Cheesy, spicy, soft and spongy these Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls are easy to make. They are perfect for eating on their own or using in sandwiches.
It's rare that I follow a recipe precisely. But it's also rare that I come up with my own recipe from scratch without using anything as a guide. Well, at least it used to be. Over the past few months I made up a few baking items on my own. Some didn't work whereas others worked beautifully. Apple Pie Rolls are a perfect example of a perfect recipe that just happened. These Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls are another example. Actually, it's the other way around. I made the Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls for the first time last January and wasn't sure if the recipe was going to work. I was pleasantly surprised and made them again, this time recording a video. Then life happened: horrible morning sickness, unexpected birth of my daughter, two months stay at NICU - cooking and blogging were not on my mind. Now going through my previous notes, recipes and photos I found this recipe. I watched the video, half-remembering making these rolls, half-marvelling at my manicured hands. Could it actually be that easy? And more importantly, do these Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls taste good? I couldn't remember.
Watch the video below of how to make these rolls below
With these Rolls in mind I bought cottage cheese at Costco and decided to bake them last weekend while A. watched baby. Then life happened: Saturday we had in-laws over and I cooked dinner for them, on Sunday baby decided to stop sleeping, baby decided to breastfeed like crazy - baking these rolls just wasn't in the cards. On Monday miracle happened and baby slept in the morning. I made myself a cup of coffee and started making these rolls. And you know what? They turned out totally delicious - cheesy and spicy and soft and spongy and perfect for a sandwich. Bonus: they were super easy to make. Maybe not as easy as my Quick Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies, but quick enough that I'd definitely consider them to be part of my Mom-Recipe series.
So, what's the deal with these Rolls? The base is cottage cheese that is processed in a mini food processor until thick and smooth. Then you add an egg, a touch of sugar and pickled jalapeño peppers. Sugar is optional but I love the subtle sweetness in savoury baking. Jalapeño peppers are optional as well and you can make these buns not spicy. Or, alternatively, you could use fresh jalapeño peppers. I just happened to have a Costco-size jar of pickled jalapeños (I am not sure what possessed me to buy them). Once the wet ingredients are mixed, add grated cheese (totally fine to use pre-shredded, it'll make everything faster, easier and with less cleanup), flour and baking powder. Resulting dough will be sticky. In the video I oil my hands and then form the rolls. Today I used oiled silicone gloves to form the rolls. I don't use gloves too often, but sometimes the ease of cleanup is really appealing. Also, I knew I'd be touching and feeding baby after and I was scared that my hands would have jalapeños on them even after washing, so gloves really helped.
These Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls are spongy, spicy, cheese and delicious. They aren't too unhealthy as there's no butter or oil in the ingredients. I haven't tried myself, but perhaps they could even be made with whole wheat flour.
Cottage Cheese and Jalapeño Rolls
Makes 6 rolls
Cottage cheese - 1 cup
Egg - 1 large
Pickled jalapeño peppers, chopped - 1-2 tablespoons
Sugar - 1 teaspoon
Cheddar cheese - 1/2 cup
Flour - 1 1/4 cup
Baking powder - 1 1/2 teaspoons
Oil for forming the rolls
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- In a food processor pulse the cottage cheese until it's thick and smooth, about 30-45 seconds.
- In a large bowl combine the processed cottage cheese, egg, chopped jalapeño peppers, sugar and mix well until the egg is fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth.
- Add the cheese and mix.
- Add the flour and baking powder and mix until stick dough forms.
- Dip your hands in oil and form 6 rolls.
- Place rolls on a a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and bake for 35 minutes.
A few notes: go ahead and just use the food processor bowl to mix the dough - quicker and less cleanup! As I mentioned earlier, using silicone gloves is making life a lot easier with less mess. if you do decide to use them, still use some oil, this way you don't have to brush the rolls with oil before baking. No need to use jalapeños is you are not into spicy breads, or you can add even more peppers for an added kick.
Edit: I recently made a double version of this recipe. I doubled everything except for the flour, I found that instead of 2.5 cups I was able to use just under 2.25 cups of flour. It is quite common that double batch of the same recipe needs adjustments in dry ingredients.