Monday, September 7, 2009

No Beer OR Rocks in These

We had homemade bierocks for supper tonight. That's pronounced "beer-rocks", and no, there isn't a drop of beer in them, nor are they made with rocks. (However, if your bread-making skills are like mine, they could be mistaken for rocks. Or doorstops.)

That being said, I cheat and make my bierocks with the Rhodes frozen bread dough. You can also use generic frozen bread dough (I buy the rolls and thaw them out).

If you've never had a homemade bierock, you're in for a treat. I'm not sure, but I think their origin is German. What was surprising to me is that a lot of people outside of Kansas have never even heard of bierocks. If you've ever gone to a craft fair in Kansas, chances are homemade bierocks were on the menu. And they usually sell out pretty fast.

That's a picture of my homemade bierocks. There are several ways you can make them, but most all of them consist of browned, seasoned ground beef, shredded cabbage, and onions. For extra flavor, I like to add a few strips of Swiss cheese to them before pinching them shut.

If you want to make homemade bierocks, it's easy. Just use any good homemade bread dough recipe (like I said, I cheat and use the frozen bread dough). Let your dough raise once in a greased pan and then grab a handful of it and roll or push it out flat with your hands. You can make your flattened shape either round or rectangular, whatever is easiest for you. Spoon on a few tablespoons of the filling onto the dough, add a few strips of Swiss cheese, and then pinch shut. I can usually make about 13 or 14 bierocks out of a package of bread dough. But I make mine big. Really big. You can probably get 20 or so bierocks if you make them smaller.

Here's what I do to make the filling: brown some ground beef (or ground turkey) and onion in a pan. When the ground beef is about halfway browned, add some shredded cabbage. Cook till done and then drain. Season with salt and pepper. That's it for the filling. Pretty simple, right?

Notice I'm not measuring here with my fancy-schmancy recipe. I say "some". Well, if you're a mom, "some" is whatever you need to feed your family of ____. For our family of six, I use about a package of ground beef (or one small tube) and maybe 1/2 of a head of cabbage. Like any good German cook, I rarely measure anything anymore.

Oh, back to the recipe. Once you have pinched your dough shut, placed these little guys on a greased cookie sheet. I like to brush mine with beaten egg for a shiny brown finish. Then, I let them raise again in a nice warm place. Maybe let them raise for another 20 minutes or so. Then I bake them in a 350 oven for about 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve these as your main dish, with maybe some fruit, salad, or vegetable on the side. They are very filling! They also reheat easily and are very portable since you just eat them with your hands.

Prepare to fall in love with these. They are so tasty, especially fresh and piping hot out of the oven! I would imagine you could fill these with anything you like....ham, eggs, potatoes, etc. But we just use the regular bierock filling for now. It's hard to go wrong with a good thing.