Saturday, November 3, 2012

Olive stuffed whole wheat rolls

I have a few jars of olives that I brought here to AZ from Austin, you know, my old company Foods of the Gods.  So I took a jar of Provolone Cheese Stuffed Green Olives packed in Shiner Bock Beer.  So I thought those would be perfect for stuffing into rolls.  They have a spectacular beer flavor and the cheese melts when they are warm and that salty bite of the olives, yummmmmmmy.

So, to start, make a nice stiff whole wheat dough.  3 cups warm water, 2 tablespoons honey, a tablespoon of yeast and a teaspoon of sea salt.  Add enough whole wheat flour to make a thick paste.  Allow to sit and rise at least 2 or 3 hours.  Overnight works as well.  This is just to get a lot of the bran saturated with liquid so that you can make a stiffer dough. 
Mix in enough whole wheat flour to make a semi stiff dough and knead for 9 minutes.  It should pull away from the bowl and look like this, still a tiny bit sticky, but stiffer than normal for whole wheat loaves.  Cover a couple sheet pans with parchment paper.  Take a golf ball sized piece of dough and flatten it out a bit.  Then drain three olives and place them cheese hole down.

 Pull the edges up around the olives and pinch together to form a tight ball of dough surrounding the olives.  The holes with the cheese stuffed into them need to be pointing down that way when you form the ball, and place seam side down, the open end will be pointing up and the cheese when it melts in the baking process won't come out into the roll but will stay in the olives.

 Once you have the first one done, continue to make the rest of the rolls using all the olives.  Certainly you can stuff a lot of different things in there, Italian sausage and peppers and onions.  Scrambled eggs, bacon, cheese.  Almond butter and raspberry preserves.  Kimchee.  Sauteed mushrooms and onions in a Marsala sauce.  Feta cheese, spinach and garlic.  Olive relish.  Chopped weiners and pickle relish with mustard.  Hey, use the old noggin and come up with your favorite.
Let them rise about a half hour or a bit longer if needed, until at least double in size.  Take a razor blade and cut a cross in the top of the buns.  The cut is actually necessary.  It helps the rolls to rise up and not outward.  As the dough sits rising a tough skin forms around the roll.  Same for loaves.  It you cut the top, when you toss into the oven, the heat causes a huge burst of yeast activity and a tremendous growth in the roll.  If the tops are not cut so that rising can go up, then the entire roll will expand outward, and sometimes split if the skin is dry enough.  

Bake at 400 for about 20 to 24 minutes, or until nice and browned.  Cool, bag to freeze some.  Heat to serve and serve with lots of mustard. 

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