I’ve been watching reruns of Supernatural… and dreaming of ghouls and goblins and spirits… evil and good… and sage and garlic, and potato bread with cheddar.
I got that from my mum, my fondness for the macabre. She reared us on tales of witches and goblins, and scary sandmen, and old men with huge sacks who materialised out of thin air, only to snatch kids from their beds in the middle of the night. You’d think she half wanted to scare us to death with those stories. But we survived them and she, all three of us.
Not that we weren’t scared. I grew up terrified of the dark and made sure I tucked my sheets under me securely when I slept, just in case… but nothing supernaturally scary ever grabbed my feet or appeared in front of me as the Clock struck 12 or was it 3 am… the witching hour. But I wasn’t lucky enough to even catch a shadow of a glimpse of something remotely scary, or a glimpse of a shadow… If I did I would probably be six feet under.
I finally saw Psycho, when I was in my twenties. The original Anthony Perkins version, with my mum, who else, through the cracks in my fingers. And those were the non scary scenes. It took another 5 or was it 10 years for me to watch the entire film… on DVD. A camera may add 10 pounds, but a small screen works wonders with reducing fear. After all, you can perhaps count on sage and garlic to keep evil spirits at bay, but there are no protective herbs to ward off Mama Bates’ cross-dressing psychotic son.
By the way I love garlic… cooked of course, not raw. Roasted it’s even better, magically transforming its pungency into something sweet and a bit nutty. How lovely is that. And I love sage and have been dying to bake a sage and potato bread, but didn’t want to do any old potato bread. So I bunged in some mild yellow cheddar (a cupful), about 5 cloves of roasted and chopped garlic, with one rather large potato (parboiled till almost done and grated) and 1 1/2 tablespoons of chopped sage into a bowl and kept it aside while I went about activating the yeast and preparing the rest of the dough.. 1 cup of whole-wheat to 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour (+ extra for kneading/dusting as required). Add to that 2 teaspoons salt and 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, and you’ve got your dough on the go.
It took about 2 hours for the dough to almost treble. And once I saw it, I knew I had the makings of a delightful loaf in hand. The only question was… Did I want a loaf of bread or something different. So I tossed around a few ideas in my head before finally settling in to making Kaiser Rolls.
I punched back the dough, gave it a good knead and rolled it out into a log before cutting it into 14 pieces. Rolling each piece into a ball, then covering and letting them stand for 15 minutes before shaping the rolls.
And here comes the fun part.
Step 1… Flatten each ball of dough into a circle using the tips of your fingers
Step 2… Fold one end in
I scattered some seeds on the parchment paper as well, so the rolls were well and truly embellished. Then upturned them for another 15 minutes before popping them into the oven. One lot on a parchment lined tray.
Definitely worth a trip to YeastSpotting.
And here they are… my Sage, Roasted Garlic, Potato and Cheddar Kaiser Rolls.