This week: we bake Peeta Mellark's Cheese Buns from The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins.
AND we invite YOU to bake along with us.
Share what you make by tagging us with #DPPLBakes, send us your favorite recipes, or just enjoy reading our entries.
"From the bag I pull two fresh buns with a layer of cheese baked into the top. We always seem to have a supply of these since Peeta found out they were my favorite."
"Staying quietly in bed is harder after that. I want to be doing something, finding out more about District 13 or helping in the cause to bring down the Capitol. Instead I sit around stuffing myself with cheese buns and watching Peeta sketch."
Pretty much the only good thing to happen to Katniss when she goes to the Capitol to participate in the Hunger Games is her getting to experience all the decadent food that they have to offer. Yet, as fans of the series know, she always goes back to the boy with the bread. (Sorry Gale)
Something about the simplicity and the hominess of bread really puts it in a category of its own.
As many quarantining people have been discovering, yeast is not as scary as it seems and making your own bread (or rolls) comes with an extra level of pride that you just can't buy from the store.
For these soft and fluffy cheese buns, I used the easy recipe provided at Yammie's Noshery (paraphrased below.)
1 cup warm water
2 tablespoons yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 cup olive oil
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
At least 8 oz. of cheese
1. Mix together the yeast and water and let it sit for a couple minutes. Use this time to realize that you, for some reason, don't own the Hunger Games series so you can't take a cute Instagram of your cheese buns resting on the books.
2. Add the sugar, garlic powder, melted butter, and oil.
3. Add flour a little at a time, mixing in your stand mixer with a dough hook.
4. Frantically throw in the salt that you forgot to add and defeatedly watch it spray all over your kitchen.
5. Knead for 10 minutes.
6. Let the dough rise in a greased bowl covered with a damp cloth for about 30 minutes.
7. Preheat the oven to 375º.
8. Divide the dough into about 20ish pieces. Resign yourself to buns of different sizes.
9. Put about a 3/4 inch chunk of cheese in each one and make sure you pinch all the edges back up tightly. Put the pinched side down on a greased baking sheet. (Eat any leftover cheese chunks.)
10. Sprinkle the buns with more shredded cheese from the random bag of cheese you found in the back of your fridge and is probably still good.
11. Bake at 375ºF for about 11-15 minutes until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.
12. Brush with melted butter and serve warm. Remind all your friends and family that, unfortunately, we are in the middle of a Pandemic and they cannot come over to eat them, no matter how delicious they look.
13. Eat them all yourself.
Although I'm no Peeta Mellark, I was very pleased with how they turned out!
Sure, I may never have the cupcake-decorating skills to perform high-level camouflage while I bleed out under a pile of leaves, but the cheesy goodness of these buns more than makes up for it.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of The Great DPPL Bake-Along.
Check back in two weeks for another delicious installment!