Rolling in the Dough

It’s been a big kitchen day here.  I started by making and canning six pints of salsa verde.  I might write about that later, but at the moment I’m more interested in the bread making projects I’ve started.  For Christmas my friend Kristin got me a book on “no-knead” bread making, but until today I’ve never tried it.  Part of this is because this bread recipe takes 18 hours to make and I only occasionally plan that far ahead.  The nice part of a bread recipe with this kind of rising time is that getting a loaf started takes about ten minutes.

My other dough related project is cinnamon rolls.  I have another friend who is spending this weekend getting her youngest son married off.  After a weekend of wedding events I thought it might be nice for her to have a nice breakfast delivered to her.  The bonus for me is that almost nothing makes the house smell better than baking cinnamon rolls.  I altered the tried and true Better Homes recipe just a touch by using buttermilk.  I had a cup of buttermilk left from earlier in the week so I figured I’d use it rather than let it go bad.  I think the dough is just a touch more dense because of it, but still yummy.  Of course you ice them with a powdered sugar, milk and vanilla icing.  Yummy any time of the day, but I hope they’ll make a lovely breakfast for my friend who deserves a leisurely morning.

Sadly I can’t reprint the recipes I used because of copyright protections, but cinnamon roll recipes are a dime a dozen. I’m sure you have several that you could scare up if need be.  The eighteen hour bread recipe is from My Bread by Jim Lahey.  I’ll let you know how that turns out.

8/8/10:  The bread update!

This.  Is.  Good.  Bread.  I was skeptical.  This is the loosest dough you’ll ever work with.  My loaf turned out kind of small because a lot of the sticky dough stuck to the bread cloth it was rising in.  Next time I’ll use wheat germ or something a little heavier than regular flour for coating the cloth.  I have no idea why the second rising couldn’t be done in a bowl, but the recipe specifies a cloth.

I baked my loaf in a small enameled cast iron pot.  You have to use an oven safe pot with a top.  Lahey calls it “an oven within an oven.”  It allows the bread to bake, but also holds moisture.  It also creates a very crunchy crust.  Very crunchy.  The inside is chewy and fantastic.  This is the bread you want when you serve soup or sauces that need to be sopped up.  Of course it was excellent with just a little butter as well!

This one’s a keeper!

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