Nettle Rolls

May 05, 2015

Here in Turku we get the first sight of green after a harsh winter in April. It's time to harvest the tiny tops of nettles. But, be careful! They look tender and harmless, but stinging nettles are given this name for a reason. If you touch the plant, you will be stung and the pain can last for hours. It's wise to use gloves.

12 pcs.

1 L (4,25 cup, US) nettles > 1 dl (0,4 cup, US) mash 
4 dl (400 g) water and nettle water 
25 g fresh yeast 
1,5 tsp salt 
3 tbsp honey 
1 dl (55 g) milk powder 
2 dl (120 g) graham flour
50 g room-temperature butter
about 10 dl (650 g) wheat flour

Use a scissors to cut the nettle tops. Avoid the dirt (pieces of soil, sand or gravel). 

Using dishwashing gloves, rinse the nettles well under cold water to remove any dirt. Place the nettles in a small pot. Add couple of decilitres of cold water. Bring it to a boil and simmer for two minutes. Take the nettles out of the pot. (Save the water.) Using an blender, puree. You will get one decilitre of mash. 

Add cold water to the warm nettle water untill you have 4 dl liquid.

Stir the yeast, salt and honey into the water. Mix in the milk powder and graham flour. Knead the room-temperature butter and the wheat flour into the dough. Keep kneading until the dough is elastic and bouncy, about 10 minutes if you knead the dough by hand.

Cover with a tea towel and let the dough rise at room temperature for 30–45 minutes. The time depends on the temperature of the water, when you soaked the yeast in it. The colder the liquid, the longer it takes. 

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, admire it's spring green color and knead slightly. Divide the dough in half. Roll each half into a rope. Cut each rope into 6 pieces. Shape each piece into a ball. Dip into flour. With a sharp knife, make cuts into the floured rolls. Line two baking trays with parchment papers, place the rolls on them, cover and leave to rise at room temperature for 20 minutes. 

Preheat the oven to 225°C. Bake for 15 minutes. 

Cover and let cool on a wire rack. 

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