As I'm sure you have figured out by now, I am a huge fan of sweet breads. Cinnamon buns, pull-apart breads... absolute yumminess.
And they're so versitile! You can make them any flavor you want!
So making monkey bread for this month's Sourdough Surprises was super fun. Because the only way to make a sweet bread more fun is to drown it in extra sweetness, right?
The first thing to get started on was the dough. I chose to use this recipe from Sour Salty Bitter Sweet as my inspiration because it looked straightforward and like it didn't require many more steps than yeasted monkey bread.
The dough came together pretty easily...
...but did require a little bit of extra liquid than the recipe called for. I added room-temperature water a tablespoon at a time until the dough came together.
It was a little stiff, still, but I figured a nice long rise would help that out. So I let it sit at room temperature for many, many hours. Like... all day.
Around dinner time, I decided it was time to figure out what flavor I was going to make my monkey bread. Sure, I could go "classic" and just coat the dough balls in cinnamon sugar and pour a regular caramel sauce over the whole thing, but I wanted a little something extra.
I looked around the kitchen and saw... four very ripe bananas!
Vegan roasted banana caramel. Yup. Huge scoop of coconut oil, huge scoop of brown sugar, sliced those bananas, then set 'em in the oven for almost an hour.
And this is what you get.
Pure heaven in a pan.
Which has to cool for a while, making the whole family drool.
After the kids went to bed, I got to work putting everything together. The dough rose beautifully over the course of the day.
Next comes the long part (if you don't count letting the dough sit on the counter all day... or letting the bananas roast for an hour... okay, the longest hands-on part, okay??) - breaking off little balls of that dough, rolling them, and coating them in cinnamon sugar.
I tossed the cinnamon sugar dough into my Bundt pan and, every few balls, scooped out a few of those pieces of roasted banana from the caramel and tossed them in, too.
When I'd used up all the dough, I just poured the caramel sauce over the whole thing and it was all set!
Well, it still needed another rest. This one, overnight in the fridge.
The next morning was (yet another...) snow day, which actually worked out great. I took the pan out of the oven to let it come up to temperature and then baked this up for a delicious mid-morning snack.
Oooey gooey deliciousness, I tell you.
This dough definitely had a very present sourdough tang, but I thought thar went really well with the sweet banana caramel. My favorite way to eat this was warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, but it was also super easy to just reach into the pan and grab a little ball of deliciousness as I was walking by the kitchen.
So what kind of monnkey bread did you make? Link up and share!
Roasted Banana Caramel Sourdough Monkey Bread
(dough only sightly modified from Sour Salty Bitter Sweet)
For the dough:
2 cups refreshed sourdough starter (100% hydration)
3-4 cups all-purpose flour (start with 3 and use more if you need. I did not need more.)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 tablespoons butter, melted (I used melted coconut oil)
1/4 cup sugar
Combine all the dough ingredients (starting with 3 cups of the flour) and mix until combined. I used my KitchenAid mixer with the dough hook attachment. Add more flour as necessary to form a dough that will clean the sides of the bowl and sticks to itself more than it sticks to you. I actually found the dough to be too dry and had to add water, a tablespoon at a time, to reach the right consistency. Be patient and adjust as needed. Continue mixing/kneading in the bowl for a few minutes, just until it’s evenly combined. You can turn it onto a floured surface and knead longer if you like, but it’s not necessary.
Allow the dough to rise for 8-12, or until doubled in size. You can let it rest overnight if you'd like (or in the fridge for a bit longer).
For the roasted banana caramel:
3/4 to 1 cup coconut oil
3/4 to 1 cup brown sugar
4 good sized ripe bananas
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a small baking dish with foil.
Place the coconut oil in the pan, then sprinkle the brown sugar over it. Slice the bananas into 1/2 to 1 inch slices over the coconut oil and brown sugar. Try to spread everything out across the pan so that you don't just have a heap of everything in the middle, but don't stress too much about it - as the coconut oil melts, things will spread out.
Place the pan in the oven and roast for 45 - 60 minutes, until the coconut oil and sugar have carmalized nicely and the bananas are nicely roasted.
Allow to cool.
To assemble the monkey bread:
Prepared roasted banana caramel
approximately 1/2 cup cinnamon sugar
Once the dough has doubled in size and the banana caramel has cooled, gently deflate the dough and spray a Bundt or tube pan with non-stick cooking spray. Take small portions of the dough (about quarter size, definitely no bigger than golf balls), roll them into balls, then roll each ball in the cinnamon sugar. Drop each coated dough ball into the prepared pan. Don't forget to add pieces of the roasted banana as you go, so that they are interspersed throughout the dough balls. Once you have rolled all the dough and added it to the pan, pour the caramel over the whole thing.
Allow this to rise for at least two hours, or overnight in the refrigerator.
When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. If you rested your dough in the refrigerator, be sure to allow the pan to get close to room temperature before baking.
Bake the monkey bread for about 45 minutes until golden brown.
Allow the monkey bread to cook for at least a few minutes before inverting the pan. If you invert it too soon, it won't have a chance to set and it won't stick together or hold its shape. Which isn't really a problem, as it will still taste delicious...
3 days ago