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Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls)

Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls)
Today we're bringing you a Cinco de Mayo edition of #TwelveLoaves, featuring Mexican breads! I immediately thought conchas, since they are my favorite of all Mexican breads, but since I've already posted two concha recipes in the past (and have another one coming up in the semi-near future), I decided to choose something else. A type of bread that I'd never made before, but had been meaning to—telera rolls.

Teleras are the base for tortas, aka fabulous Mexican sandwiches. Obviously you can stuff them with whatever you like, but my hands-down favorite kind is a torta con milanesa de pollo (chicken breast pounded thin, breaded and fried). If the hubs and I go out for lunch when the kids are at school, that's pretty much what we both order. Every. Single. Time.

So, teleras it was. I was chugging along nicely with my first batch. I used a Diana Kennedy recipe, because I really liked the way she used a dowel to make the indentations in the dough. I'd whipped together the starter the day before, and it was a beautifully sunny afternoon for baking bread as I admired the ovals of dough lined up on the baking sheets, visions of tortas dancing in my head.

And then I opened the oven to find dough that hadn't risen or turned any semblance of golden. I kind of wanted to cry. Or at the very least, pout. They looked exactly like they did when I slid them into the oven—only dry and ugly instead of soft and inviting. Boo. I'm sure I'll get hate comments for saying this, but I always have issues with Diana Kennedy's bread recipes. (Attention haters: I'm not saying that Diana Kennedy isn't an expert and that she doesn't make amazing food. She totally does. Bread making is an entirely separate beast.) I don't know why I would have thought I'd have better results with this one. Ever the optimist.
But, I'm not one to be defeated that easily, so I turned to someone that rarely lets me down in the bread department, King Arthur (Flour). This recipe called for slashing rather than pressing a groove into the dough. I really dug those grooves, but since I was making these just a day before I wanted to share them (that would be yesterday), I decided to stick with what the recipe said.

I actually think it may have been my aggressive groove-making that led to the demise of the first batch of teleras. Diana told me to press until I felt like I was going all the way through, so I did. I think that kind of sealed the dough together. It still seems like it would have risen, though, causing explosions and tearing. I will revisit it one day. I'll probably also toy with lighter-handed groove-making on this recipe next time I make them—just to see what happens.

Either way, I loved the texture and taste of this telera recipe, it's definitely a keeper. The only thing I'll toy with in the future is the slashing vs. pressing method of making the signature "humps" in the top of the rolls.

Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls)
A soft bread roll, most often used for making Mexican tortas.
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Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls)
by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes (largely u
Cook Time: 20-22 minutes
Keywords: bake bread nut-free soy-free vegetarian Cinco de Mayo Mexican

Ingredients (10 rolls)
  • 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon butter or lard, melted and cooled (or vegetable oil)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt
  • 520 grams (~4 cups) all-purpose flour + more as needed
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
egg wash:
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Place dough ingredients in the pan of a bread machine in order listed (or according to manufacturer's instructions). Choose dough cycle and let it do it's thing (mix, knead, rise).

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide into 10 pieces. Using floured hands roll each piece into a ball. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for 5 minutes.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Working with one dough ball at a time, gently pat out into an oval, using the edges of your hand to tuck the dough under as needed. Each oval should a little thick than 1/4-inch. Place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with all of the dough.
forming teleras
Cover loosely with plastic wrap that has been oiled on the bottom and allow to rise until almost doubled in size, 30-45 minutes. Preheat oven to 400° F during last 15 minutes of rising.
dough rising
Beat the egg and water together, then brush the tops and sides of the telera dough with a thin coat of the egg wash. Lightly oil a lame or knife and make two lengthwise parallel slashes on the top of each roll.
washed and slashed dough
Slide trays into preheated oven and bake for 20-22 minutes, or until golden (or temperature reads 190° F on an instant-read thermometer when inserted in the center. Cool on a wire rack before serving or storing.

-slightly adapted from King Arthur Flour
Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls)
So, in honor of Cinco de Mayo and this month's edition of #TwelveLoaves, I bring you Telera Rolls, or Mexican Flat Bread Rolls. Below you can see what the rest of the twelve loaves bakers are sharing, and a few more Mexican yeast bread recipes that you can find right here at All Roads Lead to the Kitchen.

#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Savoring Italy and runs smoothly with the help of Heather of All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, and the rest of our fabulous bakers.

Our host this month is Heather from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, and our theme is Mexican Breads. For more bread recipes, visit the #TwelveLoaves Pinterest board, or check out last month's mouthwatering selection of #TwelveLoaves Cheese Breads!

Bolillos from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Cemitas from The Bread She Bakes
Conchas de Pan Dulce from Savoring Italy
Conchas (Mexican Sweet Bread) from Hostess At Heart
Mexican Cemitas from Karen's Kitchen Stories
Pan de Muerto from A Shaggy Dough Story
Teleras (Flat Bread Rolls) from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen
Whole Wheat Mexican Bolillos from Kudos Kitchen By Renee

If you'd like to bake along with us this month, share your Mexican Bread using hashtag #TwelveLoaves!

More Mexican Yeast Bread Recipes at All Roads Lead to the Kitchen: