Adventures in feeding, parenting and generally managing a household of five boys

Adventures in feeding, parenting and generally managing a household of five boys

Monday, December 27, 2010

Memories and Monkey Bread

My maternal grandmother, Mar, was a baker extraordinaire.  She could bake anything and everything, and did it all from scratch.  I wish I could say that I inherited her baking skills, but alas, no.  That is probably a good thing in this family of testosterone, where dessert often consists of Cheetos and Slim Jims (by choice).  It is not uncommon for me to send in half of a birthday cake with Mark to work to avoid him finding me in a sugar coma when he returns home.  They just won't eat it.  I don't get it.

Mar's piece de resistance was a baked good referred to as a "Crown".  It was labor intensive, requiring dough made from scratch.  After rising, she would then form the dough into balls, coated in cinnamon sugar, with nuts and raisins, and placed in a Bundt pan.  It would then be left over night to rise again, and baked in the morning.  We would have it on special occasions, such as Christmas or Easter morning, or if we begged hard enough.  Various family members have attempted to duplicate her efforts, but it has just not ever been the same. 

A good fake-out is monkey bread.  Surprisingly, several of my boys requested it for Christmas morning, as a "tradition".  I had recently received a 2011 calendar from Pillsbury with recipes in it, including one for "Mini Caramel Pull-Apart Rolls". . . individual monkey breads.  Ideal!

Too cute!

We had them for breakfast on Christmas morning to rave reviews.  Thankfully, the boys had never had Crown before, so they did not know what they were missing.  My grandmother would be rolling over in her grave to know that I used refrigerated biscuits.  But, maybe she would just be happy that I was baking at all!

The recipe:

Mini Caramel Pull-Apart Rolls (General Mills)
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 cans (7.5 oz each) refrigerated biscuits
  1. Grease or spray 12 regular-size muffin cups. Mix butter and brown sugar; spoon 1 tablespoon mixture into each muffin cup.
  2. Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon in 1-gallon bag. Separate dough into 20 biscuits; cut each in 6 pieces.  Shake pieces in bag to coat.  Place 10 pieces in each muffin cup.
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 1 minute; turn upside down.  Serve warm.
Try not to burn your mouth!  Enjoy!

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