maple coriander rolls
i love making things from scratch, especially you have to put as much physical energy into someone as kneading bread dough, you can really let your energy become part of the food.
for just that reasons i have been making my own bread lately. it’s relaxing, fun and really makes the taste difference. i would highly suggest playing around with your own recipes to see what you can cook up.
maple coriander rolls
1 c warm water
2/3 c maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp active yeast
2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/3 c white flour
2+ c whole wheat flour
mix together warm water (i use the warmest that will come out of the tap), maple syrup, yeast, and coriander. you want to let this mixture sit for at least 15 minutes to let the yeast hydrate, come back to life and even start to convert some of those carbohydrates you introduced (the syrup) into carbon dioxide (CO2)–you will see a few bubbles start to form on the surface.
this is how bread works, the yeast eat up sugars and gives off CO2 bubbles, which make the bread light and fluffy. that’s why it’s always a good idea to start with some sort of sugar to help reactivate the yeast. if you don’t use maple syrup just sprinkle in some sugar to wake them up.
next add the olive oil and begin to add in the flour. i find that a little bit of white flour helps the bread from getting too tough, so add this in first. the rest of the whole wheat flour will not be exact. add it in slowly until it forms into a doughy ball. at this point you should be able to pick it up with floured hands and lay it out on a floured surface without it sticking too much.
and now we begin to knead, add more flour as needed if it’s too sticky. this step is to build up the gluten–the protein found in wheat–into long strands so the bread is elastic.
nowadays, when i say “gluten” a tinge of fear runs across most people’s faces as they say, “isn’t gluten bad for you?” well, yes, if you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivities then you should avoid gluten. but if you don’t then whole wheat is great for vegans because we can synthesize most of our essential amino acids from whole grains.
after kneading for 5-10 minutes (don’t let the dough get too tough) it’s time to separate into roll-sized pieces. i made 6 rolls, which is easy to do this by cutting dough in half and then thirds so the pieces are all about the same size.
the goal is then to give them into nice little even tops so when they rise they stay round. with bread dough the best way to do this is to pull the edges of the ball with greased hands around to one side and pinch together. the top should be smooth and then you can plop them down on a lightly floured cookie sheet
let them rise for about 30 minutes or until they are about the size you’d like them and then pop them in the oven. if you’d like them to have a little pattern on top, like a simple X, just run smooth-edged knife along the top mid-rise.
bake at 400F for 15-20 minutes or until they are golden brown. let cool and enjoy as little sandwiches or at dinner!
yields 6 rolls