Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Cherry and Oatmeal Cloverleaf Buns

Hey, how about some bread? These aren't super-sweet, or I guess it depends on the type of dried cherries you use - sweet or tart.

These buns are nice with butter or a little cream cheese for breakfast or brunch, but they'd also be nice as a dinner roll with pork or with something spicy, like chili.

Of course, if you don't like cherries or you don't happen to have them on hand, you could use any other dried fruit you like.

By the way, you can buy oat flour, and if you have that you can use it. But it's more likely that I'll have rolled oats that I can grind than that I'd have oat flour stashed away.

Cherry and Oatmeal Cloverleaf Buns

1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup dry cherries
1 cup water
2 tablespoons honey
2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast
2 cups (9 ounces) bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, softened

Spray 12-cup muffin pan with baking spray - it’s not completely necessary, but I like the added insurance.

Put the oats in a blender or food processor and blend until you have a powder. Add the cherries and pulse until they’re roughly chopped. You could certainly chop the cherries by hand, but since the machine is already dirty, you might as well use it, right?

Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix slowly until mostly combined, then increase the speed and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic. The cherries will make the dough bumpy, but the dough itself should be smooth. You can also mix in a standard mixing bowl and knead by hand.

Cover the bowl and set aside in a warm place to rise until the dough is doubled in size, about an hour.

Flour your work surface and turn out the dough. Divide into 12 roughly even pieces. Divide each piece into three smaller pieces so you have 36 small balls of dough.

Place three balls in each of the muffin cups. Cover the pan and set aside to rise until doubled in size. You'll know the dough is ready to shove in the oven when you poke it gently with your finger and the indent remains, or it fills in slowly.

When the buns are risen, bake at 350 degrees until nicely browned, 20-25 minutes. Remove the buns from the pan and let them cool on a rack.