#31 – Bake bread from scratch

My mom is the best baker in the world. I know you think your mom might know how to bake your favorite goodies, but my mom’s are better.

Growing up, my mom was not the person who sat and watched TV or movies, read books, or crocheted. She never liked to sit still. For her, when she wasn’t working, she was gardening, golfing, or baking some delicious desserts.

But only today do I realize why she only made her amazing caramel rolls a few times a year.

For one of my 40 in 40, I wanted to make bread from scratch, so I thought I’d tackle her caramel rolls. I made them with her before (or, really, watched her make them), but I don’t know if I wasn’t paying enough attention or just never realized, but it is a whole-day project.

First you make the dough, which takes a longer than one would think after boiling milk and water, letting it cool, adding the yeast, etc. I forgot to add the eggs, but my mom assured me it would be okay, so I pushed on.

After you finish the dough, it has to rise for at least an hour. As it’s rising you make the caramel and put it in the cake pans, but by the time the dough rises you have to punch it and let it rise for at least another hour. When it’s done rising again, then you roll it out, cut up the rolls, put them in the pans with caramel, and let it rise for at least another hour.

After hours of prep and rising, finally you’re ready to bake the rolls, which only takes 20 minutes. After all that, 20 minutes and they’re done. It’s kind of anticlimactic at that point because it’s been almost SIX HOURS.

My mom’s look better and are all exactly the same, perfect size, but these taste pretty good. I might not have cooked the caramel enough because every once in awhile it tastes a little sugary, but I’m calling this a success.

And I’m going to take my mom’s lead on this one and leave a project like this for special occasions. She would make these a few times a year, sometimes more if we begged, but I thinking I’ll only do this again once every few years, if that. 🙂

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