I’ve been meaning all year to properly get back into the Daring Bakers Challenge… I can’t believe it’s taken me this long! I had a few months there where I even baked the challenge but just never get around to blogging about it. I was determined for this month to be different.
And what a month to jump back in: The August Daring Bakers’ Challenge took us for a spin! Swathi of Zesty South Indian Kitchen taught us to make rolled pastries inspired by kürtőskalács, a traditional Hungarian wedding pastry. These tasty yeasted delights gave us lots to celebrate!
The first cab off the rank were the kürtőskalács, or chimney cakes. I’d never heard of these before, which is my favourite part about Daring Bakers. The basics of making a yeast dough, on the other hand, were very familiar.
If you’re using dried yeast, like I did, it’s always best to proof it first. You want to make sure it’s still alive so you don’t go wasting all those ingredients. Give the yeast a bath of warm liquid, a little sugar for food and leave it covered for 15 minutes. If it starts to go frothy (and it gives off a lovely bread-y aroma) you’re good to go.
The dough is really simple. I mixed all the dry ingredients together in a bowl, made a well in the centre and added all the wet stuff.
After working it all together it looked like this:
The dough is relatively sticky so I opted to knead it in the bowl with the spatula at first, then with greased hands after.
While it’s proofing you can get everything else set up. These cakes are typically coiled around moulds and cooked over coals on a rotating spit. In the home kitchen, a little improvisation is required. We were provided with a recipe that called for 4 wooden rolling pins. I have two, only one wooden, so I had to bend the rules even further. I covered my one wooden rolling pin in al foil and decided these were going to have to be baked one at a time.
I rolled out a quarter of the dough and used a pizza cutter to cut out a coil shape.
Then the rolling pin is brushed with melted butter so the dough won’t adhere to the al foil.
I wrapped the dough around the rolling pin, then rolled it over the bench to flatten it out a bit.
Then I brushed it in butter and rolled it in my topping. The original recipe called for walnut sugar, but I was putting my own twist on these babies so I made up a hazelnut sugar mixture instead.
Once baked they slid off the rolling pin quite easily. I turned them to sit upright on the cooking rack, and as soon as the rolling pin was removed all the steam started billowing upwards from out of the centre. I’m fairly sure it had nothing to do with the naming of this treat, but it really gave the cake the effect of a smoking chimney. Sadly I couldn’t get it to show up and any of the photos.
Once they were cooled I smeared the insides with melted nutella, which is why I decided to pair it with the hazelnut sugar on the outside.
I had no idea what to expect from this little treat, but it was amazing. I mean, anything with nutella tends to disappear pretty quickly in this household, but these disappeared especially fast.
Our challenge was to make one of the two treats provided, but I couldn’t help but try my hand at both. The second recipe was for ensaimadas. I suspect I did something wrong in this one because right from the onset the dough didn’t feel right.
They tasted nice enough, but mine seemed too risen, too bread-y. Not what all the other photos looked like.
I’m definitely going to have to revisit it and come back with a more successful post. Check out the DB post for the ensaimada recipe.
Meantime here’s how I made the kürtőskalács:
|Nutella Cimney Cakes
240g (8.5oz) plain flour
7g dry yeast
120ml milk, slightly warmed
2 tbsp caster sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 free range egg
Topping and Filling