From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...The Silver Fox and I stole away this weekend to spend some time with family before they left for the San Juan Islands. Seattle is a great city, and I hasten to add that we had a wonderful time, but I have come to the conclusion that cats are easier to herd than my progeny. I made the mistake, not just once mind you, of asking, "Where shall we eat?" Six people, six strong wills and six palates, each arguing for their favorite cuisine, led to debates that put filibusters to shame, and, I might add, delayed mealtime by at least an hour whenever the question was asked. I eventually caught on, bit my tongue and had an energy bar while they hashed out the merits of their favorite food. I also came to the conclusion that my crew is not yet ready for democracy, so next time, I'm assuming dictatorial power and will personally be responsible for meal planning and restaurant reservations. Not all was lost, however. One of our more successful forays led us to Pike Place Market for breakfast, and while there, the Silver Fox stumbled on a pastry that his mother used to make for him on Easter Sunday. His family comes from an area in Southern Illinois that was originally settled by German immigrants and this pastry is one they brought with them from the old country. He was thrilled, it was a personal remembrance of things past, and I promised I'd try to recreate them for him once we were home. I made these soft, well-flavored buns for him today, using a recipe I found on the Taste of Home website. I made three changes to the recipe you'll find below. I cut the dough into 2-inch wide strips and I reduced the amount of confectioners' sugar from four to two cups. I also added the zest of one small lemon to the icing. I really like these soft and tender twists and I'll definitely make them again. They are good enough to share, and I thought those of you who enjoy making bread might want to add the twists to your recipe collection. Here is how they are made.
Sour Cream Twists...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Taste of Home magazine
2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup shortening
1/3 cup cold butter
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups sugar, divided use
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup half-and-half cream
1) In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water.
2) In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Cut in shortening and butter until mixture
resembles coarse crumbs. Beat in the egg, egg yolks, sour cream, vanilla and yeast mixture. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
3) Place three ungreased baking sheets in the refrigerator.
4) Sprinkle 1/2 cup sugar over a clean work surface. On sugared surface, roll half of dough into a 12 x 8-inches rectangle (refrigerate remaining dough until ready to use). Sprinkle rectangle with 4 teaspoons sugar. Fold dough into thirds. Give dough a quarter turn and repeat rolling, sugaring and folding two more times. Roll into a 12 x 8-inche rectangle. Cut into twelve 1-inch wide strips. Twist strips. Place on chilled baking sheets. Repeat with remaining sugar and dough.
5) Bake at 375 degrees F. for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Immediately remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
6) For icing, combine confectioners' sugar and cream. Dip twists into icing or drizzle icing over twists. Yield: 2 dozen twists.
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