One of the hardest things about living in NYC is being so far from the great state of Texas. I miss being near my family and friends, the mild winters, the state pride, open skies, but most importantly...THE FOOD (just kidding, family is more important!!). Don’t get me wrong, New York City has a plethora of food options from every culture and ethnicity that range from food trucks to fancy dining. While pretty much everything here is beyond incredible, there are a couple things New Yorkers don’t do right – Tex Mex (r.i.p. queso) and KOLACHES. While I have heard there is a real Czech-Texas-inspired Kolache place in Brooklyn, I am very skeptical of it being the real thing. I should definitely try it though before I completely dismiss it though, I guess..
Anyway, when I first moved here and tried the amazing-ness that is a New York bagel, my obsession was unreal. I dreamed about them everyday for like a year (No, I did not eat one everyday for a year. Or every week for that matter..) A toasted everything bagel with lox and plain cream cheese – the dream. I'm not sure why they are even so good here. I think it has something to do with the water they boil them in? But sometimes when I eat a bagel I can’t help but feel a little guilty, like I'm betraying some Texas past. The question almost always comes up every single time Kyle and I get bagels—But...which do you like better? bagels, breakfast tacos, or kolaches?!? Well actually, I'm the only one asking, Kyle doesn't seem to be very interested with my inner conflict of breakfast food choices.
I brought this up to some of my coworkers, and no one had ever had a kolache. The worst part? They had never even heard of them! Apparently kolaches don't really exist here, or in the entire Northeast it seems. So one day on my train ride home, I began thinking about kolaches, and how I missed them, so I decided to make them and share them with the poor lost souls who had never had one. (I couldn’t make breakfast tacos because that’d be difficult to make ahead of time and still taste fresh, and also people don’t understand eating tacos for breakfast here for some reason).
So, here are the kolaches. Warm, soft, pillowy, sweet, doughy goodness. With yummy sausage in the middle. The perfect balance of sweet and savory. Great with coffee, and maybe some fresh fruit. *drooling*
I modified this recipe from The Homesick Texan’s version, just so that it would make 12 instead of 8 (seriously, this is quite a bit of work, and for only 8?!) You will need to set aside a few hours to do this--I had a Gilmore Girls marathon on in the background, so it wasn’t too bad. These also refrigerate/freeze extremely well! Just pop them in the microwave when you are ready.
- 1½ cup whole milk
- 12 tablespoons (1½ stick) unsalted butter
- 1½ tablespoon (1.5 packets) active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 egg yolks
- 14 oz. kielbasa sausage, cut into 12 (2-inch) piece
Directions: Modified from original recipe here:
Over medium heat, warm the milk and 6 tablespoons of the butter until the milk is just beginning to steam, but is not boiling, and the butter is melted. Remove from the heat.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yeast, sugar, salt, and 3 cups of the flour. Pour in the warm milk mixture and stir until a sticky dough has formed. Cover the dough and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Beat together the oil and egg yolks. Pour the eggs into the flour mixture and blend until fully incorporated. Slowly stir in enough of the remaining 3 cups flour until the dough comes together and is soft but not sticky. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until it is smooth.
Place the kneaded dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Allow to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Grease or line a baking sheet with parchment paper. After the dough has risen, punch it down and divide into 12 even-size pieces. In your hands, roll the pieces of dough into balls and then flatten them into disks 4 inches in diameter. In the center of each piece of dough, place a piece of sausage. Fold one side of the dough over the other and roll, then seal by pinching on all sides. Place on the baking sheet 1 inch apart, seam side down. Cover and allow to rise for 45 more minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Melt the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter. Brush the tops of the kolaches with half the melted butter. Bake, uncovered, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until lightly browned. After you remove them from the oven, brush each klobasnek with the remaining melted butter. Eat!