I may have made a resolution about not complaining about the weather this year, but too bad! Greetings from Minnesota, where I’m freezing at my desk, so today’s a soup and bread day. In the book, we included a Portuguese Corn Bread (Broa) and an accompanying Portuguese Fish Stew (Caldeirada de Peixe) to go with it–it’s a perfect combination.
The Broa dough is simply our Master Recipe, substituting 1 1/2 cups of cornmeal (yellow or white, stone-ground or regular) for 1 1/2 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour. Bake as usual as a round loaf. In the picture above I used a lightly greased and stove-top pre-heated black cast-iron skillet (my skillet doesn’t come with a cover or I’d have tried that, see Zoe’s post about baking in covered cast-iron). Amazon carries the Lodge brand (click here to view). Here’s the Caldierada de Peixe recipe: (more…)
This tea ring is an ultra fancy cinnamon roll, baked as wreath and topped with an Eggnog Glaze. The cuts and twists of the dough make for a super-festive bread that is actually really easy to make, so don’t leave this one just for the holidays.
Mix in the flour without kneading, using a heavy-duty stand mixer (with paddle/flat beater), a Danish dough whisk, or a wooden spoon. If you’re not using a machine, you may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour. The dough will be loose but will firm up when chilled (don’t try to use it without chilling).
Cover (not airtight) and allow to rest at room temperature until the dough rises for 2 hours.
The dough can be used as soon as it’s chilled after the initial rise, or frozen for later use. Refrigerate the container and use over the next 5 days.
In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon.
Dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1 1/2 pound (small cantaloupe-size) piece. Dust the piece with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go.
Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 1/8-inch-thick rectangle, about 14 x 18 inches. As you roll out the dough, add flour as needed to prevent sticking.
Spread the butter mixture evenly over the dough.
Starting with the long side of the dough, roll it up into a log. Pinch the seam closed. Stretch the log until it is about 1 1/2 inches thick. Join the 2 ends together. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Stretch the dough to make sure you have a nice, wide opening in the middle of your wreath, but leave plenty of room around the edge.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rest at room temperature for 40 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350F, with a rack placed in the center of the oven.
Brush lightly with the egg wash. Make evenly spaced cuts all the way around the wreath about 1 inch apart. The cuts should go just about to the bottom of the ring, but not quite to the bottom.
Gently pull every other piece to the outside of the ring and then twist that piece to face up. Do the same with the remaining pieces, but have them face up on the inside of the ring. The ones on the inside of the ring may not lay flat on the baking sheet, which is fine.
Bake for 25 to 32 minutes, until golden brown and well set.
Make the glaze: In a small bowl, mix together the melted butter, 2 tablespoons egg nog, and vanilla until smooth. Add the confectioners’ sugar and mix until the mixture is smooth. Add more eggnog (or bourbon!), 1 tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency is reached. Pour the glaze over the warm braid, then serve.
Eat and enjoy!
Red Star Yeast provided yeast samples for recipe testing, and sponsors BreadIn5’s website and other promotional activities.
Christmas Stollen is a wonderful German baking tradition this time of year. A sweet loaf that is studded with dried fruit, spiced with cardamom and a special treat of almond paste runs through it. Once it comes out of the oven it is traditional to slather the warm loaf in butter then roll it in sugar, but we skip the extra butter and dust it with a thick layer of confectioners’ sugar to look like the snow outside. This loaf actually holds up very well for a couple of days and that makes it a great gift for the holidays. We’ll have one more Christmas post in December, from Sarah Kieffer– an inventive Swedish Tea Ring with Eggnog Glaze.
Hawaiian Buns are a delicious treat: they are soft, and sweet, and perfect for both snacking on or serving with a warm meal. The most famous are, of course, the orange package of King’s Hawaiian buns found in your local supermarket. While the supermarket brand doesn’t contain pineapple or honey, those two ingredients were often used by Portuguese immigrants in Hawaii in the early 1900’s when refined sugar was scarce or too expensive to purchase. Our no-knead brioche and challah doughs already contained honey, so with just a little tweaking (and some pineapple juice and vanilla), we found ourselves with a great version of these famous buns, just in time for Thanksgiving dinner.
We have more Thanksgiving bun recipes on our site (Herb Crock Pot Dinner Rolls! Soft Pull Apart Buns!) and you can find links to them here. We also have a Thanksgiving round up post, complete with many of our sweet breads, plus a homemade-bread stuffing recipe, that you can check out here.
Fresh pineapple juice will not work here; the enzymes in fresh destroy the yeast. Some people heat the fresh juice with good results (this will kill the enzymes), but I’ve found canned to be the easiest (and cheapest) method. The pineapple juice can inhibit the yeast, so we use extra here to insure a good rise, and soft, tender buns. Having your eggs at room temperature will also help the dough rise quicker. The juice can also cause the melted butter to curdle when mixed, so I keep them separate until everything is mixed together. You can shape the buns the night before serving and let them do a slow rise overnight in the refrigerator.
1 cup [240 g] lukewarm water (100F or below)
1/2 cup [120 g] canned pineapple juice (fresh will not work here, see note above), room temperature
2 tablespoons yeast
1/4 cup [50 g] granulated sugar
1 cup [2 sticks | 226 g] unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup [170 g] honey
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
5 eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon kosher salt
7 cups [990 g] all-purpose flour
In a liquid measuring cup, mix together the water, canned pineapple juice, yeast, and sugar.
Pour in the flour and begin to mix, slowly adding the water/pineapple mixture. Use a Danish dough whisk to combine all the ingredients together (this can also be done in a heavy-duty stand mixer fitted with a paddle). The dough will be loose but will firm up when chilled; don’t try to work with it before chilling.
Cover (not airtight), allow to rest at room temperature for 2 hours, and then refrigerate.
The dough can be used as soon as it’s thoroughly chilled, at least 3 hours. Refrigerate the container and use over the next 3 days.
On baking day, cut off 1-pound (grapefruit-size) piece of dough and divide the dough into 8 pieces. Quickly shape the pieces into balls. Place the balls in a greased 8 x 8-inch baking dish, or an 8-inch cake pan. If you want more than 8 buns, as shown in the photos, double the quantity of dough used, or pull cut 2.5 ounce pieces to make the amount needed. If you want pull-apart buns, nestle the buns close together. Cover and allow to rest for 1 hour. Brush the tops with egg white (this will give them some shine).
Bake the buns at 350F for 16 minutes. Brush the tops of the buns with melted butter, then bake for 5 to 8 more minutes, until the tops are golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven, and brush the tops with more melted butter.
People often ask us why we only used all-purpose flour (where we called for white flour) in The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Why not “bread” flour, which is higher in protein and is often considered traditional in bread? Well, not in all traditions. French baguettes, for example, are typically made with lower-protein flour for a more tender, and less chewy crumb. And we knew most of our potential book users already had all-purpose flour in the house. But sometimes, a stiffer dough is desirable, like when something really needs to hold its shape, like these wreath-shaped, well… bagels. You can always swap bread flour into our recipes that call for all-purpose, just by adding a little extra water (details below).
The school year is upon us, and many parents and kids alike are finding themselves in a completely new routine. Our children are trying to navigate distance learning, hybrid learning (or something in-between) while parents are juggling jobs and their new teaching career. It’s wild, and often overwhelming, to say the least.
Since our kids are now home more, they are encouraged to take on more responsibility; we all have to pitch in to make our Covid lifestyles work. One area they are taking charge in is the kitchen: chopping vegetables, baking bread, and learning to use the Crock-Pot are all on their to-do lists.
We have several recipes on our site for Crock-Pot breads, and they have been a huge hit. But we’ve found that teaching our kids to use the Crock-Pot is a win-win: it’s easier to use than the oven, and there is less chance of getting burnt transferring items in and out of it. Combine it with the ease of our no-knead bread, and the options are endless.
If you head to our Breadin5 Instagram page, you can watch our stories of River (below) mixing the brioche dough and shaping the monkey bread. We’ve made this bread extra-simple by topping it with store-bought caramel sauce that is poured on after baking, so you don’t have to worry about transferring and flipping hot caramel.
Mix in flour without kneading, using a spoon, a Danish Dough Whisk or a heavy-duty stand mixer (with paddle). The dough will be loose but will firm up when chilled.
Cover (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature until dough rises for approximately 2 hours. Then refrigerate for at least four hours before first use; it is easier to handle when thoroughly chilled. This dough can be stored for up to 5 days in the fridge. Beyond that, the dough stores well in the freezer for up to four weeks in an airtight container, in one-pound portions. When using frozen dough, thaw and use as instructed.
For the filling
Line your Crock-Pot with parchment paper. You will use this paper to remove the monkey bread from the pot, so make sure it is coming up the sides of the Crock Pot (it may have some creases, but this won’t affect the bread baking).
Sprinkle the surface of your dough with flour and take out a 1 1/2 pound piece.
Divide the dough into about 32 pieces, as even in size as possible, but perfection is not needed here.
Roll the dough into small balls. If the dough is sticking to your hands, coat your palms with a small amount of flour.
Combine the sugar, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl. Drop the dough balls into the melted butter, then the bowl of cinnamon sugar and roll them around to coat them evenly.
Place the balls in the lined Crock-Pot, cover and turn it to high.
Leave the crock pot covered until the dough is cooked through and springs back when touched, anywhere from 1 to 2 hour, depending on your Crock-Pot. Use the parchment paper to remove the Monkey bread from the pot.
Flip the monkey bread onto a serving plate and remove the parchment paper (which is now the top).
Drizzle the Monkey Bread with the caramel sauce and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Eat and enjoy!
Red Star Yeast provided yeast samples for recipe testing, and sponsors BreadIn5’s website and other promotional activities.
We wanted to sneak in some summer berries before apples and pumpkin take center stage (and also take over the internet). This delicious focaccia bread is based on a recipe from Edd Kimber’s beautiful new cookbook, One Tin Bakes; his version uses fragolina grapes and rosemary. But I had blackberries in my fridge that needed to be used, some leftover Master dough, and my basil plant is currently larger than life, so Blackberry Basil Focaccia was born.
This focaccia is sweet: it’s dolloped with mascarpone and sprinkled with sugar, and the results are amazing. You will want to eat this the day it’s made, and I highly recommend digging in while it still slightly warm.
Pour two tablespoons of olive oil into a quarter sheet pan (a 9 x 13 pan will work, too) and use a pastry brush or your fingers to to rub it all over the base and up the sides of the pan. Place the dough into the pan, coating the bottom with oil, then turn the dough over so that both sides are coated in oil. Using your fingertips, gently spread the dough into the pan in an even layer. If the dough resists, let it rest a few minutes and try again, until the dough is nestled into the pan and into the corners. Lightly cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 425F. Gently dimple the dough with your fingertips.
Scatter the blackberries evenly over the dough, then sprinkle the turbinado sugar over the top (it will look like too much sugar).
Dollop the mascarpone mixture over the dough, and then drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Bake the bread for 18 to 25 minutes, or until light golden.
Scatter the basil leaves over the top of the hot bread. Move the pan to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes, then remove the focaccia from the pan and let cool on a wire rack (this helps it stay crisp).
Cut the bread into squares and serve. Best eaten the same day it’s made.
These sugar cookies are courtesy of our friend and colleague, Sarah Kieffer, who’s been part of our BreadIn5 family since 2012. You can grab the recipe for these on The Vanilla Bean Blog by clicking here, or you can buy the whole book that it comes from, click here! The year our pizza book came out, Sarah photographed an event where Zoe was doing a demo. We saw the shots on her website, and they were terrific. I’d been looking to scale back my own blogging, so I had coffee with Sarah. We hit it off right away, and I decided to turn over my part of the bread-blogging to Sarah, so this post is part of my way of saying THANK YOU for that. Eventually Sarah started doing Zoe’s too.
Here’s what impressed me: I’ve been tinkering with photography since I was 12, in my own darkrooms and then using color labs, but I struggled to create great shots for our website, because this isn’t the easiest craft to master. Well, Sarah mastered it. Juggling hobbies and avocations with the demands of caring for young children (sound familiar?), she bought a good camera and taught herself digital photography and food blogging, with phenomenal results. In addition to blogging on BreadIn5, Sarah shot and styled some of the photos in our later books. Through all this, she was perfecting a very fun and delicious cookie-baking technique. Her pan-banging chocolate chip cookies became an internet sensation, and were covered in the New York Times. She has two books of her own now; this week releasing 100 Cookies: The Baking Book for Every Kitchen. It’savailable on Amazonand everywhere else.
More beautiful cookies from Sarah’s book (and of course, all photos are by Sarah Kieffer):
Well, we’ve made our Master recipe in a crock pot, our brioche in a crock pot, dinner rolls, and even our gluten-free dough in the slow cooker. It seemed a good time to add to the list, and so we took on crock pot cinnamon rolls. I’m happy to report that they work just as well; it’s as easy as rolling out dough, brushing some butter and sprinkling sugar, shaping rolls, and then letting them bake for an hour. My family couldn’t tell they weren’t baked in the oven, and my kids had the best after school snack of the year.
We come to you again this week with one more 4th of July dessert, after realizing we didn’t have a version of these brioche buns on our website. These sweet little treats are made with our no-knead dough, filled with pastry cream and fresh fruit, then sprinkled with pearl sugar, making these red, white, and blue desserts perfect for your holiday weekend, or any day this summer.
Divide the dough into 3 ounce pieces. Gently smooth the pieces into round balls of dough. Grease English Muffin Rings, and flatten the dough into 1/4 inch disks and place them in the molds on a parchment-lined baking sheet (if you don’t have rings you can make them free form, but they won’t keep their shape as well). Cover loosely with plastic wrap (spraying the plastic with a little cooking spray will help it not to stick to the top of the dough) and allow the dough to rest for 20 minutes. While the dough is rising, adjust an oven rack to the middle position and and preheat the oven to 350F.
Use a pastry brush to brush each round of dough with egg wash. Gently press in the center of the dough to make an indentation. Fill the center with 2 tablespoons of pastry cream.
Place the berries over the pastry cream, and sprinkle the edges with pearl sugar. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the buns are puffed and light golden brown.
Eat the buns slightly warm; best eaten the same day they are made. Happy 4th of July!