Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Anadama Rolls - #BreadBakers

A few days ago, my mother was going over her shopping list out loud. "Glue, pantyhose, bread..."I quickly jumped in. "I'm making bread today  - no need to buy."
"Kelly, your breads are just too rich... you're trying to fatten us."
I started to object but then I remembered that she was with me when I made the Sunflower Bread. In fact, she mixed the half stick of butter with the garlic cloves for the filling. Then later she watched me make garlic knots - lots of brushing with butter. And no one could convince her that the potato rolls (the non-whole wheat version) were not laden with butter. I kept quiet and started thinking about how I could make my next batch of bread less "rich".

Deepti had challenged us to bake rolls for this month's Bread Bakers. I wanted to include molasses, my latest obsession, but I knew the rolls could not be on the sweet side. Molasses plus oatmeal was my first inclination but that evolved into molasses with cornmeal and some whole wheat flour thrown in for good measure. It turns out that that combination already has a name - Anadama. Anadama bread is typically found in loaf form with varying stories about how it got it's name. Was a husband cursing at his wife named Anna? Did he throw a bag of cornmeal at her? Was he forced to make his own lunch and simply threw all the things in the kitchen into the bowl? We will never be sure.

This bread had always had two strikes against it for me. I refused to buy molasses and I don't really like cornmeal (understatement). I have tried to like it but I often can't get past the smell to swallow a bite. On the rare occasion that I accidentally grab corn tortillas, well..., let's keep this post pleasant. I just can't eat it. Last year I started adding tiny amounts to fried dumplings to see how much I could tolerate. It wasn't too bad - there just had to be so much more flour than cornmeal that my dumplings would be barely tinted. For my mother however, I happily threw some cornmeal into the rolls.

I am happy to report that I ate several of these rolls without mishap. You can't taste the cornmeal at all - everything seems to blend well together. I must warn you though, do not use a very bitter molasses. Maybe you call that blackstrap molasses or maybe you're in a country that just labels it "molasses" (like me), but don't do it. I did so that you don't have to. If you have to use a dark, bitter molasses, use half the suggested amount. By the way, these rolls, while soft, are not the typical fluffy dinner rolls. They are hearty and can hold  up to a wet filling,

Anadama Rolls (adapted from King Arthur)

113g  cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
43 grams butter
59 ml molasses
227g boiling water
1 egg
280g all purpose flour
113g whole wheat flour
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast

Mix together the cornmeal and salt and then add the butter and molasses to the bowl. Pour hot water over the mixture. Stir until the butter is melted. Cover and let sit until cool.

When the mixture is cool, mix in the egg then knead in the flours and the yeast. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.

Knead the dough until it's smooth. It will still be fairly sticky but do your best to get a smooth dough. Sprinkle in a little additional all purpose flour if absolutely necessary. At this point you can let it rise in the refrigerator (dough will be easier to handle) or at room temperature.

When the dough has risen, divide into 16 equal pieces and shape each piece into a ball.

Place the dough balls into greased cake pans (I used two 9" pans). Cover and let rise until doubled.

While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 350 F. When the dough is ready, bake the rolls for 25 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of at least 190 F.

BreadBakers #BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.
post signature