Saturday, December 5, 2009
BBA #16: Kaiser Rolls
For some reason, I was uninspired about the next couple of BBA Challenge breads...I think because I didn't feel like I had time to both bake Kaiser rolls AND make anything that went with Kaiser rolls, so I wasn't really sure what we'd do with them. And after Kaiser rolls...lavash crackers...which seem interesting, but have not gotten very good reviews from many of the other BBA bloggers I follow.
My lunch bunch at work have been harassing me about not bringing in bread recently, and finally one of them said, "How do you need to find inspiration to make Kasier rolls?!? What's wrong with you?!" (or something like that)
So I did it. The recipe was pretty straight-forward. A night-before pâte fermentée...luckily I'd read from multiple bloggers that the rolls take only half of the pâte fermentée recipe in the book, so I just made half and didn't have to waste any. The little ball of dough was pretty cute; it didn't seem like it could possibly amount to much. (This is the dough in my tiny 1 qt glass mixing bowl. Teeny!)
The next day I mixed everything in the stand mixer and let it rise. Rolling and knoting the dough to achieve the Kaiser rolls shape was a little intimidating, but Peter Reinhart's instructions on page 82 were really clear. I had to call the hubby over to look at them and make sure I was doing it right - it seemed way too easy.
I let them rise again and then baked them. They turned out pretty well...for Kaiser rolls...not really my type of bread. Hubby and the baby ate them plain and seemed to love them. I brought one in to share with the lunch bunch and they tried many creative toppings, proving that you don't really need an impressive vehicle in order to justify making Kaiser rolls. I had a turkey sandwich on mine, and it was pretty tasty. My harshest critic (my dad) said that they weren't quite up to NY delicattesan standards: too tall and not wide enough, so each bite had too much bread. I'm not sure how you'd achieve a flatter wider roll with the knotting technique of forming them.
Anyway, there you have it, and now onto lavash crackers. I'm excited for next week and starting on a series of sandwich breads....I am a sandwich lover, and we go through a lot of sandwich bread each week. I'm hopeful I'll find a favorite to start making regularly - how fun to eat our normal lunch on homemade bread!