- 6 g instant yeast
- 65 mL milk (no more than 110F)
- 135 g Flour (Strong Bread)
- 80 g Flour (Plain)
- 1/4 t salt
- 13 g Sugar (Icing)
- 25 g honey
- 16 g tahini (I used sesame oil)
- zest of 1/4 orange
- 25 g unsalted butter (room temperature)
Combine the yeast and milk in a measuring cup and allow the yeast to proof for a bit.
Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl. The quantity isn't quite enough to use a stand mixer, so I did all of this by hand.
Mix the honey and tahini together in another bowl, or you can just measure it into the same cup as the yeast and milk. I do so hate doing dishes, and you have to mix the two things together anyway. Add that to the dry ingredients. Mix until you form a dough - mine was a little dry at this point.
Add the zest, butter, and 60 mL of water (I made sure this was lukewarm too, just for the yeast). Mix until everything comes together, then knead until the dough is smooth and elastic. I added just another couple spoonfuls of flour to this so that I could knead it by hand. If you're using a fancy schmancy hand mixer with a dough hook attachment, you won't need to do this. By hand though, the dough is a bit sticky.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator. Allow it to chill for at least an hour, or overnight. Or for a couple days because you spend too much time at work. You know, however it fits into your schedule.
Preheat the oven to 35o degrees F. Halve the dough and place one half back in the refrigerator. Knead the other half until it is smooth, then roll out until it is about 1/4" thick. With a sharp knife, eyeball strips that are about 1/4" wide and 6" long. Or you can get out a ruler. Or do what I did, and just make strips 1/4" wide and haphazard lengths depending on how rectangular my dough was at the time.
Transfer these to a parchment paper lined baking sheet (if you don't use parchment, grease the sheet so they don't stick). Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes, or until they're nice and brown. Golden brown means they'll be crispy, as they should be - this took closer to 18-20 minutes for mine. Keep an eye on them though, because they go from crispy brown to crispy black in no time flat. Crispy black is not what you're going for, if you were wondering.
Transfer to a rack to cool, then decorate as you'd like. Melt some chocolate and spoon it over, then sprinkle whatever you'd like all over them. Or just snack on the crispy things by themselves, I promise I won't tell. If you won't.
SJ Note 19 Oct 2009: Made this for Chris for our anniversary. They're really good! I used sesame oil, because I never did pick up tahini, and besides it's apparently usually made with peanut oil, which would be no good for Chris. I did try grinding sesame seeds, but that didn't work out so well. The sesame oil worked really well! I also had to use orange extract instead of orange zest, as I hadn't realized I'd need an orange for this. It worked fine.
I did scald the milk first and let it cool to < 110F before adding the yeast: with such a small quantity of milk, that didn't take long. Using the dough hooks as suggested didn't work for me, so I just kneaded it by hand. Might try rolling out the next batch, instead of cutting.