Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Pumpkin Monkey Bread

What else could we serve to compliment our pumpkin beer and waffles?  Why, monkey bread of course!  Ross came across this recipe while we were brainstorming about what types of food to serve with the pumpkin ale debut and requested I made it.  This is the second monkey bread he has requested.  Is that a hint?

As with the waffles, I used fresh pumpkin puree; but I'm sure canned pumpkin would work as well.

adapted from Tracey's recipe at Sugarcrafter

Makes one loaf

The Ingredients:
For the bread dough
3 1/4 cups flour, plus extra for kneading
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup warm milk (105° - 115° F)
1/4 cup warm water (105° - 115° F)
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (about 1 pkg)

for the coating:
1 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 stick butter, melted

for the glaze:
2/3 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1-2 tsp milk

The Process:
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and spices.

In another large bowl, whisk together the milk, water, pumpkin, melted butter, sugar, and yeast.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add in the wet ingredients. Using a wooden spoon, gently stir until the dough comes together. Turn out on to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10-15 minutes. Form the dough into a ball and set inside a clean bowl lightly sprayed with cooking spray.  Cover with a clean towel and set in a warm spot to rise.  Allow to double in size, about one hour.

In a small bowl mix together the cinnamon and sugar, and melt the butter for the coating. Spray a bundt pan with cooking spray. Once the dough has risen, shape the ball into a large rectangle. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into roughly equal-sized pieces and roll each piece into a ball, roughly 1-inch to 1 1/2 inch in diameter.  They needn't be the uniform, but aim to have between 35 and 45 balls.

Dip each ball of dough into the melted butter and then gently roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Layer the coated dough balls in the bundt pan as you go.

Once you’ve coated and layered all of the dough balls, cover the bundt pan and let the dough rise for another hour.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Bake the bread until golden brown, 30-35 minutes. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before turning out on to a platter.

While the bread cools make the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar and maple syrup. Add milk one tsp and a time until you achieve the desired consistency.  Drizzle over the bread while it’s still warm.

The Review:
What's not to like about monkey bread?  Especially the sweet varities?  It is warm and spicy.  It makes your kitchen smell devinine.  It's name is fun to say.  You eat it with your fingers.  And it make a wonderful breakfast the next morning.  No wonder Ross keeps requesting these yeasty gems!

I had more little balls of dough than the original recipe yielded (she managed about 40).  I suspect this was due to smaller cuts on my part.  As a result I ran out of butter and cinnamon sugar to roll the dough balls in pretty quickly and needed to prep more. 

Overall a marvelous bread.  It makes me wonder how pumpkin cinnamon rolls would go over...

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