Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Rosie Makes Kimmelweck Rolls.

Rosie makes Kimmelweck Rolls. Is that like saying ATM machine? At the Outer Banks Taste of the Beach Expo, these little rolls, offered by Magnolia Grille, caught my attention. I didn't try them since I didn't want to fill up on bread, but I was intrigued by them. I was told they were called Kimmelweck Rolls. I love the SLURP in the background. I love the helper at the booth, bending over to ARTICULATE into my ear, because the situation required it. First, a bit of history. These little rolls hail from Buffalo, New York, also the home of Buffalo Wings, which, in the not so distant past, were relegated as undesirable chicken parts, scraps only worthy of the stock or soup pot. Teresa Bellissimo of the Anchor Bar came up with her inspired creation on October 30, 1964, when faced with feeding her son and friends a late snack. Encountering an excess of chicken wings on hand, she fried them up, dipped them in a spicy, buttery chile sauce, and served them with a celery and blue cheese dressing as a dipping sauce to cut the heat. The Buffalo Wings were an instant hit. Long before the Buffalo Wings came onto the culinary landscape, Buffalo already had a signature food - Kummelweck, alternatively spelled kimmelweck. Basically, a kimmelweck is a Kaiser roll topped with a coarse salt and caraway seeds. Inside the roll, very thin slices of roast beef are piled high and the whole thing is served with a dish of "au jus" and accompanied by a pot of freshly grated, sinus-cleaning horseradish. The name of the roll, kummelweck, is German and comes from "kummel" (caraway seed) and "weck" (roll). Correct me if I'm wrong, Mr. Xmaskatie. It is believed that a German baker, William Wahr, brought the kummelweck to Buffalo from the Black Forest. German immigrants had already made Buffalo a center of brewing. The breweries owned most of the taverns in town and offered sumptuous free lunches to their customers. Tables were laden with ham, pickled pigs' feet, sardines, pickled herring, and "beef on weck," all accompanied by hot mustards, raw onions, and horseradish. The tavern keepers knew what they were doing. They served extremely salty foods, so that their customers built up a thirst that could only be slaked by repeated trips to the bar. No "free lunches" any more, but beef on weck is still readily available and goes quite well with a tall, cold beer. With that bit of history out of the way, let's start on the Kimmelweck.
Kimmelweck Rolls 1 envelope active dry yeast 1 cup water, lukewarm 2 TB vegetable oil 1 TB sugar 1/2 TB salt 1 tsp honey or barley malt syrup 2 large egg whites 3 - 3 1/4 cups bread flour 1 TB water coarse salt caraway seed Sprinkle the yeast over 1/4 cup of the lukewarm water in a small bowl. Set aside to proof about 5 minutes. (I always sprinkle a bit of sugar over the yeast to help it along. Maybe 2 teaspoons.) Combine the remaining 3/4 cup lukewarm water, the oil, sugar, salt, barley malt syrup or honey, and 1 egg white in a large mixing bowl. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Add 1 1/2 cups of flour and mix. Add yeast mixture and additional 1 1/2 cups flour. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic but still slightly tacky to the touch, adding only as much additional flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking. Transfer to a large greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set in a warm area to rise until doubled. An hour or two. Punch dough down, cover bowl again, and let rise a second time, for about 30 - 60 minutes. Return dough to the work surface and divide it into 8 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a smooth round. Place on parchment-lined or greased baking sheet, well spaced to allow for spreading. Cover loosely and let rise for about 30 minutes. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Combine the remaining egg white and 1 TB water, blend well, and brush rolls lightly with egg white wash. Score 4 crescent-shaped slits into each roll with very sharp knife, radiating out from the center. Sprinkle the rolls with coarse salt and caraway seeds and sprinkle with water. Bake for 5 minutes. Quickly open the oven door and sprinkle the rolls again with water. Close oven and bake rolls for about 20 minutes more, until browned and crisp.
Here's my yeast going into about 1/4 cup water. And sprinkle a teaspoon or two of sugar over top to help the proofing.
As you know, I don't like to waste anything, so I rinsed out the yeast packet with water to get every little grain. Set aside and let the yeast "proof." And you will soon see the importance of this step.
In a large bowl, combine remaining 3/4 cup water, 2 TB vegetable oil ...
1 TB sugar ...
1/2 TB salt ...
1 tsp honey ...
and 1 egg white.
Mix well.
Add in 1 1/2 cups bread flour. Now, it's been about 7-10 minutes and I'm checking on my yeast.
This yeast did not proof. Toss it and start another batch. Aren't you glad you learned the yeast wasn't good ahead of time?
I started another batch and this "proofed." See how foamy and bubbly it is? This means the yeast is active.
Pour yeast mixture into flour mixture. Mix well.
Add in 1 1/2 cups of flour, gradually.
Turn out onto a lightly floured board.
And start kneading.
I kneaded for about 10 minutes. Notice my extra 1/4 cup of flour. Barely used any of it. Just enough to sweep over the board. Turn the dough into a large greased bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Rosie Tip #621: I always take a wet towel, nuke it for about 90 seconds, so it's nice and hot and steamy, and wrap my bowl of dough with plastic and hot/steamy towel, and keep it in the enclosure of the microwave for rising. The heat and the steam give an extra boost.
Let double in bulk. About 2 hours.
My favorite part - the punch down.
This is very elastic and pliable. Nice dough. Again, cover, do the towel trick, and let rise for another 30 - 60 minutes.
Here's mine in about an hour.
I turned the dough out onto my lightly floured board.
Gave it a few kneads, then divided it into 8 rounds. Knowing how big they got, when I do this again, I'll probably make 12 - 16 instead of 8.
I poured my remaining egg white in a larger bowl.
Added 1 TB of water.
Mixed well.
I liked this picture.
Here are all my pretty little rolls waiting for their egg white bath.
Just brush lightly with the wash.
Pretty, shiny little rolls.
I used a razor to make the crescent slits on top.
Caraway and sea salt mix.
Sprinkle over top.
Quick sprinkle of water over top and into a 425 degree oven for 5 minutes. Then another quick sprinkle and bake for about 20 more minutes.
Oh my.
These are beautiful.
And delicious. Now if I only had some thinly sliced beef and horseradish.
I see a flat-iron steak is in my very near future.


Anonymous said...

Oh my is right !!

Anonymous said...

zzzadig said...

Absolutely beeeeutiful, and wonderfully illustrated. Even though I normally avoid flour and baking like the plague, I'm going to have to make these immediately.

March 18, 2010 7:30 AM

Rosie Hawthorne said...

zzzadig, I moved your comment from my St. Pat's Day post to here.

Pauline Cozzy (VT) said...

My dad (native from Buffalo) loved these. My husband and I were trying to remember the name of the roll and stumbled upon your page. You've inspired me! I'll go and get the ingredients and try them this weekend! THANK YOU - for the clear directions.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Thank you, Pauline.
Please stumble through my blog.

debcafferty said...

William Wahr is my Great Great Grand Uncle!!!! No kidding. He immigrated from Germany in 1882. His sister, Eva married my Great Great Grandfather, Frederick J. Schraft. The recipe was lost through the generations but I will be trying this one!!! Debra Cafferty Buffalo, New York