Are too big!
Cheap humour but it amused me... and it seemed a more interesting title than The Great Bloggers Bake Off part two! And dampfnudel has now pretty much become my word of the week... because it's funny! (or is that just me?)
Given the disppointing results of my attempt at the chocolate Barmbrack... (in my defense I am pretty sure the recipe was way out on its ratio of wet to dry ingredients and even though I thought it was pretty revolting Stewart has been eating it with relish)... I decided to bite the bullet and give the technical challenge a go after all! I used Paul Hollywood's recipe for Dampfnudel and followed it pretty much to letter, only substituting semi skimmed milk for full fat because that was what I had. It was pretty straightforward but quite a lot of faffing about. And it took me way longer than the two hours alloted. If you add up all the resting plus cooking times it adds up to two hours and five minutes so how the contestants were meant to weigh ingredients and do all the other bits of prep I will never know. Hats off to each of them for actually getting something made at all. No wonder their dampfnudeln were nearly all under cooked!
I made the plum sauce and vanilla custard too!
The method of steaming bread in a pan is entirely new to me so I wasn't sure what to expect. Despite using my biggest pan they cooked up into the the most enormous dumplings, all tightly squished together. With the lid all steamed up it was difficult to see if they were cooked but I gave them the full 30 minutes after which they still looked very pale. And even more difficult to see if they were evenly browned underneath. I was just beginning to get a whiff of burning as I whipped them off the heat.
Now dear reader... should you wish to try these at home, do not be fooled by the instruction "Carefully lift out the dumplings using a slotted spoon". You will need a knife... a very big sturdy strong knife... or possible even a chisel. And the result as you can see above was not little round even dumplings but big fluffy uneven pillows of dough, that were stuck together with bases that were probably just a little on the wrong side of golden and caramelised!
And as for my pan... a good soak is required! Do you think the Bake Off contestants have to do their own washing up?
Anyway... I know what you are wondering... what did they taste like? Well, surprisingly good! Despite their silly name and rather pale and insipid appearance, they were light and rather delicious. Not unlike a brioche or an iced bun in fact.
The plum sauce and custard were tasty additions but I have also eaten one cut in half and buttered and I almost preferred that. So I may not have got points for twelve identical little round buns... but they were cooked and tasted good.
And I'm glad I tried the technical challenge this week, because at the start of Bake Off I thought I would challenge myself to do the technical challenge every week as part of my "Sixty by Sixty". This was the project I set myself last year to do sixty new or different things before my sixtieth birthday next year. As many of the things on my list involved walking I was rather thrown off track when I broke my ankle and I cast the project aside. But I've taken it up again with gusto and have lots of ideas in the pipeline (many involving cake)... although still a very long way off sixty! And there are several weeks and plenty more technical challenges to complete before I can add this to my list!