Bananensoes

So here I am, boasting how easy it was to make the Bossche bollen, how yummie they were and did I say how easy it was to make them, when somebody said: you should make those with banana pudding inside!
I'll be darned! We have something called bananensoes in Holland which is similar to a Bossche bol but with, yeah you guessed it, bananas. Check this out!

In this case I didn't add real bananas to the whipped cream because I had no intention to cutting the bol open, quite honestly for fear that the whole thing would collapse. But usually the bananensoes is an elongated éclair-esque pastry, with whipped cream and slices of fresh banana in the middle, topped with a white chocolate glaze colored yellow with food coloring and finished with brown chocolate drizzle (I'm sure there is a technical term for this but it eludes me this second).

Instead of splitting up the dough into two or four, I just made one whopping big soes. Just because.

Bananensoes
1/3 cup of flour
1/3 cup of water
2 tablespoons of butter
1 egg, beaten
pinch of salt

1/2 cup of white chocolate chips
1 tablespoon of water
1 drop of yellow food coloring

1/2 cup of whipping cream
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 tablespoon of banana cream pudding mix

1/4 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon of water

Heat the water and the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then take off the stove. Add the flour and stir until it all comes together in a ball. Throw in the pinch of salt, stir in the egg and continue to stir until the dough has absorbed all the egg and is a homogenous whole.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, divide the dough in four (for smaller bollen) or in two (for decent sized ones) and place it on top of the parchment. Bake in an 375F degree oven for about 20-25 minutes or until puffy and golden. Cool on a rack.

In the meantime, beat the whipping cream, the sugar and the banana pudding mix until it's stiff. Fill a pastry bag with small tip and poke through the bottom of the soes. Fill with whipped cream. Heat the chocolate chips and the tablespoon of water in the microwave (30 seconds on medium), stir until the chocolate has melted and the sauce has come together. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, add the food coloring, then carefully take the cream-filled bananensoes and dip, head first, into the chocolate. If you don't want to get your hands dirty, just set the soes on a rack and slowly pour the chocolate over the top, one spoonful at a time. Prepare the dark chocolate sauce the same way and drizzle over the bananensoes.

Cool in the fridge for about 20 minutes or until the chocolate is solid and everything has had a chance to firm up a bit.


Bossche Bollen

Have you ever started a project with certain fear and trepidation? Did you ever think that perhaps it was a feat too big to tackle? Well, I sure have. And one of those doubt-inspiring points was this traditional Dutch pastry called Bossche Bollen. I'm not sure why but somehow I thought that making the dough, filling it with whipped cream and then dipping it in chocolate was going to be a hellish task. Maybe because the pastry looks kind of complicated to the untrained eye, or maybe because I still am slightly uncomfortable with the pastry bag and tip. I much prefer a big spoon!

Anyway, enough talk. This pastry is so easy to make, it's not even funny. Check these bollen out. They're like chocolate eclairs but bigger, fluffier, with better chocolate and much more cream. These Bossche beauties have made the city of 's Hertogenbosch famous (or is it the other way around?) and are the number one pastry that is served with fork and knife and a handful of napkins. Because there is no way, just like with the tompouce, that you will not end up with whipped cream on your lap, on your tie or blouse and on your fingers. And that is just the charm of these bollen.

Bossche Bollen
1/3 cup of flour
1/3 cup of water
2 tablespoons of butter
1 egg, beaten
pinch of salt
1/2 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon of water
1/2 cup of whipping cream
2 tablespoons of sugar

Heat the water and the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then take off the stove. Add the flour and stir until it all comes together in a ball. Throw in the pinch of salt, stir in the egg and continue to stir until the dough has absorbed all the egg and is a homogenous whole.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, divide the dough in four (for smaller bollen) or in two (for decent sized ones) and place it on top of the parchment. Bake in an 375F degree oven for about 20-25 minutes or until puffy and golden. Cool on a rack.

In the meantime, beat the whipping cream and the sugar until it's stiff. Fill a pastry bag with small tip and poke through the bottom of the bol. Fill with whipped cream. Heat the chocolate chips and the tablespoon of water in the microwave (30 seconds on medium), stir until the chocolate has melted and the sauce has come together. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, then carefully take the cream-filled Bossche bol and dip, head first, into the chocolate. If you don't want to get your hands dirty, just set the bollen on a rack and slowly pour the chocolate over the top, one spoonful at a time.

Cool in the fridge for about 20 minutes or until the chocolate is solid and everything has had a chance to firm up a bit. Enjoy with a nice cup of coffee and some good company. And keep those napkins handy!



And this is what happens when you turn your back for a moment
and somebody else is with you in the kitchen.......Needless to say the Bossche bol
is messy enough to easily identify the culprit, although I wasn't sure if the whipped cream on their chin or the cheesy grin on their face gave them away. Both, I guess!

Tijgerbollen

Tiger rolls, tiger bread, or Dutch crunch are a typical and traditional Dutch bread. When I grew up, it would mostly appear as a luxury bread on weekends, or during special holiday breakfasts or brunches, such as Easter or Christmas. I am not sure why it's called tiger bread, although I assume because it has a rather exotic looking crust, but it could just as well have been called giraffe bread or leopard bread. But tiger bread it is, so that's what we'll call it!  The unique crust is achieved by spreading a rice flour and yeast paste on the bread dough. As the bread rises, the crust splits into separate crunchy little morsels. Eat these rolls warm out of the oven or re-heated: the crust will have a pleasant crunch and the taste will be optimal. For a richer dough, you can use milk instead of water. 

© Maas en Scheldebode 14 June 1901 pg.8

The earliest advertisement that I was able to find stems from 1901, where master baker Wessels from 
Sommelsdijk (Zuid-Holland) announces the availability of "tijgerbrood" daily, but no information whatsoever as to where it came from, who invented it, or how it came about. One source online suggests that it must have come from Asia, seeing as how rice flour was not used in the Netherlands. But Aaltje's cookbook from 1845 includes several recipes with rice, and rice flour, so it wasn't all that uncommon. It was however considered a bread in its own category, as many baking competitions and baker certifications had a separate category for tiger bread. 

Oh well. I will keep digging to see if I can figure it out, but in the meantime, let's bake! 


For the dough
4 cups all-purpose flour (550 gr.)
1 1/2 cup warm water (355 ml)
2 teaspoons active dry yeast (8 gr.)
1 teaspoon kosher salt (8 gr.)
1 teaspoon sugar (6 gr.)
1 tablespoon butter, melted (15 gr.)

For the crust paste
3/4 cup rice flour (100 gr.)
1/2 cup warm water (118 ml)
1 tablespoon active dry yeast (9 gr.)
1 tablespoon sugar (15 gr.)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil (15 gr.)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (1 gr.)

For the dough, mix the flour, salt, yeast and sugar. Add the warm water and knead until a soft dough. Add in the tablespoon of melted butter, knead together. Let rise for an hour, or until doubled, punch down and divide into equally sized rolls ( I measure mine out at approx. 3.5 oz/100 grams each)

For the crust, mix flour with water, yeast and the sugar. Stir, then add the salt and the oil. Let sit for about fifteen minutes (get a cup big enough because it will rise extensively!). Brush the rolls with the mixture, applying a layer of paste on the top and sides of the rolls. (You will not use up all the paste, somewhere up to 3/4 of the mixture - just don't spread it on too thick)

Proof the rolls for another ten minutes, then bake in a 375F oven for about 20-22 minutes or until golden brown. Best eaten the same day.




Makes nine rolls.