Among the most popular sweet breads, molletes get their characteristic scalloped design from a tool caled a dulce marker (see "Cook's Notes," page 97, for ordering information).
1 (1/4-ounce) envelope active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (100º to 110º)
2/3 cup sugar
5 cups bread flour
1/2 cup shortening
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3 drops red liquid food coloring
How to Make It
Stir together yeast, 1 cup warm water, and 2 tablespoons sugar in a 2-cup liquid measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes.
Stir together 6 tablespoons sugar, bread flour, 1/3 cup shortening, eggs, and salt in bowl of a heavy-duty electric stand mixer. Add yeast mixture to flour mixture,and beat at medium speed with mixer, using dough hook attachment, 6 minutes.
Combine remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, food coloring, and all-purpose flour in a bowl, and cut in remaining 3 tablespoons shortening with a fork until blended to form a paste.
Divide dough into 12 equal portions; shape into balls, and place on 2 lightly greased baking seets (6 balls per baking sheet). Spread 2 teaspoons flour paste on top of each ball. Slightly flatten each ball using a dulce marker dipped in flour or a kaiser roll stamp dipped in flour. Cover dough with wax paper or plastic wrap.
Preheat oven to 170º to 200º; turn off oven, leaving oven door open 1 minute. Place dough, covered, in oven; let rise, with oven door closed, 2 hours and 10 minutes or until doubled in bulk. Remove dough, and preheat oven to 425º.
Bake molletes at 425º for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool mollletes on baking sheets on wire racks.