Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Cheesesteak Buns

We've been trying to be better about meal planning recently. It helps with the food shopping (as in, knowing what we need to buy at the beginning of each week rather than needing to run to the food store every couple of days hoping something will be on sale or speak to me...) and it makes me feel a bit more organized during the day, knowing what I'll need to prepare when.

We are better at planning some weeks than others... this week was a less good week, and, as of yesterday, the "Wednesday" spot on the meal plan was empty. Uh oh.

But a quick look in the freezer yielded instant inspiration. We had a box of cheese-steak meat. You know, that thinly sliced minute steak used to make cheese-steaks.

And I remembered something I'd had on my to-make wish-list for a couple of months.

Remember the December Daring Cooks' Challenge? We made pork buns. Which, upon eating, daddy and I determined would be delicious with a variety of fillings. Such as... cheese-steak. Yup. Wednesday's spot on the meal plan was no longer empty.

During little man's nap, I prepared the dough. Same dough I used for the pork buns. Then once little miss came home from school, I prepared the filling.

Yummy, yummy cheesey steaky goodness.

Filling slightly cooled, dough risen, it was time to make some buns.

I divided the dough into 16 pieces.

I then rolled each piece into a ball, which was subsequently flattened into a disk and filled with that yummy filling.

The dough was then wrapped around the filling to create the buns, and then they were baked. They actually come together pretty quickly, once you get started.

And they come out looking pretty darn good, if I do say so myself.

Yummy deliciousness melting right out of them!

So how were they?

Fantastic. Little miss ate three of them for dinner. Three. As many as I did. As many as daddy did. She ate three. Oh yes, these will be made again.

Baked Cheese-Steak Buns

for the dough:
1 cup milk, scalded
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon oil (I used canola, but the recipe didn't specify)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons dried yeast (I used active dry)
3 cups plain flour (I used all purpose)

Scald the milk, then stir in the sugar, oil and salt. Leave this mixture to cool until it is lukewarm. Once the temperature is right (around 105-110 degrees), add the yeast, then let it sit until the yeast is activated and the mixture becomes frothy, about 10-15 minutes.
Sift the flour into a large bowl.
Add the milk/yeast mixture to the flour. Bring the flour mixture together with your hands, then knead on a lightly floured surface for approximately ten minutes. (I sifted the flour into the bowl of my KitchenAid mixer, then used the dough hook and incorporated the milk/yeast and did the kneading all in the machine, which worked out great.)
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl (I kept it in the KitchenAid's bowl, just gave it a little spray of oil on top) and cover with a damp cloth. Leave it to rise until it doubles in size, 1 - 2 hours, depending on the temperature of your kitchen.

for the filling:
1 medium onion, chopped (I only had very small ones, so I used two)
1 7-ounce box minute-steak
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat olive oil in a large skillet, then add the onions. Cook the onions until starting to caramelize. Break the meat into small pieces and add to the pan. Keep the meat moving, and cook until it is no longer pink. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over the cooked meat, cover the pan and remove it from the heat.

To prepare the buns:
Once the dough has doubled in size, gently deflate it and divide it into 16 portions. Roll each portion into a round ball.
Use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a circle approximately two inches in diameter. Using your hands, gently pull the edges out to enlarge the circle to about three inches in diameter (mine were a little bigger) (this makes the edges thinner than the center, keeping the center of the bun stronger for the filling, and keeping it from cracking).
Place a good sized tablespoon of filling into the middle of the circle of dough.
Gather the edges of the dough and seal the bun.
Place the bun on a parchment covered baking sheet, seam side down.
Preheat your oven to 392 degrees F (200 degrees C, converted exactly, is 392. Close to 400 on your dial, for those of us whose ovens aren't quite that precise...).
Bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown.


1 comment:

  1. These look good!

    I make something similar except with a cheeseburger filling. My children love them, as do my grandchildren.



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