A sweet surprise after all treats December had for us. Elle had something planned for January that was on my bucketlist forever. Fantans! Slices of dough standing upright in a bread tin –or in this case muffin tin- smeared with jam. As the name says they are supposed to fan out when risen and done.
Have to say this was a strange dough.. in more than one way. First of all the ingredient list states you need “non-fat evaporated milk” which I first read as powdered milk… NOT! Informed sources tell me this is the canned stuff, same as condensed milk but unsweetened? Can’t remember and if I could it wouldn’t help me because I didn’t have any. By the way, and totally unrelated to the recipe: Don’t you wonder what the heck is IN there after they evaporated the liquid… and got rid of the fat to make it non-fat? I mean… what IS that stuff?
So after some discussion with my baking sisters we decided to use cream, greek yoghurt, milk, buttermilk with some extra flour. (Or / either / combined / mixed you get the drift; making it happen in true Babe fashion).
Then we needed a whole wheat sourdough starter…. not going to happen overnight right? But hang on to your panties, you can also use yeast! I had some biga in the fridge which I fed and nurtured for two days and then used this in the dough. Ilva used a fake sourdough starter, please go over there to see if she posted about it.
So, I used my biga, measuring out the same amount as the starter was supposed to be.
I don’t / can’t remember what else I did, some combination of yoghurt and milk. But… the funny thing is, that in the end I was left with two cups of flour in the bowl while kneading a fully acceptable dough?! Very very strange! So I suppose I’m not the role model for this challenge. Something somewhere went wrong.
Let’s just continue with that acceptable dough, it was easy to roll out, Elle provided us with strict (and very helpful) instructions of how to brush the dough so that you would end up with a naked doughstrip touching the sides of your muffin pan. Why that matters? A clean piece of dough on the outside makes for easy removal! Worked a charm.
Brushing I did with pesto, a few with hummus, some with ginger jam, two of them were sugar cinnamon. Baked in two batches because somehow I had leftover strip stacks after filling my 12 muffin pan holes. The second batch rose higher and fanned out much more than the first batch did.
A couple of reasons could have caused that:
- the longer rest? (waiting for the first batch to bake)
- sweet filling? (accidentally these were all sweet ones)
- butter under the jam/sugar? (didn’t butter the savoury ones)
- baked too long on too high a temp? (first batch)
Which did we like best? I am one for savory anyway but have to admit here that the sweet ones were better. I think not so much flavour wise but the dough was softer, more risen, thus better. The hearty ones were almost cracker like, crunchy exterior, softer interior. The interior was airy enough as you can see. Strange. Not completely satisfied so the fantans will stay a while longer on the to-bake list. I really would like to try again.
For the recipe I refer you to Elle, but…. she is not feeling all too well at the moment so her post may be delayed. Please keep an eye out for it!
Don’t forget to check out my fellow Babes, and of course for the round-up go to our BBBBBB (Bitchin' Bread Baking Babe Bibliothécaire) Katie
As for our Babes; we had some changes in the last couple of months, Mary, Susan and Sara left us and we welcome a new Babe that goes by the name of Jamie!! Blogging at Life’s a Feast, a very talented writer and photographer, a true world citizen now living in France with her husband and family. Welcome to Babe-ness Jamie!
Calling out all Buddies: To receive a Baking Buddy Badge to display on your site: bake Fan Tans in the next couple of weeks and post about them (we love to see how your bread turns out AND hear what you think about it – what you didn’t like and/or what you liked) before the 29 January 2013. If you do not have a blog, no problem; you can also post your picture(s) to Facebook or Flickr (or any other photo sharing site) and record your thoughts about the bread there. Please remember to email the Kitchen of the Month with a link and Fan Tans as subject to say that your post is up.