Pain Bâtard au Chocolat

“Nobody,” he said,
As he slid down
The banisters,
My darling,
Could call me
A fussy man –
I do like a little bit of chocolate to my bread!”

I’ve never been much of a fan of puff pastry, and the work involved in a traditional pain au chocolat seems unnecessary to me. So this is my version with chocolate chips set in a sweet roll. It’s easy.

3 scant cups of yeast starter
1 cup honey
½ cup oil
6 cups flour (I use half whole-wheat, half unbleached)

I’m not a very exacting measurer; this is about right, but I go more by the feel of the dough
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinamon
½ cup chocolate chips

Mix together and knead for 10 minutes or so. The chocolate chips will have a tendency to work their way out of the dough and pop down into the bowl. Just put them back.

Tear off small hunks of dough and form into balls about 1~2 inches in diameter. Place these onto a well oiled cookie sheet (or perhaps two). Cover with an old plastic carry bag (to keep humid) and allow to rise for an hour or three.

Preheat oven to 350. Cook 1″ rolls for 15 minutes, 2″ ones for a bit longer.

† If you don’t have a pot of pet yeast starter sitting around the kitchen you can simulate it by adding 2 cups of flour to 2 cups of water and a packet of dry active yeast. Let this sit for a while until bubbles form.

Or if you are a bit more adventurous and want to start your own starter, here are some directions.

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