Thursday, June 28, 2012

The "Go To" Dough

Every baker has a recipe that is their "Go To." Heck I have several depending on the occasion. For cookies, for pie, for chicken, etc. Now I can safely say I have a "Go To" recipe for dough. Over the past week I have been on a baking kick and all of it was dough related. Now, this isn't really that uncommon for me. Back when I live in Ga., friends were always over at the house eating up cinnamon rolls, bread, coffee cakes, cakes, etc.

Thing is I had a different recipe for everything. So if I wanted to make say Pizza and Pretzels one evening and have cinnamon rolls ready for the next morning and bread loaves for lunch the next day I had to make 4 different batches of dough. For some not a big deal thanks to the Bread Machine. For me, big deal since I believe bread machines are the Devil! LOL

But 4 batches of dough in 1 evening can press even the best home baker. Now, not for more than anything because of time restraints. Dough takes time, even if you can multitask. It's gotta rise, once, maybe twice and that usually takes an hour or even 2 depending on where you are.

Yeah, well it did. Thanks to a find on the internet and some tweaks of my own I now have a recipe I can use for bread, hot dog buns, hamburger buns, pull apart brown & serve rolls, pizza, big fat yeast rolls & cinnamon rolls. (Lord only knows what else. This is just what I have managed this week.)

Now, this recipe is a rip off of a recipe for yeast rolls but I have found it very very useful. So here we go!!!!!

  • 5 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2.5 Tablespoon Rapid Rise Yeast (That's right, tablespoon! Skip packets, buy the jar.)
  • 2 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
  • 2.5 Cups Water or Milk - Heated to 120-130F 
  1. In your mixing bowl combine 2 cups of flour, yeast, sugar and salt.
  2. Mix until combined.
  3. With a paddle attachment and your mixer on low, slowly stream in the water (or milk).
  4. Mix well.
  5. Add oil.
  6. Slowly add more flour, half a cup at a time, until dough pulls away from the bowl.
  7. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead the dough vigorously 7-8 minutes.
  8. Add more flour if too sticky but do not add too much where it is dry. A little stick is okay! Form into a ball.
  9. Grease a large bowl that you can fit into another bowl with shortening.
  10. Drop the dough into the bowl and then turn over to fully coat in shortening so it does not dry out during the rise.
  11. Cover with a dry cloth.
  12. Take another large bowl, fill 1/3 the way up with hot water and place your dough bowl on top of it. (This makeshift water batch will help the dough rise faster.)
  13. Let rise until the double in size. 10-20 minutes. (Seriously, it will rise fast with the heat from the water and all that yeast.)
  14. Now, just use it as per any other recipes instructions for what ever you need.

  • For yeast rolls: pat out into a rectangle, about 3/4 inch thick. Cut into rectangles, place in greased pan, cover, let rise a second time, bake at 400 for 8-10 minutes.
  • For Loaf Bread: Punch dough down, divide in half. Form into loaves, place into well greased breadpan, brush with butter. Cover and rise until double in size, bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes until golden brown. If unsure if done, carefully roll bread out of pan and thump the bottom with your finger. If it sounds hollow, it's done.
  • For Pizza: Rip off baseball sized clumps, form into a pall, roll out to half the thickness you want, place into greased round cake pans, cover and let rise 5 minutes. Parbake for 10 minutes 400. Add toppings, place back in oven and cook until cheese has melted and crust is golden. (Or freeze parbaked crusts for later!)
  • For Cheesybread/Bread Sticks: Place dough into a well buttered 9x13 pan and press out to fill whole pan. Spread softened butter over the top and either A) Cover with 2 cups of 3 blend Italian cheese or B) Sprinkle with Parmasean Cheese and Italian Seasonings. Cover, let rise 5-10 minutes, bake at 400 until cheese is bubbling or golden brown.
  • For Hotdog/Burger Buns: Roll out dough 1/4 inch thick and cut. Circles for burgers, rectangles for hotdogs. Fold dough over for hotdogs. Stack 2 circles on top of  each other for burgers. Bake at 400 for 10-12 minutes or until golden. 
  • Pull Apart Brown & Serve: Butter down a large glass pan. Flatten out dough to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into small squares. Put in pan, cover and rise a second time. Now, either par bake for 7 minutes at 400 to freeze for use later or brush with melted butter and bake for 10-12 minutes and serve.
  • For Cinnamon Rolls - Roll out dough to 15 by 24 inch large rectangle. Coat with favorite cinnamon roll filling, roll up, cut into rolls 1.5 inches thick, place in greased pan, cover with cloth and rise a second time, then bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Top with favorite icing. (If you want these to be overnight rolls, once in pan, cover with plastic wrap, place in fridge overnight and then just uncover and bake straight out of the fridge at 350 for 25 minutes.) **I like to add 1 tablespoon of cinnamon to the flour as I am making the dough for these.**
  • For Pretzels: Cut into strips, roll out into a thin rope, form into a pretzel, dip in a mixture of 8 parts water 1 part baking soda. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet, sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake at 425 for 7 minutes or until golden.
  • For Pretzel Dogs: Cut into strips, wrap around a hot dog, dip in same mixture as pretzels, sprinkle with salt, bake for 10 minutes or until golden.
  • For Bread Bowls: Cut dough into 6 pieces, form into balls, place on 2 large lines cookie sheets, cover and let rise for 10 minutes, brush with egg whites, bake at 400 for 20 minutes or until dark brown. 
  • For English Muffins: After first rise, roll out until it is a little under a 1/2 inch thick. Cut out with a glass, empty can or cookie cutter, dust with corn meal on top and bottom. Cover and let rise a second time. Heat up your griddle, that's right, your griddle with some grease. Pan fry them on each side for 7-12 minutes on medium heat. (Push down is getting slightly too puffy with your spatula.) Let cool fully, cut in half, toast.
And there you have it!!!! My Go To recipe!

Examples of things from this week. Sorry the pictures suck, took them with my phone camera.


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