Contributed by: NAPSA
Take Your Taste Buds Abroad (NAPSA) - For a number of home chefs, cooking has gone global. Kolaches, for example, are an increasingly popular and easy way to make a delicious food from across the Atlantic.
If kolaches (pronounced ko-LOSH-e) were invented in America, they would most likely be called puffs. The tasty treats, however, were invented as wedding pastries in Czechoslovakia and have held their name for hundreds of years.
Americans have developed a taste for kolaches-as evidenced by the annual Kolache Festivals in Burleson County, Texas. The festival (held every September) includes a bake show which draws entries from across Texas.
Generally, the kolache is considered a dessert. The versatility of kolache, however, is demonstrated by the Fleischmann's Yeast Test Kitchens with their recipe for Ham and Cheese Kolache.
A Ham and Cheese Kolache is a soft, rounded, Parmesan-laced roll, baked golden brown and topped with pieces of hearty ham anchored in melted cheese and Dijon mustard. This recipe has a full flavor and can be a meal unto itself.
In a large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, cheese, sugar, undissolved yeast, and salt. Heat water and butter until very warm (120û to 130ûF). Gradually add to flour mixture. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add egg and 1 cup flour; beat 2 minutes at high speed. Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
Divide dough into 16 equal pieces; shape each into a ball. Cover; let rest 15 minutes. Place balls on greased baking sheets 2 inches apart. Make a deep and wide indentation on each ball by pushing outward toward edge, leaving 1/2-inch ridge around outside. Fill with Ham and Cheese filling. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Brush surface of dough with Egg Glaze.
Bake at 375ûF for 15 minutes or until done. Remove from sheets; serve warm. Refrigerate leftovers.
Ham and Cheese Filling: In a bowl, combine 1 cup diced ham, 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, and 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard. Stir to blend well. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Egg Glaze: In a small bowl, combine 1 egg white and 1 tablespoon water. Beat lightly to blend.
When you use two baking sheets or pans in the same oven, be sure to stagger them. Heat rises and stacking one pan directly above another causes the bottom pan to bake faster than the top. Bakers should also rotate the sheets (top to bottom and bottom to top) and turn the sheets 180 degrees (back to front) halfway through baking.
Serving Size: Makes 16 Kolaches
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