Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Jam Fantans!

So far this year there have been a lot of changes in my life. And we are only two weeks into the new year!

One child moved out, another moved back in - bringing with him a giant dog. Actually, he is fitting in pretty nicely, even my shih tzus like him. I don't even mind walking him in the early morning, but then again it has been pretty mild this winter. Ask me again when the temps drop.

My food blog turned food/book blog over the years and recently I made the commitment to full book blogging. Did I ever mention how much I love books? A lot. I have been known to smell them in bookstores and especially used bookstores. Maybe one day e-readers will come with scent boosters for those of us who miss book-smell. But for now I prefer good old paper books. I like the tactile feel and of course the smell.

Which is not to say that I don't also love the smell of fresh baked bread - that is definitely a favourite. And even though I slightly over-baked these Jam Fantans - they smelled and tasted divine.

Elle is our Hostess Babe of the month and presented this jammy goodness as a winter treat. Everyone had fun subbing in their own filling so I did the same - I used the Italian Prune and Cardamom Conserve, from The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook by Rachel Saunders. (Below)

I don't know yet where the fantan recipe comes from - but when I do I'll let you know.

(And if you'd like to know about what bread books I use - check out the list on my sidebar.)

I am a bit of an everyone into the pool baker, and basically threw everything I needed into the mixer, starting with the smaller amount of flour and adding in the rest as it needed. 

My kitchen is not warm, so I gave the dough 2 hours for each rise. We then sat down for a congratulations party for my son (who found a job in town) and proceeded to forget that I had stuff in the oven. Now would be the time that I would normally blame my husband for not replacing my timer batteries.... but he had done so 2 weeks ago and I have nobody to blame but myself. Luckily - the fantans are very fragrant and let me know to take them out of the oven. A little crispy around the edges but still delicious. 

Elle's Kitchen
Sweet Orange Marmalade Fantan Rolls
Recipe and prep photos below 

provided by Bread Baking Babe Elle

and she will soon have the recipe posted with information 
on how you can be a Bread Baking Buddy! 

Makes 12 rolls

stand mixer with hook attachment (or mixing bowl and wooden spoon)
large mixing bowl, lightly coated with cooking spray (or clean, if you prefer)
12 cup standard muffin tin, buttered

3-4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup whole wheat bread flour 1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 cup whole wheat sourdough starter OR 1 package of RapidRise yeast mixed with ¼ cup warm water
Elle's Kitchen
1 cup non fat evaporated milk
¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
¼ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup egg substitute OR 1 egg, lightly beaten
½ teaspoon vanilla
6 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, divided
2/3 cup marmalade (about), warmed

Sift 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, the 1 cup of whole wheat bread flour, salt, and nutmeg into a large mixing bowl. Stir until well blended. Set aside.

Placed evaporated milk, butter and maple syrup into a saucepan and heat until butter is nearly melted. Remove from heat. Stir a few minutes to help mixture cool. Let cool to 110 degrees F.

Add yeast (sourdough or fresher) mixture to milk mixture, then add milk mixture to flour mixture; beat well. Add egg and vanilla; stir until blended. Add 1 cup all-purpose flour, stir until thoroughly incorporated. Gradually add enough of the remaining flour to make a soft dough that is rather sticky.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead 3 minutes or until dough is smooth and silky. (Add additional flour if needed while kneading, but only enough to keep it from sticking a lot.) Place in oiled (or clean if you are Elizabeth) bowl, turn dough to lightly coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise for 1 ½ to 2 hours.

Dust your work surface with flour. Punch down the dough, then halve it. Wrap one half in the plastic wrap and set aside. Roll the other half into a 12×12-inch (30.5×30.5 cm) square. You may have to roll slightly larger, and then trim the ends to even out the square. Brush dough with half the melted butter.

Elle's Kitchen

Spread the surface of the dough with about 1/2 the warmed marmalade, leaving 1/6 strip plain. This will allow you to have a plain side of dough on each side of the roll touching the muffin cup. Cut into 6 equal strips, then stack the strips on top of each other with the plain strip on top. Cut through the layers into 6 equal pieces,

Elle's Kitchen

then place each into a buttered muffin cup, standing up so the layers are visible. Gently fan them open. Each will have six dough pieces with marmalade or other filling in between. Repeat with the remaining dough and the rest of the marmalade for the other six cups of the muffin tin.

Elle's Kitchen

Cover with a tea towel and let the rolls rise in a draft free spot at warm room temperature until the dough doubles, about 1 to 1-1/2 hours. (Optional - I put a piece of plastic wrap between the rolls and the towel because of the sticky marmalade.)

Place the rack in the middle and preheat the oven to 375° F/190° C.

Remove the towel and bake the rolls until they are golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool in the pan ten minutes, then transfer to a rack and allow to cool for about another 20 minutes before serving. If desired, drizzle a glaze of 1 teaspoon milk whisked together with enough confectioners' sugar (icing sugar) to make a drizzle that will not spread too much. Use the tines of a fork to drizzle it on. Let dry before serving the rolls.

The Bread Baking Babes
Italian Prune & Cardamom Conserve
From The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook by Rachel Saunders

The term conserve typically refers to a jam involving both fresh and dried fruit, often with the addition of liquor, spices, and nuts. These preserves are traditionally served alongside savory dishes or with cheeses, as well as for breakfast. In this delicious fall conserve, Italian prune plums are accentuated by dried currants and a generous splash of plum brandy.

4 pounds pitted and halved Italian prune plums
1 1/2 pounds white cane sugar
3 ounces strained freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 ounces slivovitz or other dry plum brandy
2 ounces dried currants
1/2 teaspoon white cardamom seeds

Day 1
Place the prune plums, sugar, lemon juice, slivovitz, and currants into a glass or hard plastic storage container. Stir well to combine, cover tightly, and refrigerate for 48 to 72 hours, stirring once each day.

2 to 3 Days Later
Place a saucer with five metal teaspoons in a flat place in your freezer for testing the jam later.

Transfer the plum mixture to an 11- or 12-quart copper preserving pan or wide nonreactive kettle. Place the cardamom seeds into a fine-mesh stainless steel tea infuser with a firm latch and add it to the mixture.

Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently with a large heatproof rubber spatula. Continue to cook, monitoring the heat closely, until the conserve thickens, 35 to 45 minutes. Skim off any surface foam with a large stainless steel spoon. Scrape the bottom of the pan often with a heatproof rubber spatula, and decrease the heat gradually as more and more moisture cooks out of your conserve. For the final 10 to 15 minutes of cooking, stir the conserve nearly constantly to prevent burning.

To test the conserve for doneness, carefully transfer a small representative half-spoonful of conserve to one of your frozen spoons. Replace the spoon in the freezer for 3 to 4 minutes, then remove and carefully feel the underside of the spoon. It should be neither warm nor cold; if still warm, return it to the freezer for a moment.

Nudge the conserve gently with your finger; if it seems thickened and gloppy when you nudge it, it is either done or nearly done. Tilt the spoon vertically to see how quickly the conserve runs; if it runs very slowly, and if it has thickened to a gloppy consistency, it is done. If it runs very quickly or appears watery, cook it for another few minutes, stirring, and test again as needed.

 When the conserve is ready, remove the tea infuser, then skim any remaining foam and discard. Pour the conserve into sterilized jars and process according to the manufacturer’s instructions or as directed on page 52. (Or this page from Simply Canning)

Approximate Yield: five to six 8-ounce jars
Shelf Life: 18 months

The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook, by Rachel Saunders, is the definitive jam and marmalade cookbook of the 21st century. Using Blue Chair Fruit's modern sustainable approach to creating fresh and vividly flavored preserves, Rachel offers more than 100 original jam, jelly, and marmalade recipes, from Italian Lemon Marmalade to Early Girl Tomato Jam. She presents recipes by season, month, and type of fruit. The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook is a must-have resource for home and professional cooks everywhere, and has recently received a James Beard Foundation Award nomination for Best Food Photography!
See for more.