Thursday, March 20, 2008

Recipe: Latvian Bacon Rolls (or Piragi No.1)

Pastry ½ cup warm water
2 tsps. sugar
2 envelopes dry yeast
2 cups whole milk, scalded
½ cup oil
2 Tbsps. sugar
2 tsps. salt
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 sour cream
About six cups of all-purpose flour
Bacon Filling
2 lbs. lean bacon, diced very fine 
1 medium onion, chopped very fine
ground pepper and salt to taste, 
but mixture should not be too bland
In a hot pan, stir-fry mixture quickly
for 5 minutes, but do not let too much
fat separate. Cool quickly in the fridge.
Prepare yeast: in a small bowl, mix sugar with water; sprinkle yeast on top; set aside in a warm place for 10 minutes. Yeast should bubble up to double the size. 
Meanwhile, scald the milk and put in a large mixing bowl. Add salt, sugar, oil, and stir. Mix eggs with sour cream, separately. When milk is cooled to lukewarm, add egg mixture; add yeast mixture and 2 cups of the flour. Beat thoroughly with wooden spoon spoon or electric mixer. Add another cup of flour and continue beating.
Remove beaters and continue mixing with a spoon or dough-hook. Add almost all of the rest of the flour. The dough will be quite stiff, but still sticky. When the dough begins to leave the sides of the bowl, turn it out onto a lightly floured pastry board. Work enough flour into the dough so that it can be handled without sticking to the hands or the board. Knead dough with the heels of your hands for about 5-10 minutes, slapping the dough forcibly down on the board a few times.
Place ball into a greased bowl; grease the top of the dough and cover with a plastic sheet. Place in a warm spot to rise, about 1-1 ½ hours, or until doubled.
Punch dough down, and take half out onto a floured board. Roll into a long strand, about 20”. With a knife, cut into even pieces, about 1”. (Repeat with the other half of the dough.) With your hands, roll and flatten each piece into a patty- large enough to put 1tsp. of filling in the middle. Fold edges up and pinch closely together. Place rolls on a greased cookie sheet with the pinched sides under. Bend rolls slightly into a crescent shape (optional). Before putting into the oven, brush tops with slightly beaten egg and stab with a fork to release steam. Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for about 12-15 minutes until golden to light brown.
Makes about 80.

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