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Soft, earthy and delicious dinner rolls. If you’ve never eaten stinging nettles, these may be just the thing to win you over to the green side. No nettles? There’s always spinach.
Read the whole recipe through once before you begin.
For the dough:
Combine the flours, yeast, salt, honey and butter in a large bowl, cutting in the butter until it’s in small lumps. Set aside.
Lightly whisk the egg into the milk and add it into the dry ingredients. Mix with your hands until it forms a rough ball, then remove it to a lightly-floured counter, and knead until the dough is soft, supple and tacky but not sticky, about 6-8 minutes. (You may need to add a little flour to get the right dough texture. It depends on the humidity in the air.)
Pour 1 teaspoon of cooking oil into the clean/dry bowl, roll the dough in the bowl to coat it in oil, cover the bowl with a plate or towel and set in a warm place to rise for 1½ to 2 hours, or until the dough is doubled in size.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and roll into a rectangle depending on the size of bun that you want: 12”x12” for 8 large buns (breakfast bun/sandwich size); 8”x20” for 16 medium-sized buns (dinner roll size); or 6”x24” for 24 small buns (party size).
Brush the rectangle of dough with melted butter, then spread the nettles evenly on top (see below Notes section for instructions about the nettles). Follow with the cheese, lemon zest and pine nuts, then press the toppings firmly into the dough with the palm of your hand.
Roll the dough up into a log, using a bench scraper or spatula to un-stick the dough when necessary. Pinch the bottom seam to seal, then rock it, seam side down, to even everything out.
Flour a knife or bench scraper to cut the log into half, then cut each half into quarters. Continue to cut each piece in half until you have the desired number of buns (as detailed above). Gently transfer the slices to a parchment-lined or buttered pan, cover the pan, and set in a warm place to rise until doubled, about 1-1½ hours.
Set the rack in the middle position and preheat the oven to 350°F.
Dab the remaining melted butter onto the proofed rolls with a pastry brush, then bake until light golden, 10-18 minutes, depending on their size.
When done, remove from oven and cool buns on a rack. Serve warm with butter, or slice for sandwiches.
For nettle foraging tips, watch this episode of Outlander Kitchen’s Outdoor Pantry (on the attached blog link)! Always wear gloves when handling nettles, until they are blanched and cooled.
You will need 5 or 6 big (gloved) handfuls of nettles for this recipe. Use the top 2-3 sets of leaves only, and wash well in tepid water with a splash of vinegar to kill any little bugs.
Blanch the nettles (or spinach) in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes. Use tongs or a slotted spoon to remove the nettles from the boiling water, then shock the nettles in a bowl filled with ice water. This will cool them immediately and stay the bright green colour.
Remove nettles from the water and wring the nettles in a clean dish towel to squeeze out as much water as you can. Chop them finely and proceed with the recipe.
Frozen chopped spinach is a great substitute if you can’t get your (gloved) hands on nettles. It also has to be wrung out, once thawed, to remove excess water.
If pine nuts are unavailable, or prohibitively expensive, use slivered almonds instead.
I also tried cooking these in muffin tins, but we preferred the soft sides of the buns cooked together in a pan.
This Low Fat Banana, Date & Nut Bread may be low on fat, but it’s not low on flavor! It’s perfect to enjoy with that morning tea or coffee. This recipe makes two loaves, one to eat now, and one to put in the freezer to enjoy later.
Better than Starbucks makes!
Nancy is the Coupon Clipping Cook, which means she not only has an astounding number of recipes to share with us (her TK recipe box is busting at the seams!) but she's also got loads of money-saving tips in her blog (she worked at a grocery store for a number of years, so she knows her stuff). She has some pretty amazing creations, like Roasted Garlic Potato Soup and Nutty Coconut Chicken. Go check them out!
Heather is a Texas native and the blogger behind Heather's Dish. She's mom to Weston, wife to Nate, and they live in Little Rock, Arkansas with their two "stubborn and saucy" dogs Bunker and Keira. In her blog, she shares her photographs, random musings (serious and silly alike), and all kinds of scrumptious recipes---and not just evil variations of her favorite mac and cheese. Her enviable TK recipe box is a testament to that. Go see for yourself!