Sunday, April 29, 2012

Kaiser Rolls

Mister and I have a friend who's coming to stay for nearly two weeks. In an endeavor to have food at home, we actually bought cold-cuts. This means that we needed either bread or rolls. Being much more a fan of rolls for sandwiches, I figured I'd make some rolls with my sourdough starter.

I had had a sponge in the fridge getting sadder and sadder for almost a week, so I tried to wake it up first. I added another cup of flour, a half cup of water, and put it in a warm oven. As it rose quite beautifully, I searched for roll recipes. I based my rolls upon this recipe. I poured one cup of bread flour on the counter, added 4 tsp of salt, about 3 or 4 Tbs of sugar, 3 Tbs of powdered milk, and another cup of bread flour on top of that. I whisked it all together and into a flat circle. I poured my healthy sponge onto this dry mix and proceeded to combine the two. While kneading this all, I also added about 4 Tbs of oil, in 4 increments and a single egg. After working it all together, I let it rest for about 5 minutes while I washed out and oiled the bowl. Re-kneaded the bread for a few minutes, then put it in the oiled bowl to rise in a warm oven.

After it had doubled in size, I dumped it on the counter (the oil helped prevent sticking), and divided it into 16. I shaped each piece into a little ball, and placed it on an oiled pan while working with the others. After balling each of the 16 balls, I then covered the balls with a damp towel while shaping the rolls.

To shape the rolls, I based it off of these directions. I sprinkled rye flour over the counter, and flattened a ball on the flour. Picking up little bits of the edge, I brought the edge into the center much like folding flower petals inward and with the final one, gave the center a good smoosh. I inverted the rolls onto a dish of poppy seeds, and put it poppy-seed-down on a pan lined with parchment paper. After all of the rolls had been shaped, I covered them with plastic and let them rise overnight in the now-cool oven.

This morning, I preheated the oven to 425F and, after turning each roll poppy-side-up, baked the rolls for ~25 mins, rotating the trays halfway through the bake.< br />
The only thing that I would do differently for the next batch is to twist the "petals" of the kaiser knot as I brought them to the center, as most of my rolls recombined and didn't have distinct markings on the top. But they're delicious! Mister and I have already made a breakfast sandwich with them with great success.

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