Today I was making a simple breakfast and it was just not going well. It got me to thinking that even the most experienced chef must have at least one simple recipe that they mess up now and again. You know like burning your pot when you put water in it to boil haha.
I think everyone has that one simple recipe that all their friends and family have mastered and they simply can’t get it right. You make it perfect today and tomorrow you spoil it. That “simple” recipe for me is fried dumplings aka Johnny Cakes.
Listen, if you know me you would know how much I love fried dumplings. I mean I live for them. Seriously I might have an organ in my body entirely made out of fried dumplings. I grew up eating them almost every day. Whenever I visit my mom’s house she makes them for me for breakfast with liver or ackee, two of my favorite breakfast items. My boyfriend makes them for me most mornings before I go to work. My sister or brother would also make them for me from time to time.
Do you see the problem here? Lol they were always made FOR me and not BY me. I know the concept, I have seen it being made first hand thousands of times. I am familiar with all the steps, the kneading time, the texture before and after frying, the frying time, the smell, the shade, the sound haha everything. But no matter what I can never predict how mine will turn out.
I have messed up so many times and so I have come to accept that I will never be a perfect dumpling chef and that’s fine! I will just visit mommy more often :-). What’s your problem recipe?
There is nothing that brings me more joy than making something from scratch. Whether it be a meal or some cool DIY item. It gives me so much gratification to see my hard work turn out beautifully.
I made bread rolls! They were so soft I could have rested on them like a pillow. I was very pleased with myself when I made my dough. It was perfectly round. I mean the dough was just a masterpiece to look at. I tried making dough a few times before and the first time….well, lets just say it could be a good addition to brick wall. Other times it turned out pretty good but this time around it turned out perfectly. I finally think I have the hang of it.
- Don’t over flour your dough when you turn it out on the counter for a quick knead.
- Give your dough adequate time to rest. A good bread takes time.
- Don’t knead your dough after it has risen this will make it tough…trust me I would know…
- Never add salt directly on yeast, it will deactivate.
Now lets get started, as usual measure out all your ingredients before hand to make the process smooth.
- 4 cups of All Purpose Flour
2.5 tsp instant yeast or 1/4 Package of Rapid Rise Yeast
1/3 cup of Granulated Sugar
1 tsp of Salt
1 cup of Milk
1/3 cup of Unsalted Butter, Softened
3 Egg Yolks
3 Tbsp of Unsalted Butter, melted
- In a small saucepan, add the milk and butter and warm it just enough until the butter melts. The mixture should be lukewarm and you should be able to put your finger in the mix. If it is too hot let it cool for a while.
- Pour the mixture in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook and sprinkle the yeast at the top. Let it sit for 5 minutes. If you use the instant yeast you can skip this step (that yeast is added to the flour)
- Mix in your three egg yolks and beat on low for about a minute.
- Add half of your dry ingredients to the wet mixture with your mixer on low and mix until incorporated. Add the rest of your dry ingredients.
- Increase the speed to medium high and knead the dough for about 5 to 7 minutes or until it is nice and smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. A clean bowl is always a good sign of great dough.
- Pour out your dough on your work surface lightly dusted with flour. Form a ball with your dough and lightly grease it with olive or coconut oil. Grease your bowl with oil and return the dough to the bowl.
- Cover your bowl with cling wrap and a tea towel and set aside in a warm dry place (the oven is ideal do NOT turn on the oven). Let it rest for two hours or until it has doubled in size)
- Once risen, dump the dough onto your work surface, (flour it a little if necessary) and deflate it by simply pushing it down with your fingers (do not knead).
- Cut the dough into 12 equal pieces and form these pieces into tiny balls.
- Cover the dough balls with your tea towel on a lightly greased pan as you go along. Once all twelve balls are made let it sit for about an hour under the tea towel.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Once the rolls have risen, bake them for about 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Brush them with melted butter immediately when they come out of the oven and enjoy!