Monday, March 12, 2012

Fluffy Pillows of Yeasty Goodness

Once upon a time and long, long ago in a different universe we would yearn and pine for the day when the high school cafeteria ladies would serve their famous yeast rolls.  This was not a localized phenomena, if you look on the web there are people all over this country with a soft spot in their hearts for the yeast rolls of their childhood school cafeteria.  Sadly, today's kids will never know this yeasty bliss. 

I have tried for years to replicate the ultimate softness and airiness of these remembered rolls.  Today, with the stars in perfect alignment and atmospheric conditions ideal, I reached their lofty peaks.

                    Fluffy Pillows of Yeasty Goodness
Serving Size  : 8     (yeah, right)

  1                cup  water
  2          teaspoons  brown sugar ( I used Sugar in the Raw)
  2          teaspoons  yeast
  1           teaspoon  salt
  2        tablespoons  milk
  3               cups  flour
  2        tablespoons  butter -- melted and cooled

  1. Mix everything in the dough cycle of the bread machine.
  2. When rise is complete, turn out onto floured board and divide into 8 pieces.
  3. Place dough pieces in a greased cake pan.
  4. Let rise in a warm place (I use the microwave) for 40 minutes, until doubled.
  5. Brush with more melted butter.
  6. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven, brush with more melted butter.  Turn out on wire rack to dry bottoms.

Any remaining melted butter can be added to each roll as it is eaten!

We had these rolls with almost meatless "Crab" chowder.  This is an easy, tasty and inexpensive soup.  I like imitation crab and lobster, it makes a lovely salad with lots of celery and a tiny bit of Mayo.

                              "Crab" Chowder
Serving Size  : 4   
  2             strips  bacon -- diced
     1/2           cup  onion -- diced
     1/2           Cup  celery -- diced
     1/2           cup  red pepper -- diced
  1           Teaspoon  salt and pepper
  1           teaspoon  Old Bay Seafood seasoning
  2               cups  chicken stock
  1                can  evaporated milk
  1                cup  potatoes -- diced
  1            package  imitation crab -- flaked
  2        tablespoons  potato pearls or flakes

  1. Get out a large pot and start rendering the bacon! (This is the almost meatless part)
  2. Add the onion,celery, and red pepper.  Let it sweat.
  3. Now add the stock.  Then add the entire can of evaporated milk and the potatoes. Cover
  4. Simmer, simmer, simmer until the potatoes are soft.
  5. Stir in the fish and bring back to a simmer.  Add the potato pearls or flakes to thicken.  Let simmer for 10 minutes.  Adjust seasoning.
  6. Serve

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