It’s been a while since I last did a blog. I’ve been pretty busy with an online course I’m teaching.
This blog is about finger foods and neat things you can do with sourdough. It started a couple of days ago with a request. My son attends a program with other adults who have quite complex needs and they’re having a Christmas party. I was asked to supply some of the food and the criteria set for me what was that it needed to be
- easy to eat finger food: something you can pop in your mouth.
So I was wondering what to do. I had an idea of people being able to pop something fairly small into one’s mouth. I thought about using bread dough to surround a filling – sort of like an oven baked sandwich. Like Tim Hortons Timbits except healthier. A further criteria I also added was that I didn’t want it to be greasy: when it was picked up and eaten hands would remain clean.
I figured that if I rolled out a 66% hydration dough (your average bread dough) to about a quarter inch or so, trimmed to an even rectangle, about 12”/30cm x 4”/10cm that would be a good start.
I then brushed on melted butter (you need a fat hit in this kind of thing – but not too much). Next I added about half a teaspoon of filling, and wrapped it up so the filling is entirely cased in dough.
It went as I had envisaged and I’m very pleased with the results.
The two fillings I used in this particular case were a vegan ricotta analog: a block of tofu, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and parsley. It’s what I used for my cheeseless vegan lasagna. The other filling I made was a mix of diced red pepper and chicken burger from chicken burgers I made recently. But really, you can add any filling you want.
This is a food in the same tradition as filled pastries and croissants, somosas, calzones, ravioli, patties, pasties – even arguably fritters – except that instead of being several bites big, its one – at the most 2 -bites big. And unlike its culinary siblings, using a bread dough means its clean to the touch and contains a lot less fat, though just enough to make the taste amazing.
Assuming you bake bread, I’ll take the directions from the point where you have a dough that is bulk risen and ready for its final rise. For the quantities you see in these pictures, I started with about 700g of flour.
- Heat oven to 450F
- Roll out first rise completed bread dough to about ¼” thick and trim it with a pizza cutter to yield rectangular shapes 4” or 10cm wide
- Melt about 20-30g butter
- Brush the melted butter on the rectangles
- Spoon ½ tsp blobs of your desired filling along the length of the rectangular dough leaving a small space between each one – just like making ravioli.
- Fold the half of the rectangle with no filling over the filling.
- Cut between the folds with the pizza cutter and begin to crimp and work on the on the ball to make it as smoothly round as possible, with all the filling encased. The more accurate the better.
- Bake on a baking tray with parchment paper or a silpat liner for about 11 minutes at 450F. They should be browned on the bottom and gently puffed out.
- A note on the filling: if you are using meat, it can go in raw as you will be baking it to about 200 degrees F. The fat drippings from it will infuse into the cooking dough, making the end result wonderfully comforting and filling.
- Don’t be tempted to brush some butter on the top unless you want it obviously greasy.
- Cool and serve.
If you like the look of these, I’d be really interested in what you decide to use as a filling. Please jump to the Replies and share your ideas.