Now that we’ve had a proper winter, I’m really looking forward to spring; I hope it’s just as spectacular. Without any warning, we got our first taste of spring on Friday. Birds sweetly chirped in the morning, a gentle air blew through and the sun warmed up the day nicely. We haven’t been as fortunate this weekend, though. The rain is here and it looks like we shan’t be seeing the sun again for another week! This is disappointing but not terribly, I’ve been meaning to practise moody grey food photography anyway. Perhaps another batch of peanut butter and marmite rolls is in our future.
I have two giant jars of marmite in my cupboard at the moment. We aren’t eating it fast enough and it’s nearing the expiration date, I’ve been thinking up ways to use it up. Now I know marmite isn’t for everyone, but it’s played a beneficial role in my family’s diet; my sister ate it as a child to help treat her anaemia, and decades later it helped with my mum’s mouth sores during cancer treatment. So we always keep a jar of marmite around, it’s a good source of B vitamins, which are essential for wellbeing. Thankfully I’m in the “love it” camp when it comes to the heady savoury dark paste.
I got the idea for these rolls from this humble peanut butter and marmite toast I often make. Marmite adds a tasty tang to peanut butter, a superb combo in bread. Then there were marmite rice cakes slathered in peanut butter. It’s even better baked into bread, it caramelises delightfully between the warm rolls, deeply savoury, buttery, nutty and salty. It’s more savoury than sweet, and perfect, hot from the oven with a warm beverage for breakfast or teatime.
Of course, you can totally omit marmite when making these if it’s really not your thing, you’ll get some nice peanut butter rolls, but that teaspoon of marmite makes these rolls so much more. Lately, I’ve been thinking of making a version with jam – classic peanut butter and jelly buns.
I may have mentioned this before, but because this takes some time to prepare, it makes for a fun weekend project. Most of that time is letting the dough rest and rise, so you can go about doing other things in between.
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds + 3 tablespoons water
- 3/4 cup almond milk, warmed to 110 degrees f.
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup sugar, divided
- 2oz (1/4 cup) coconut oil, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour or white whole-wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Olive oil (for brushing tops of rolls)
- 2/3 cup peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon marmite
- 1 tablespoon non-hydrogenated plant-based butter, softened
- Mix ground flax seed and water in a small cup or bowl, set aside and let mixture thicken for at least 5 minutes
- Mix 1 tablespoon sugar and yeast in warmed milk, stir and let mixture sit and proof for 5 – 10 minutes, until it gets foamy and fragrant
- Add flax, coconut oil and vanilla extract, mix well to combine
- Combine remaining sugar, flour, cardamom, nutmeg and salt in a large bowl and mix
- Make a hole in flour mixture and pour in yeast mixture, use a wooden spoon to mix until dough becomes wet and shaggy
- Knead dough in the bowl until it comes together roughly
- Turn dough on to a lightly floured work-surface and knead dough until it comes together completely, and becomes smooth and elastic
- Dough is ready if it bounces back when you stick a finger in it
- Form dough into a smooth ball and place in a lightly oiled large bowl; cover with plastic wrap and let dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour
- Stir peanut butter, marmite and (other) butter together, beat well to mix and add a little air to mixture
- One dough has risen, and turn it back on to dusted work-surface and roll dough into (about 12” x 9”) rectangular shape, about 1/4 inch thick
- Spread filling evenly over dough surface
- Starting from the long end, roll dough up tightly
- Use a sharp knife to slice dough into 8 – 10 equal rounds
- Arrange rolls on a parchment paper lined pan or baking sheet, placing them about 2 – 3 inches apart, cover loosely with a towel and put in a warm place and let rolls rise, about 30 – 45 minutes
- Meanwhile preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- When rolls are ready to bake, brush the tops lightly with olive oil
- Bake for 15 – 20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown
- Serve warm and enjoy!
- Alternatively, you can use your bread machine or stand mixer (using dough hook) to prepare dough.
- For bread machine, follow the machine’s instruction, and add ingredients in the suggested order per the instruction e.g. wet ingredients first then dry ingredients or vice versa.
- Feel free to adjust marmite according to your preference