Thursday, 17 November 2011

Stracciatella Sweet Rolls

These are a 10, ten, Ten, TEN. They are good. Okay, maybe I'm a little too confident. My man rated them a 9 out of 10. And one of my best girlfriends rated them a 8.5 out of 10. That's a pretty good rating especially for two people who went to the higher level high schools here in the Netherlands. I'm told it's pretty much impossible to earn a 10. Unlike the United States where A's are given left and right. Just sayin' in my opinion anything above 8 is pretty much the same thing as a 10.

Anyway, I was walking through the Aldi checking out new products when I come across Stracciatella boterham pasta - that's Dutch for sandwich spread. That's one of the sweet things about living in Europe... we don't just have Nutella - we have just about anything you can think of to spread on bread. So, I see it and grab a jar of it and try it out at home immediately... and to be honest, on bread it's a bit boring... but I know I can do something more with it. I try it sandwiched between to ginger cookies and I like it. 

Yeah so I figured it would be better as dessert, obviously.

I knew I would need to create a Stracciatella sweet roll that featured this spread. So, I did. But I didn't just smear it inside regular dough - I made the dough -  yes, but I sprinkled it and kneaded it throughout with chocolate pieces. Then I topped the baked rolls with more yummy delish stracciatella glaze - three times we have stracciatella and it works. It's just plain awesome. They are so good... and for once, I'll be making these for Thanksgiving dessert instead of pumpkin sweet rolls - which, let's admit - are a little overdone. Pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cinnamon rolls - I've had enough pumpkin... I'm having stracciatella!

I like to think of myself as trend setter - I'm just ahead of my time.

I go back to the Aldi, only about a week later, and this stuff is completely cleaned out... so I searched and I hoped and down under all the caramel sandwich spread, I find one lone jar of stracciatella spread - yes... it's mine, it's all mine!

  • In a large glass bowl, combine 2 tablespoons warm milk and 1 package vanilla sugar plus 1 teaspoon active dry or instant yeast. Let rest. 
  • Add in 1/2 cup slightly warm milk, 1/4 cup caster sugar, and 1/4 cup light colored oil (vegetable oil) plus 1/2 teaspoon salt. Mix in 2 to 2 1/4 cups white all purpose flour. Knead until dough is not too sticky and then put into oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. 
  • Let rise in warm place until doubled. After about one hour, punch down dough. Knead in about 2 tablespoons dark chocolate flavored flakes or finely chopped dark chocolate pieces. Let rest 10-20 minutes. 

  • Roll out into rectangle. Spread with 1/4 to 1/3 cup Stracciatella sandwich spread and sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon gingerbread or pumpkin pie spice over that. Roll up and cut into 8 equal slices. Place into a buttered glass casserole or pie plate. Let rise again in warm place till doubled - about 30 minutes. 

  • Bake in preheated oven 175-C for 10 minutes, then adjust the heat to 150-C and continue to bake 5-10 minutes till dough springs back lightly when touched. Remove from oven. Let cool slightly. 
  • Prepare glaze: mix together 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons milk and 1/4 teaspoon clear vanilla extract. Blend in 1/2 to 1 teaspoon dark chocolate flakes. Then stir in about 2 tablespoons stracciatella sandwich spread. Drizzle this mixture evenly over rolls. 

Makes 8 sweet rolls that rock - serve warm. Even yummy the next day - just warm them in the microwave for about 30 seconds on high power.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Mango Lassi-inspired Sweet Roll

I have a favorite drink I like to serve whenever I make Indian Butter Chicken which is one of our family favorites and that is Mango Lassi. I love it. In fact, I remember that in college I use to order a tall Mango Lassi and Naan bread and nothing else. That is what I would get when everyone else was ordering pizza.

I have a favorite recipe for Mango Lassi that I found at - from celebrity chef Emeril and I love the combinations of orange juice and mango.... so smoothie like. Try out the recipe linked I think you'll love it - add a pinch of cardamom - that's good, too. 

Anyway, my little girl asked me the other day "when are you going to make sweet rolls again?" so I decided to make a Mango Lassi sweet roll and it turned out alright. In fact, it was just plain good.  These are yummy - dare I say, it's in my top 5 favorite sweet rolls from this blog.

So, here goes:

  • In another small bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons warm orange juice, 1 heaping teaspoon active dry yeast or instant yeast and about 1 teaspoon white sugar. Let rest about 5 minutes.
  • In a large glass bowl, mix 1/2 cup plain non-fat yogurt with scant 1/4 cup white sugar and 1 heaping tablespoon fresh grated orange zest (from one small orange). Add in yeast mixture, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 4 tablespoons vegetable oil and 1 3/4 to 2 cups all purpose flour. Mix until the dough doesn't stick to the spoon anymore. Knead a few minutes then let rise in a oiled bowl in warm place for at least 1 hour. 
  • Punch down dough and let rest 10 minutes. Then prepare filling: in small bowl mix together 1tablespoon yogurt + 1 tablespoon honey + 1 tablespoon rose flavored syrup and 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface into about 12 inch by 12 inch square. Spread filling over dough. Roll up, cut into 8 equal slices and place into buttered/oiled pie plate or glass casserole. Let rise again about 30 minutes. Make indentation into each roll and spoon in tablespoonfuls of mango jelly or mango syrup into each indentation.
  • Bake in preheated oven 175-C degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and springs back when poked. Remove from oven and cool. Then mix in a small bowl 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar, 2 tablespoon yogurt, 1/8 teaspoon each orange extract and vanilla extract. Drizzle over rolls. Makes 8 sweet rolls that rock. Serve immediately. Enjoy!
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The funny thing is that the finished product - the mango syrup centered rolls look a lot like runny egg yolks. No matter the looks, they taste great!

No egg yolks here, just mango syrup!

Some of my favorite products - both good - I've used the mango dessert sauce mainly with ice cream and yogurt parfaits - it went great with the sweet rolls. I've got lots of future plans for using up the rose syrup... the combination of rose syrup, honey and cardamom is pure awesomeness - definitely going to do more with that in future sweet rolls that rock :)
Linked here: