Thursday, September 23, 2010

High Holy Daze

I admit it. I've been MIA.

Rosh HaShannah was the 8th into the 9th. Yom Kippur was the 17th into the 18th. In between, my Nomi has begun school, there's been Shabbat, there have been doctor's appointments, laundry, dishes, finances, growth spurting Dina, the start of Hebrew/Religious School and generalized running on empty. Last night was Erev Sukkot, today is the beginning of Sukkot, and I feel like my brain is melting. If anyone wants to pick up a copy of today's TU, I'm on the lower half of the front page in a tallit and kippah, Dina in a Maya Wrap on one hip, playing Hinei Ma Tov on guitar on my other hip, in our congregational sukkah pre-candlighting, opening last night's services.

If nothing else, I did just pick up a night guard at my dentist, so that I can now cease and desist grinding my teeth into oblivion at night.

I have been concocting recipes in the meanwhile, of course. Our family does have to eat, despite the state of my brain. I blanched green beans in boiling water for 4-5 minutes, then doused them in a bath of lemon juice and ice. By osmosis, they became lemon beans, served cold and crisp as a side dish for a chard, caramelized onion and potato quiche and High Holy Day challah.

Truth be told, none of this is coming out the way I want it to yet. I'm working on it, but my brain is so full that my recipes are getting muddled. How muddled you ask?

I woke up Monday morning to find something dripping out of my cabinet. The night before, I'd put away my Stewart's Cookies and Cream Light Ice Cream in said cabinet vs. the freezer. At least it was in the dairy cabinet. Imagine if I'd somehow put it in with my meat dishes.

I am also in the middle of inventing Mexican Hot Chocolate Muffins thus named by the great Daniel B, aka Cinnamon Rolls with Chocolate Chips. I used my High Holy Day Challah Recipe (brioche dough with cinnamon and lemon zest), rolled it out flat and sprinkled with a blend of cinnamon, brown sugar, butter and cocoa powder. I will someday toss on some shaved chili chocolate for good measure - that first run through, what I had was Nestle. So, that's what I used.

I don't have it quite where I want it yet. I don't quite have anything quite where I want it yet. But. I'm putting one foot in front of the other and someday it will feel a bitt easier. In the meanwhile, test this one out for me. Let me know how it goes.

Mexican Hot Chocolate Muffins
Dough is adapted from AB in 5, and can be shaped into challah. One cantaloupe sized piece of dough becomes one loaf of turban shaped/round challah, baked in a greased 8 or 9 inch round cake pan for 40-50 min at 350 degrees, as per King Arthur Flour suggestions.

1 1/2 cups warm water
1 1/2 T salt
1 1/2 tsp yeast
1/2 cup honey
8 eggs
3 sticks butter, melted
7 cups all purpose flour
zest of 1 lemon
3 tsp cinnamon

6 T butter, softened
4 tsp cinnamon
4 tsp cocoa powder
1 cup brown sugar

1 bar Lindt Chili Chocolate, chopped or Dark Chocolate Chips

1. Mix all ingredients of dough, excepting flour. Add flour. Blend until just combined. Cover. Allow to rise until fallen, about 3 hours. Chill for at least 3 hours. Can be kept in refrigerator up to 5 days.

2. Preheat oven to 350. Grease two muffin tins. Using generous amounts of flour, break off 1/2 of dough. Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness. Spread filling over the top. Sprinkle over chocolate. Roll lengthwise, tightly. Slice into 1 inch think rolls. Place in pan. Allow to proof for 40 minutes for fresh dough or 1 hr 20 min for dough that has been chilled overnight or longer.

3. Bake for 25-30 minutes, rotating halfway. Remove from oven and remove from pan, allowing to cool on a wire rack. Share and enjoy for a special breakfast or dessert.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the praise. Although I'd rather get a compliment for my knife work than my pastry naming skills.

    But my knife work needs work. My knives need sharpening. And I need to cut about 1,000 more onions.

    Those muffins were tasty though. If you wanted to Mexican them up a bit more, You could add a swirl of sweetened cream cheese. I'm thinking back to the days of the panaderia in Berkeley. So many of the tasty treats had sweetened cheese. Drool.