Friday, September 14, 2012

Monkey Bread

The first time I made monkey bread was in a summer school cooking class.  Mr. I. introduced the recipe to the students and we made the easy version of monkey bread.  We used canned biscuit dough and cut each piece of dough into four pieces and rolled them into balls.  Then, we dipped the dough balls in butter and cinnamon sugar.  This was such a fun recipe.  My family enjoyed what I brought home so much that we made monkey bread several times at home.

While surfing the web, looking at recipes, I found this monkey bread recipe that starts from scratch.  I didn't actually make the monkey bread until a year later.  The recipe was really simple and the bread was very soft and fluffy. It also wasn't too sweet. (I didn't make a glaze.  Actually, I kind of forgot about...but the bread was sweet enough already so it didn't matter.)  This is definitely a must make recipe.  Monkey bread is like the best part of cinnamon rolls - the gooey, yummy centers.

Monkey Bread
Recipe from the Brown Eyed Baker, very slightly adapted.



2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
1 cup milk, warm (I microwaved it for around 20-30 seconds)
1/3 cup water, warm (I used some hot water and mixed it with some lukewarm water)
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 package instant yeast
3¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
2 teaspoons salt
Brown Sugar Coating:
1 cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), melted (melt 4 tbsp at first and melt more when you need it, I had lots of butter left over.)
Glaze: (I omitted this.)
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons milk

Grease your pan with either butter or spray it with Pam, like I did.
In the original recipe it said to make the dough using a mixer, but I didn't have a standing mixer.  What I did was mix together the milk, water, melted butter, sugar and yeast in a medium sized bowl.  Then mix the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl.  Add the milk mixture into the large bowl and mix with a wooden spoon.  When the dough starts forming, you can start kneading with your hands so it isn't as messy.  Continue kneading the dough until it is smooth.  This might take 10 minutes or more.  Then take the dough out and knead it on a floured counter and coat your large bowl with Pam and then put the dough back in and cover the bowl.  Let it rise for around one hour, or until it doubles in size.

Mix the sugar and cinnamon together and melt the butter in a separate bowl
After the dough has risen, take it out of the bowl and roll it into a 8x8 inch square and cut it into 64 pieces.

Roll the pieces and dip into butter and then sugar.  Then stagger the pieces in the already greased bundt pan.  Make sure that the dough in the bundt pan does not reach the top, let it fill up to 2/3 of the pan.  That way when the bread is expanding, it won't overflow the pan.  With the extra pieces, feel free to make mini monkey bread cupcakes.  Cover the bundt pan and let the bread rise again for around another hour.

Bake in the oven at 350*F for around 30-35 minutes.  When the top of the bread is golden brown, maybe even a little darker, it is done.  Before cooling it on the rack, cool it in the pan for 5 minutes.  Then glaze it afterward... make the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar an milk.

Wow!  After typing this whole thing, I found out there was a version for hand kneaded monkey bread on the bottom....oh well.

Here's the dough after it has doubled in size.


Roll the dough out and then cut it into 64 pieces.


Dip the balls into butter and then the sugar mixture.

Set the balls into the bundt pan or whatever pan you want to use.  You can also put them into muffic cups.




Let the bread rise once again.

Then bake...


I hope you enjoy it!  It was sweet enough without the glaze.  If you want to make it prettier or even sweeter, just add the glaze. :)

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