff.
And I trust that if I keep at it, I will learn to make lovely bagels, too.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Cinnamon Rolls

  The Pioneer Woman's cinnamon rolls
 Her recipe makes 9-8 pans of cinnamon rolls.
I cut it in half and made three pans of 8 rolls each.
Total of 24 rolls


Trust me, 
These are not only GOOD, 
They are also NOW my new 
BEST, 
EASIEST, and 
FAVORITE 
go to cinnamon rolls. 

INGREDIENTS:
  • 2 cups Whole Milk 
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil (I used butter)
  • 1/2 cup Sugar 
  • 1 package Active Dry Yeast, 0.25 Ounce Packets (I used a tablespoon)
  • 4 cups (Plus 1 Cup Extra, Reserved) All-purpose Flour 
  • 1/2 teaspoon (heaping) Baking Powder 
  • 1/2 teaspoon (scant) Baking Soda 
  • 1/2 Tablespoon (heaping) Salt 
  • Plenty Of Melted Butter 
  • 1 cups Sugar 
  • Generous Sprinkling Of Cinnamon

MAPLE FROSTING:
  • 1/2 bag Powdered Sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoons Maple Flavoring 
  • 1/4 cup Milk 
  • 1/8 cup Melted Butter 
  • 1/8 cup Brewed Coffee (It's the coffee that makes this so good!)
  • Sprinkle of Salt 

For the dough, scald the milk, vegetable oil, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat (to just below a boil). Turn off heat and leave to cool 45 minutes to 1 hour.

When the mixture is lukewarm to warm, but NOT hot (110-115 degrees F), sprinkle in the yeast on top (stir it in if you like) and let it sit on the milk for a few minutes. Add 4 cups of the flour. Stir until just combined, then cover with a clean kitchen towel, and set aside in a relatively warm place for 1 hour.


After 1 hour, remove the towel and add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and the remaining 1/2 cup flour. Stir thoroughly to combine.



Use the dough right away, or place in a mixing bowl and refrigerate for up to 3 days, punching down the dough if it rises to the top of the bowl. (Note: dough is easier to work with if it’s been chilled for at least an hour or so beforehand.)

~ Dough after chilling for 1 hour ~

Preheat the oven to 375°F. To assemble the rolls, remove the dough from the pan/bowl. Sprinkle surface generously with flour (the dough is sticky if not chilled first). Roll the dough into a large rectangle, about 30 x 10 inches. The dough should be rolled very thin.


To make the filling, 1/2 - 1 cup of the melted butter over the surface of the dough. Spread the butter evenly.  Sprinkle 1 cup (or more if you like) of the sugar over the butter. Generously sprinkle with ground cinnamon.


Beginning at the end farthest from you, roll the rectangle tightly towards you. Use both hands and work slowly, being careful to keep the roll tight. When you reach the end, pinch the seam together and flip the roll so that the seam is face down. When you’re finished, you’ll wind up with one long buttery, cinnamony, sugary, gooey log. Slip a cutting board underneath the roll and with a sharp knife, make 1/2-inch slices.

Pour a couple of teaspoons of melted butter into disposable foil cake pans and swirl to coat. Place the sliced rolls in the pans, being careful not to overcrowd. (Each pan will hold 7 to 9 rolls.)

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Cover all the pans with a kitchen towel and set aside to rise on the counter top for at least 20 minutes before baking.

Remove the towel and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown. Don’t allow the rolls to become overly brown.

While the rolls are baking, make the maple icing: In a large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk, butter, coffee, and salt. Splash in the maple flavoring. Whisk until very smooth. Taste and add in more maple, sugar, butter, or other ingredients as needed until the icing reaches the desired consistency. The icing should be somewhat thick but still very pourable.

Remove pans from the oven. Immediately drizzle icing over the top. Be sure to get it all around the edges and over the top. As they sit, the rolls will absorb some of the icing’s moisture and flavor. They only get better with time.