Sunday, April 24, 2005
IMBB#14: Orange You Hungry? Sweet Potato Rolls with Chili & Cheese
Whew! Busy weekend, neh? SHF over and done, we promptly proceeded to the month of April's Is My Blog Burning? event! And color me Orange, Ladygoat over at Foodgoat (or is it both of them? Hmm...) asked us all "Orange you hungry?"
I started out thinking I had to do something with oranges, but nooooo - this is the first color-coordinated IMBB-event, and you could use any kind of ingredient or dish that would turn out orange for your entry. I've done colored (green and yellow) dinners for my Food Club girlfriends a couple of times, so I can't wait to see how this turns out - it has got to be one of the editions that will show the greatest diversity of recipes!
On to the matter at heart, I chose sweet potatoes as my ingredient. The orange variety, naturally, even though I had some problems finding them - they're not used that much around this hood (so much for Danish cooking, eih? Hold your horses, we'll get there!:-)).
I wanted to do something that I served all the time when I worked at Bali Sugar in London. We served all kinds of flavored rolls, fennel seeds, scezhuan pepper, plantain etc. - but people were always mesmerized by the bright orange one in the basket: the sweet potato roll.
Luckily the recipe is in The Sugar Club cookbook, and I've tried it before. This time I went ahead and did a little substituting and adding and adapted it to rise overnight in the fridge - and got this:
Sweet Potato Rolls with Chili & Cheese - adapted from The Sugar Club Cookbook by Peter Gordon
500 g. sweet potato, peeled and cut into 2 cm dice
400 ml. milk
10 g. fresh yeast (I think the equivalent would be around 1½ teaspoon dried yeast?) dissolved in 50 ml. warm water
Flour - I used about 200 g. sifted spelt flour and um... just enough regular white flour!
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 handfuls of grated cheese (I used a mild cheddar) - you could probably up the amount to 3 handfuls of a stronger cheese, if you were so inclined.
Chili flakes for the tops
Put the sweet potato and milk in a pot, put the lid on and bring to the boil. Cook until the potato is done, then remove the lid and boil until the milk has reduced by half. This will mush up the potatoes somewhat, but I still choose to strain them, reserving the liquid. Then I proceeded to puré the potatoes with an immersing blender (is that the word? The "blender-on-a-stick", if you know what I mean?), adding enough liquid to make it into a smooth paste. If you like chunks in the rolls, leave this part out, and just use it as is - I suppose a lot of the chunks will dissolve when you knead the dough anyways. Let the puré cool.
Add the yeast to the cool potato puré, then add the salt. Add enough flour to make a moist, but not sticky dough. The original recipe calls for 800 g of flour, but I have no idea exactly how much I used - start by adding about 500 grams, then go from there. Knead, knead, knead. Add the cheese last.
Shape the dough into a ball, put it in an oiled bowl and turn it over to coat. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave it overnight in the fridge. I think mine waited about 14 hours, but 2-3 hours less shouldn't make a difference.
The next morning, punch (no, don't knock it! Gently deflate it!;-)) down the dough, roll it into a sausage shape, then cut it into similarly sized slices - I got 14. Shape the slices into rolls - first make a rough ball-shaped thing, then cup your hand on top of the roll, letting your fingertips touch the table and moving the ball around underneath your cupped palm. This will give you perfectly shaped rolls - if that explanation makes any sense!
Leave to rise for 2 hours - one is enough if your hungry. Preheat your oven to 175 C. Brush with a little water, sprinkle chili flakes on top, then bake for about 15 minutes. Leave on a rack to cool slightly, or eat as soon as they're out of the oven. Or eat three within the first 2 hours after they've come out of the oven...:-)
The cheese-taste could be more pronounced, but they have a slightly sweet taste from the sweet potato, and a nice kick from the chili on top - and a FABULOUS orange color! Next time I might try adding a little chili flakes to the dough, as they get a little bit hot whenever you bite into a single flake on top - at least it would be masked in the dough the other way. Maybe chili powder? Must think about that one. They're soft rolls, and perfect for accompanying a dinner of, say roast tiger shrimps with mayo and a tomato/rocket/pine nut salad, like we did!
Now I have to check out all the other contributions - the next Food Club Dinner shall be ORANGE!