Although I’ve not had much experience with it during my brief life, I’ve always been fascinated by booze. Beer, wine, liquor, all of those strange and unique drinks made from odd ingredients with odd flavors, filled with that mysterious thing called alcohol. Why do people like it so much? What is the appeal of those musty-smelling bottles anyway? What is alcohol like? Does it hurt? How does it feel getting drunk? Aren’t you embarrassed by your behavior? Why are you acting like this? Are you okay? Can you hear me? Why are you crouching under the table like that?
|Jus takin a quick breather, no need tah worry. source|
But I am interested by the way people seem to enjoy these refreshing beverages, I am even more afraid of the negative repercussions of one too many. The idea of one’s mental state being altered by a simple drink is sort of scary to me. I like my lucid thoughts. I like to think I can have a good time just as I am (although that is a delusion, obviously).
And I have seen what can happen. Nothing bad, thankfully (and to those who have, I am deeply sorry). To keep it nice and succinct, let’s just say the Irish side of my family likes a good party and
always that involves a few bottles of Jameson’s’ and Guinness. That, and the Bailey’s. Can’t live without Bailey’s.
Not too proud to say I learned the recipe for an Irish car bomb at the age of twelve,
as well as why you should never ever ever ever order that in an Irish bar—lest you
find yourself running out of any Irish luck you ever had.
According to this here blog, I’ve never been offered any illict swigs.
So it would come as no surprise that I have frequently used booze in my baking adventures. Quite a few years ago I remember being surprised that my mother let me use a few glugs of Kahlua when whipping up a variation on bananas foster. Amaretto has made an appearance an appearance in a few desserts. I’ve made Cooking Light’s Irish bread pudding a few times and added more than few drops of liquor to my caramel.
I mean, damn. June is such a rebel. A goddamn outlaw, I’d say.
|Yes sir we do. source|
More than anything, I’d love to use one of those fancy flavored vodkas. Like, whipped cream vodka? What the fuck does that even taste like? Sweet milk? Does that work in vodka pasta sauce?
|No. You've gone too far. source|
Until then, I will have to have tastings in my imagination and hope that sort of kid-friendly booze is still on the shelves in a few years. But for now I can keep to my baking. You know, as a way of discreetly consuming alcohol.
Today, I have found a way to incorporate liquor into a breakfast food. Meaning this is perfect for brunch. Then again, basically everything is perfect for brunch.
|YES YES ALL OF IT source|
Because I am still ridden with way too many fresh strawberries, I have taken it upon myself to use them in another delicious carby creation. There’s coconut too. Gotta make my Flavor Bible proud.
And boy oh boy, these babies are crazy good.
I think, maybe, possibly, perhaps I made them a little too large. A little too much bread and not enough filling. That isn’t always a bad thing, but you gotta have a good bread / filling ratio, amirite?
So if you choose to make these (and of course you will) you may want to roll out the dough a little thinner than the instructions say. Maybe smear on a bit more filling while you’re at it.
But don’t skimp on the pan sauce. Holy shit, that stuff is a revelation—I’ve never made cinnamon rolls or sweet rolls with anything like it before, but now I will never be able to make them without it. Sweet, fluffy rolls, soaked in butter and sugar. Picture it. Imagine it. Dream it. Embrace it. Love it. Live it. Be the pan sauce, eat the pan sauce, drink the pan sauce. Let it soak into your every pore, because trust me, you’ll need it.
|And so we begin.|
Strawberry coconut sweet rolls with Grand Marnier glaze
Makes twelve large buns
Adapted from Vegan Yum Yum
16 grams • active dry yeast • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon
6 grams • granulated sugar • 1 teaspoon
240 grams • water, heated to 110 degrees F • 1 cup
244 grams • nondairy milk • 1 cup
133 grams • granulated sugar • 2/3 cup
150 grams • coconut oil • 2/3 cup
12 grams • salt • 2 teaspoons
124 grams • mashed banana (or 2 egg replacers) • ½ cup
750 grams • all-purpose flour (plus more for kneading) • 6 cups
28 grams • coconut oil, melted • 2 tablespoons
310 grams • strawberries, sliced • 2 cups
15 grams • chia seeds • 1 tablespoon
40 grams • maple syrup • 2 tablespoons
4 grams • orange zest • 1 tablespoon
60 grams • shredded, unsweetened coconut • ¾ cup
25 grams • granulated sugar • ¼ cup
113 grams • nondairy butter, melted • ½ cup
67 grams • granulated sugar • 1/3 cup
Glaze (adapted from Fine Cooking)
226 grams • granulated sugar • 2 cups
60 grams • Grand Marnier • ¼ cup
46 grams • nondairy milk or creamer • 3 tablespoons
To make dough, start by combining active dry yeast, that one little teaspoon of sugar, and water in a small bowl. Set aside to proof. This will take about ten minutes.
In a medium saucepan, combine nondairy milk, sugar, coconut oil, salt, and tofu in a saucepan. Heat until butter is melted, but don’t let it get too hot. Make sure it is about 110 degrees F before you combine it with the yeast mixture, which is the next step.
Place 4 cups of flour in a large bowl. Add yeast / coco oil mixture and stir well. Add the remaining 2 cups of flour and stir just until combined. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and begin to knead. It will take about 8 minutes to get to the ideal stage—if kneaded (haha punnnnn), you can consult the video on Vegan Yum Yum’s page.
Once the dough is ready, place it in a greased bowl covered with greased plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place for about 90 minutes. When the dough is fully risen, it will leave an indent when you poke it.
In the meantime, make the filling. Place strawberries, chia seeds, maple syrup, and orange zest in a saucepan. Heat to boiling, then use a potato masher or fork to mash the strawberries. Turn off heat and add chia seeds. Let sit until thickened and cooled. In a separate bowl, mix shredded coconut and granulated sugar and set aside. For pan sauce, simply combine the two ingredients in a bowl.
Once dough is risen, turn out onto a floured surface and pat or roll out into a 15 x 20 inch rectangle. Brush melted coconut oil over the entire surface, then cover it with cooled chia jam. Sprinkle coconut sugar mixture over that.
Roll up dough from one of the short sides, being gentle and careful to ensure that it is rolled up nice and tight. Cut into twelve segments using sewing thread or a serrated knife (I use the knife, but you have to be extra careful with that).
Pour pan sauce in a large baking dish, such as a lasagna dish, and swish it around to cover all sides. Place cinnamon rolls in pan, being sure to space evenly. Cover and let rise in a warm place for another 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake buns for about 25 to 30 minutes until they are golden brown and bubbly. Let cool for a few minutes before adding glaze. To make glaze, whisk all ingredients in a bowl until smooth. Drizzle that shit on like a mofo. Nosh.
|Mmmm, boozy glaze.|
Because this was somewhat of an experimental recipe, I was unsure if these were going to come out well, or even edible. They were kind of mushy when I rolled them up, which didn’t do much to assuage my doubts, but as you can see they baked up quite well—not mushy or overly moist at all, perfect for soaking up lots of delicious sweet glaze.
|There's a roll under that, you say?|
The coconut oil lent the dough a nice mild flavor, but the filling is really where these rolls shine. Orange, coconut, and strawberry is totally going to be my new go-to summer flavor. Tastes like the tropics.
Especially with Grand Marnier. Doesn’t that sound like a particularly exciting liqueur? Grand MarnYAY? Like, as in, yay? No? Okay.