Sunday, November 9, 2008

Quick and Easy Dinner Rolls

I have a confession to make... I make all our bread. Loaves for sandwiches and toast, pizza dough, foccacia, bruschetta, dinner rolls, cheesebread, zucchini bread, corn bread, etc. The confession is: I now use a bread machine for the dough!

I know, I know... Sacrilege! Blasphemer!

Well, does it help that the batter breads are still made in a bowl? So's the corn bread. So's the biscuit dough. Even the doughs made in the bread machine are also still rolled out and shaped by hand! Heck, even my homemade pasta (no pasta maker, just a rolling pin and really strong forearms --no carpal tunnel yet!) is completely from scratch!

OT how many guys do you know that actually make their own ravioli?

And I do toss and twirl the pizza bases to shape them! Oops, SPLAT, there's another mess on the floor to clean up...

So, can you, like, maybe, sorta forgive me for using the bread machine for the dough? Pretty please?

So, here's my standard recipe white bread and rolls. It all gets chucked into the bread maker on it's "dough" setting. If you're making it by hand I'm sure you'll figure out how to make it since you've obviously made dough before. If you've never made dough by hand and don't have bread (dough) maker, then I'll put some instructions up for ya, no worries.

BTW, I use the bread machine for dough cus I'm making at least a loaf everyday. And today I'll be making pizza dough in it along with a loaf of rye. It really just saves boatloads of time.

Dingo Dave's Quick and Easy Dinner Rolls:

What you need:

375 mls water (that's about 1 1/2 cups)
2 tbsp raw sugar (that's about 2 tbsp)
1 tsp of sea salt (or somewhere close to that)
3 tbsp olive oil (yes, it must be olive oil)
4 1/3 cups high quality flour (at least 10.9% protein)
2 tsp dried yeast

What you do:

If you have a bread machine, then chuck it all in your bread pan (don't forget the paddle!!!) and set it to your "dough" setting. Should take about 90 mins (minutes).

If you wanna make the dough by hand...

Warm the water slightly and add the sugar and the yeast. Let the yeast "proof" for ten mins (it'll "foof" on the top of the water). Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Add the proofed yeast mix and the olive oil. Mix well. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead 8 or ten times. Remember: when kneading bread dough, only use the "heels" of your hand, DON'T dig your fingers into the dough.

Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover the top of the bowl with a damp, warm towel, and let rise in a warm place for an hour (turn your oven on for a minute, then turn it off: instant warm place!).

After an hour, the dough should have doubled in size. Punch the dough down and then turn it onto a floured board.

SEE? Wasn't the bread machine way so much easier????

BTW, remember I'm not too worried about how my food pics looks, they are more to give you the general idea. Besides, I'm usually way too busy in the kitchen to get good food pics. Unlike my parrot pics, of course.

Anyways, no matter how you make the dough, here's what it'll look like after you take it out of the bread maker or take it out of the bowl:
ball of dough
Please note this morning's loaf on the bread rack and tonight's chicken soup stock in the large pot.

Grab a small hunk of the dough, about this size:
tiny hunk of dough
Please note, this size is for dinner rolls with the soup. When I make burger rolls for the kangaroo burgers I'll make em a bit larger.

Give it a quick roll between your palms:
rolling around

And it'll look like this:
finished dough roll

I cook mine on one of my pizza stones. Just sprinkle a bit of polenta (or corn meal if you are in North America) on the stone so the rolls don't stick. Put the first one in the centre (center):
one roll
Note, that's not crumbs on the pizza stone, it's polenta. Also, the potato is to be diced up and tossed in the soup. The end of the bread is for bread crumbs.

Load up the pizza stone with the rest of the rolls:
lotsa rolls
Note the amount of space left between the rolls

Now get a brush, some olive oil and a bowl
olive oil brush dish

Brush, brush, brush...

Pop that sucker in an oven at 180 C (around 360 F) fan forced, or 200 C (395-400 F) if not fan forced. 20 to 25 mins.

When they come out they'll look like this:
done rolls 01

And here's another view:
done rolls 02
Please notice that I diced up the spud, seared the pieces in a wok with some olive oil and flour, and added it to the chicken soup while the rolls were cooking.

After about five mins, pull the rolls apart and let them cool on a rack. If you've left them in the oven too long and the tops are too crispy, then after about 20 mins of cooling put them in a plastic bag. The rest of the steam will soften the tops and they'll still be perfect.

Remember, if you are gonna use them for roo burgers, instead of rolling them out to 11 or 12 rolls, you'll want 6 or 7 ro


Arvay said...

Oooohhhh... I love the smell of bread baking, but I hate cleaning up after bread dough, particularly yeast doughs, which cling to everything, even my sponge!

Since you make so much bread, I wish I could send you my whey... :)

Alaskan Dave Down Under said...

The dough can be pretty sticky. That's one of the reasons why I use the bread machine.

Don't use a sponge to clean the counter after you've been kneading dough! As you've noticed the dough is very hard to get off the sponge.

I'll see your whey and raise you a bowl of curds :)

Today is the first day in about 3 weeks that there has been no bread baking in the house... My nose is not happy. Neither is my stomach.

Arvay said...

What do you use, that's not a sponge?

Alaskan Dave Down Under said...

Ah! Clean up... Firstly, while kneading the dough, make sure your surface is lightly floured and that your hands are also. The flour from your hands will work itself into the dough, so I usually keep a small pile of flour handy to re-flour my palms.

Once you are done with the dough and it's in the oven, just use your hands to brush all the excess flour of onto a cutting board. Rinse the cutting board in the sink, no worries.

For cleaning up the surface after brushing the loose flour off, just use your hands and start rubbing your palms on the surface. You'll find that whatever pieces of sticky dough is left will roll up into tiny strands. The strands get tossed, BTW.

And then you can go ahead and wipe down you countertop surface without getting your sponge all full of gunky, sticky, doughy, goop.

Jim and Heather on Meerkat said...

I love my bread machine - so much easier than hand kneading (especially if you had your left wrist partially re-built surgically)...
Ok, it's official, Jim and Heather are moving in with you and WP.

Arvay said...

Ooohhh... I'd been using a wooden spatula to scrape my counter. I'd not thought of rubbing it with my hands. I do rub my hands together to get the dough off them. Thanks!

Alaskan Dave Down Under said...

SV Meerkat: Bread machines are a great time saver. I mainly use mine for making the dough, although with you being on the boat I quite agree with baking it in the machine too. Hmmmm, did you get the compass heading and bearings from Baja to Adelaide? After your surgery perhaps we should call your vessel The Bionic Boat... :)

Arvay: I came up with the trick after rubbing my hands together to get rid of the dough (like you do) and then I thought, heck, I wonder if it works on the countertop? Always experiment and try new things. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it, ahhh, hmmmm, doesn't. But you never know till you try.