This bread, along with the Empanadas and Cuernitos variations that follow, is made from the same basic pan dulce dough called fino.
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar, divided
1 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1 (1/4-ounce) envelope active dry yeast
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (15 1/4-ounce) can pineapple tidbits
2 tablespoons cornstarch
How to Make It
Stir together flour, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in bowl of a heavy-duty electric stand mixer. Add yeast and next 3 ingredients; beat at low speed with mixer, using dough hook attachment, 1 minute. Increase speed to medium, and beat 1 more minute. Cover dough with wax paper, and let stand 30 minutes.
Stir together pineapple, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a saucepan over medium heat; simmer 1 minute.
Process pineapple mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Return to pan, reserving 2 tablespoons.
Stir together reserved 2 tablespoons pineapple mixture and cornstarch in a small bowl. Whisk cornstarch mixture into pineapple mixture in pan, and cook, whisking often, 2 minutes or until smooth and thickened. Remove pan from heat, and cool.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; divide into 12 equal portions. Roll each portion to a length of 10 inches, forming a 6-inch base and 2-inch top (shape resembles a triangle with a flat top). Spread 1 1/2 tablespoons pineapple mixture on 1 side of each portion, leaving a border around edges.
Roll up each dough portion, starting at 6-inch end, and place on 2 lightly greased baking sheets (6 portions per baking sheet). Combine remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and remaining 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle evenly over dough.
Cover and let stand in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 15 minutes (dough will not double in bulk).
Bake at 375° for 15 to 18 minutes. Cool on baking sheets on wire racks.
Empanadas: Stir together 1 (15-ounce) can unsweetened pumpkin, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Prepare dough as directed. After dough stands 30 minutes, divide into 12 equal portions, and shape into balls. Roll or flatten balls into 6-inch circles. Spoon 1 1/2 tablespoons pumpkin mixture onto half of each pastry circle. Moisten edges with water; fold dough over pumpkin mixture, pressing edges to seal. Crimp edges of dough with a fork. Place on lightly greased baking sheets. Cover and let stand in a warm place (85º), free from drafts, 15 minutes. Bake at 375º for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets on wire racks. Makes 1 dozen. Prep: 50 min., Stand: 45 min., Bake: 18 min.
Cuernitos: Prepare dough as directed. After dough stands 30 minutes, turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide into 12 equal portions. Roll each portion to a length of 10 inches, forming a 6-inch base and 2-inch top. Roll up each portion, starting at 6-inch end. Gently shape each portion into a crescent, and place on lightly greased baking sheets. Combine 2 tablespoons sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle evenly over dough. Cover and let stand in a warm place (85º), free from drafts, 15 minutes. Bake at 375º for 15 ro 18 minutes. Cool on baking sheets on wire racks. Makes 1 dozen. Prep: 50 min., Stand: 45 min., Bake: 18 min.
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