THIS has become our VERY favorite “roll” recipe. I make the dough up into these round braids just because I like the lovely presentation. It’s something a little different, maybe fancier, than a typical knot or crescent roll, and in less time. Just over a year ago, I shared the original recipe here. But I’ve made a few changes that have improved the texture so that now each bite is
a pillow soft morsel of heaven.
Too much? Hey, survey says! The less romantic detail is that now the recipe uses a bit more of my food storage and I swear they taste better. And speaking of taste, most people are not aware that there is corn meal in the mix. They just love the richness of the flavor, and don’t know why. Are you drooling yet?
Last thing, before I get into the recipe, and this may be the most important detail of all, is that this recipe is idiot proof. You know me and my many sad baking adventures. A big big part of why I love this recipe is that it works EVERY TIME. Even I can’t seem to ruin it! Children can make them.
These specific gorgeous wreaths were made by Lizzie (15) and her chum, Sarah, to be served a few days later at a special YW dinner. In spite of Lizzie being on a ridiculous whining and complaining jag that day, the two teenagers were able to knock out the whole production and get the formed dough into the freezer in no time. Our plan was that we/they in the teaching-moment-jungle (as it turned out) would get the wreaths prepared ahead of time. Regardless of my schedule, I could manage pulling the dough out of the freezer, late morning, on the day of the event, so that the dough would have plenty of time to thaw and rise. In spite of a crazy busy day, we were able to share piping-hot-beautiful-yummy-wonderfulness with no mess, no dishes, and no hassle. Hallelujah!
1/2 cup butter
*extra butter for brushing on the dough, before and after baking, and you would be dumb not to:)
2 eggs, whisked
6 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup powdered milk
1 cup instant potato flakes
5 cups flour
1 cup cornmeal
2 tablespoons instant yeast
1. Heat 2 1/4 cups of water in a pot on the stove. (Microwave would probably work.) Add the sugar, salt, powdered milk, and butter. When the mixture is almost ready to boil stir in the instant potato flakes. As soon as the potatoes have rehydrate, pour them into your mixer and allow to cool completely. This is when you can work on preparing the other ingredients…and changing the laundry…and emptying the dishwasher…while the teenagers waste time on Face Book. You know.
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining dry ingredients: flour, corn meal, and instant yeast.
4. When the potato mixture has cooled, stir in the 2 whisked eggs. Then add the flour/cornmeal/yeast combination and knead for 15 minutes. Form as you prefer and brush with melted butter.
5. Allow to rise for about 90 minutes, or cover with plastic and freeze for later use.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes, depending on how the dough has been formed. Brush with additional melted butter (or frost*) before serving.
*Just thought I would mention that this dough makes a bangin’ cinnamon roll.
And here we have the frozen wreaths,
and after they’ve been thawing and rising in a nice warm spot for about 4-6 hours,
and straight from the oven, ready to be brushed with butter, and then off to our event.
When Lizzie came home that night she seemed genuinely surprised that the girls and adult leaders had enjoyed the wreaths as much as they did. She said they went a little nuts. Respectfully. Isn’t that what we’re after, after all? Bread that just makes people SUPER HAPPY!