Saturday, November 13, 2010

Buns, Buns & More Buns!!

I was checking out Facebook yesterday and my sweet friend Debbie from Alaska had a posting from her daughter Katie saying that they needed to make something called Balloon Buns next time Katie was home. Me being the ever interested culinary gal (particularly when the word Buns is used) that I am asked Katie what in the world were Balloon Buns. Her reply -- "an Über yummy hollow cinnamon roll filled with melty gooey marshmallow goodness!" Her reply sold me. I had to try these!! Researching on the internet, I found a few varieties, some made with canned biscuits. Others with yeast bread using a sweet dough. Many of the comments were about how incredibly sweet they were. I took note of that and decided that just a basic bread dough might still do the trick. So my son Travis & I set about the task this morning of making "Balloon Buns".

I made a 2-loaf recipe using Kamut (posted a couple days ago). We used half of the dough for 24 Balloon Buns and the other half for 4 burger buns and 6 hot dog buns. However, in my zeal for getting this recipe on the blog, I forgot about the burger and dog buns and let them burn--major bummer!! I'll still show the pics though. You'll get the idea.

We made this 2-loaf batch of dough in my Compact Bosch. I will advertise a little here and tell you that the Compact is an awesome little machine for your everyday tasks--from making a 2 loaf batch of bread to cookies or whatever else you may normally use a Kitchen Aid for. By the way, the Compact Bosch is 400 watts (next to my 300 watt Kitchen Aid) and is so light, I can pick it up with only 1 hand.

1 batch of 2-loaf dough
24 large marshmallows
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cup melted butter
2 muffin pans
1 extra pair of hands

So we got started by mixing the water, oil, honey, some of the flour & yeast. Then we put the cover on and let it proof for about 15 minutes until the mixture rose up and got bubbly.

Next we added more flour, some gluten & salt. We continued adding flour until the dough began to clean the sides of the bowl. We let it knead on setting 3 (for Bosch Compact, setting 2 for the Universal) for 6-8 minutes. We then covered the bowl and let is rise in the bowl for about 10 minutes, until it almost reaches the lid.

Then we divided the batch in two. One was destined to sit in an oven, forgotten so as to become my burnt burger & dog buns :-(. The other, however, was destined for greatness and would be the Über Yummy Balloon Buns!

Begin by dividing the dough into 4 sections, then each quarter into 6 sections--giving you 24 sections. Just work with 6 at a time, leaving all the rest of your dough under a bowl on the counter so it doesn't dry out.

Roll each section out.

Now would be a good time to have a second pair of hands. Roll a marshmallow in melted butter, then in cinnamon sugar. Next place it on your rolled out section.

And wrap it up! Be sure and crimp the ends together as well as you can so the marshmallow-ey center doesn't leak out.

Once it's all sealed up tight, then roll the whole bun in butter and cinnamon sugar once more. Place the bun in a muffin tin (sprayed with cooking spray).

When all 24 of your buns are in the pans, place them in a warm oven to rise for 20 minutes. Then bake at 350 for about 18 minutes.

When they're done, immediately remove them from the pans onto cooling racks.

Thank you Debbie & Katie for a fun morning in the kitchen and some "Über Yummy-ness"!

**Tips for this recipe--
1) Place them upside down on the cooling racks. When baking, some of them may break open. So turn them upside down even if you don't spot a hole. That way all the yummy goodness doesn't drain out onto your counter.
2) Line your oven with some foil before baking. This way, if some of the buns open up while baking, you won't have a sugary mess all over your oven and curse little 'ole me!

And now on to the Burger & Hot Dog Buns . . .

Divide the remaining dough in half. Divide the 1st half into 4 parts. To form a nice round burger bun, bring the sides up to form a small purse.

Then smash it! You should now have a nice round bun.
Do this with a little bit of flour on the counter so it doesn't stick.

Divide the 2nd half into 6 sections. Roll each one up like a snake, keeping in mind how long your hot dogs will be--the normal size or the bigger brats size.

Place on a baking sheet to rise in a warm oven for 20 minutes. Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes. These will freeze great to be pulled out next time you decide to have dogs or burgers and are so much better than store bought!

These don't really look too bad I guess Ü

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Kamut Bread

I have a new love. Only met this one about a month ago, but I've fallen hard--for Kamut!! It has an interesting history, though it probably did not come from any ancient Egyptian tomb as is rumored. If you want to read more about it and its origins, check out You often hear that hard white wheat (Prairie Gold) yields a bread that looks closer to a traditional white bread. Kamut is even lighter! But don't let this pale-face fool you. It is an incredibly nutritious grain, high in protein and makes a super yummy buttery tasting bread! I highly encourage you to try this wonderful grain. I promise you'll love it!!

Try this recipe for Kamut bread. (Though you can use the same one for any whole grain bread)

2 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tablespoons SAF yeast
6 cups freshly ground Kamut flour
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup honey
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup. vital wheat gluten
1/2 tsp vitamin C crystals

Mix water, oil, honey, yeast and enough flour in your Bosch compact mixer to form a mixture that looks like oatmeal. Let this mixture sit for about 15 minutes, until it doubles in the bowl.

Now add the salt, gluten, & vitamin C crystals. Add enough flour until dough cleans the side of the bowl. Knead for about 8 minutes. Let the dough rest in the bowl for 30 minutes. Turn dough out of bowl onto work surface and shape into 2 loaves. Place in oiled pans. Let rise for 20 minutes in a warm oven. Bake for 20-30 minutes--loaves are done at 180 degrees.

Immediate remove from pans to drying rack and let completely cool before storing in bags.

NOTE: In this particular recipe, I've included a 2nd rise. I'm finding that this more traditional 2nd rise is giving my bread a richer flavor and texture than just one.