How does the song go? “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!” Well, here in Sayulita it’s beginning to sound a lot like Christmas, too! The firecrackers have started booming. I wonder why they go off at 6:00 a.m.? The only answer I have is “well, after all, it is Mexico!” I thought it would be appropriate to share a holiday recipe for my next few columns. Do you remember those old fashioned dinner rolls that we would have with our special Christmas dinner when we were younger? I made some this morning and they came out great; they are so easy and fun to make. If you spread them thick with butter, you will see why I am including this recipe with you. They are oh so yummy and also a recipe that is traditional and stands the test of time.
1 & ½ cups warm water
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar or honey
1 Tablespoon instant yeast (*levedura in Español)
1 & ¼ teaspoon salt
1 & ½ teaspoons of garlic powder
3 to 3 & ½ cups, or about 15 to 17.5 ounces white organic flour. (*You can always find organic flour at Terrenal, Sayulita’s all-organic food shop. )
½ cup (2 ounces) finely grated parmesan or asiago cheese (*freshly grated is best)
3 tablespoons melted butter
Optional dried herbs, such as rosemary, thyme or oregano. (*Oksana of Sana Spices sells all these herbs at our Mercado del Pueblo on Fridays.)
1. In the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the water, sugar or honey, yeast, salt, garlic powder, and 1 cup of the flour. (*You can also make these bread-sticks by hand in a large bowl with a spoon).
2. Mix to combine.
3. With the mixer on low speed, add the cheese and then gradually add the flour a little at a time, until a soft ball of dough forms and clears the sides of the bowl.
4. Knead for 2-3 minutes, adding more flour if the dough is overly sticky. Take care not to over flour the dough. (*Depending on elevation, humidity, temperature and other factors including how you measure flour, you may need to add more or less flour. I had to add almost ½ cup more today because of the high humidity.)
5. Let the dough rest in the bowl for at least ½ hour.
6. Spread the melted butter on a large baking sheet.
7. Turn the dough out onto a lightly greased counter-top, and cut the dough into about 16-20 even pieces.
8. Take each piece of dough and roll between your hands into a thick strip. Fold one end under the other and bring it through the hole, just like tying a knot. It's okay if the dough sticks a bit; it doesn't have to be perfect.
9. Place the bread-stick knots on the prepared baking sheet an inch or so apart.
10. Let them rest for 10-15 minutes (or up to 30 minutes) in a warm spot until noticeably puffy.
11. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
12. Bake the bread-sticks for 15-16 minutes, or until lightly golden. Brush with additional melted butter if desired.
Make these for your Sayulita Christmas dinner and your guests will be so impressed! I am available to make yummy appetizers or a special dessert for your holiday season of entertaining. Simply contact me through my Sayulita Life web-page.
What’s next? Look forward to Peanut Butter Blossom Cookies!
*Written by: Karina Shecter