This dish from my restaurant and food truck, Clara B’s Kitchen Table, not only satisfies the sweet tooth with its rich maple glaze, but serves as the perfect, bite-sized snack with its fluffy, light, wonderfully savory rolls and salty bits of bacon.
First up, we’ll make the yeast rolls, which require a baking sheet, a large bowl, plastic wrap and parchment paper. Begin by mixing warm milk and melted butter in a bowl, ensuring that neither of these is too hot — we don’t want to kill the yeast. Add in the granulated sugar, which feeds the yeast, and then sprinkle the yeast evenly on top.
Let this sit for about 7 minutes to bloom. Your yeast should be bubbling or foaming slightly after you let it sit. If it’s not, it may be dead and you’ll need to get new yeast.
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Once the yeast is fully bloomed, add the bread flour, salt, whole egg and egg yolk into the bowl. Mix it all together, incorporating the flour until the dough comes together. I like to do this the old-fashioned way by hand, but feel free to use an electric mixer with a hook.
Dust it with a bit of flour and knead the dough, pushing it away with the heel of your palm and pulling back, forming a ball. Continue kneading the dough until it’s smooth and elastic, but still slightly sticky. This helps build the gluten in the rolls.
Now we’re ready to rest it and let it rise. Oil a large bowl, place the dough in it and cover with plastic wrap. Let it rise at room temperature for 1 hour.
Once the dough has doubled in size, it’s ready to roll. Cut the dough into 12 pieces and roll each piece into a ball, with your palm slightly cupped. You want tension and a little bit of tackiness so that you can have perfectly round dough balls.
Next, oil a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place the dough balls onto the parchment. Cover the balls once more with plastic wrap and rest the balls for 30 minutes, until they’ve doubled in size again. This second rise will help develop a lighter, chewier texture in the dough.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Maple Bacon Glaze
Now it’s time for that silky maple bacon glaze, which only requires one saucepan. Cook the bacon in a saucepan over medium heat. Remove the bacon and reserve 1 Tbsp of fat in the pan, draining the rest. Chop the bacon and set it aside.
Melt the butter in the pan. Next, pour in the brown sugar, maple syrup and milk, stirring together. Once the glaze is bubbling, toss in the chopped bacon, a pinch of salt and black pepper. Your glaze is ready to go!
Baking and plating
Once the rolls have doubled in size, make a small indent at the top of the rolls. If they retain the shape of the indent, they’re ready to bake. Place them in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove them from the oven, glaze and enjoy your Maple Bacon Yeast Rolls!