Last weekend I did a lot of cooking so this weekend was baking time. Between the buns, rolls and pizzas, I’m going to be burning through a bunch of yeast and flour. Instead of using butter, I made a batch of enriched dough using duck fat, eggs and milk. You can use the same enriched ‘brioche style’ dough for various bakes, sweet or savoury.
Half of the dough (~ 2 lbs/ 900 gm) was shaped into eight 60 gm hamburger buns while the rest was rolled out into a rectangle, filled with a home made caramel sauce and chopped walnuts (use pecans if you have them) and sliced into rolls. The only change I made to my basic duck fat dough was to double the sugar content to two tablespoons.
Each hamburger was made using 125 gm of extra lean ground beef seasoned with salt, pepper and a bit of onion powder. Nothing else … no bread, no milk, no eggs, no Worchestershire sauce. The plastic sour cream lid under the bun in the front left of the picture below was used to shape the raw burger patty. The sliders I made are a bit smaller than the commercial hamburger buns. Next time, I may use a bit more dough for my sliders … maybe up to 75-80 gm. I haven’t decided yet.
Sticky Salted Caramel Walnut Rolls
Dough rolled out to a 16″ by 10″ rectangle, spread with 1/4 cup of salted caramel sauce and about a cup of chopped walnuts, rolled up and cut into 2 inch wide rolls. (I’d probably cut back the nuts to 1/2 cup next time.) Baked at 350 deg F for 30-35 min. Once baked, more caramel sauce was poured over each roll.
While my camera battery was recharging, I couldn’t resist snacking on one of the rolls.
Fat is fat …. usually. It helps if what you’re substituting is tasty. Bacon fat in place of butter is pretty good. The ‘easy’ part of the recipe title refers to the alternate method of making caramel which doesn’t require melting/caramelizing sugar by itself first. It also refers to the use of brown instead of white sugar which makes it similar to a butterscotch sauce.
Easy Bacon Fat Caramel Sauce – makes ~1 cup
1 packed cup brown sugar
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp bacon fat, or unsalted butter **
Pinch of sea salt
1 tbsp vanilla extract
** This amount of bacon fat has the same calories as twice the amount of butter.
Mix the brown sugar, whipping cream, bacon fat and salt in a medium saucepan. Put the lid on and cook over medium heat until the sugar melts and the mixture comes to a rolling boil, checking periodically. The lid helps contain the steam, lets it condense and roll down the edges of the saucepan, washing sugar crystals down into the sauce reducing/preventing crystal formation.
Remove the lid, turn the heat down to medium-low and cook, stirring gently, for an additional 5 to 7 minutes, until the mixture gets thicker.
Add the vanilla extract and cook another minute so that the mixture thicken further.
Take the saucepan off the heat, cool slightly and pour the sauce into a jar.
Refrigerate until needed.
… well, ME.
A change up from the endless bread posts.
I tried out a recipe for red velvet cake for the first time by making a half batch and baking cupcakes. Next time … do NOT double the cocoa cause the liquid red food colouring ended up sort of garnet instead of the ‘red’ that the person who posted/rec’d the recipe had. Since the cupcakes went into the freezer, I didn’t make a frosting but the cream cheese/butter combo is probably warranted.
And I made a batch of date oatmeal turnovers using a tried and true recipe. I made a few changes to switch things up like NOT pulsing the oatmeal flakes a bit in the food processor, which was a mistake. There’s a bit too much texture/roughage for my taste. And, I decided to try the egg glaze to see if I liked the shiny look … meh!! (I don’t think the look is worth using up a perfectly good egg especially as I ended up throwing away the rest.) For serving, I’d make up an icing sugar/butter glaze and drizzle it over the turnovers.
A few other things I’ve made include a batch of Nutella panna cotta …
ETA (04/12/2017): I decided to add the recipe in case anyone is interested.
Nutella Panna Cotta – makes ~1 3/4 cups, serves 4-6
1 cup/250ml whipping cream (**1/2 cup 2% milk and 1/2 cup whipping cream)
25g/2 tbsp sugar (**reduce to 1 tbsp next time)
1 tsp gelatine (**used 1 1/2 tsp)
1 1/2 tbsp cold water
1/2 cup Nutella
**pinch of salt (optional)
** Adjustments made
In a small bowl, add the gelatine and sprinkle the water over the top. Allow to bloom.
Scald the cream in a saucepan on the stove, or in a microwave safe bowl, and stir (or whisk) in the sugar and salt. Add a bit of the warmed cream to the gelatine mixture and stir until the gelatine is dissolved. Stir the Nutella into the warm cream until it’s thoroughly dissolved. Add the gelatine mixture and stir. Pour the mixture through a sieve into a measuring cup. Portion the panna cotta mixture evenly into 4-6 containers.
Let set in the fridge for at least 2 hrs. Four is preferable if you can wait that long. There’s no need to turn out the panna cotta. Eating it out of a pretty glass or other serving dish is fine.
.. and a quick sundae with the last of the French vanilla ice cream in my freezer and some sea salt caramel sauce.
Christmas for one doesn’t have to be dull and boring. I always set the table for two. This year, I used my mom’s Christmas china … I bought it for her at Canadian Tire many, many years ago. The turkey platter (only $10) picked up at the same place is perfect for this year’s duck. I found the old linen tablecloth tucked away under a stack of ‘good’ dish towels in the bathroom closet.
Duck and orange is a classic pairing but, instead of an orange sauce, I added oranges to my kale salad and dressing. Or rather, Kraft did.
Drippings from roasting the duck made a tasty base for gravy.
Bread pudding made with leftover Nutella, chocolate and pecan babka, Bree Drummond’s easy caramel sauce and a scoop of French vanilla ice cream
I spent a bit over $13 CDN for the duck (2.3 kg) but there’s enough meat for at least 4-5 servings. And the carcass (not in the picture) will end up as stock.