I always look forward to Christmas mainly because I will get excited about preparing Christmas meal for my in-laws and my family. The usual menu will include appetizer, mains will be turkey and dessert. Sometimes, I will also prepare drinks. And of course, I will seek my helper's assistance in the kitchen for the cutting and washing. I usually do the baking myself.

For the appetizer for my in-laws this year, I decided to make a sour cream dip. In order to go with the dip, I made Grissini. It was my first time making this. I'm not a big fan of hard and crispy cookies or breads. But I figured Grissini will taste good with dips, and it was confirmed when my family loved the combination so much.
Recipe for Grissini, adapted from Alex Goh's "The World of Bread."
(Makes at least 20 sticks, depending on your length. I have a mix of short and long)

250g Bread flour
2 tsps Instant yeast
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Sugar
150g Cool water
35g Shortening

1. Mix all, except shortening, in low speed to form a rough dough.
2. Add shortening and continue on medium speed to mix to form a smooth elastic dough. Approximately 5mins.
3. Place the dough in a bowl, cover it and let it proof for 45mins.
4. Mould the dough into a ball, let it rest for 15mins.
5. Roll out the dough into a rectangle (L12cm x W50cm).
6. Cut the dough into strips (W1cm x 12cm).
7. Moist the palm lightly with water before rolling the dough. Stretch the dough strips slightly, roll them out about 18cm long then roll them in sesame seeds.
8. Put them on a baking tray lined with baking paper and brush them with water and sprinkle with salt. (I omitted the salt).
9. Let them rest for 10mins then bake at 220C for 15mins.
10. Allow them to cool, then bake at 120C for another 15mins to make them dry and crispy.
11. Serve, or keep them in air-tight container to be served later. bread_grissini1
To make sour cream dip, fried 2 slices of bacon till crispy, then cut them into coarse pieces. Blend 2 cups of sour cream (400ml) with bacon bits, spring onions and smoked paprika until finely. To have more variety for the dip, prepare carrot strips, cucumber strips, cooked prawns and Grissini. Enjoy the feast!
bread_grissini3 bread_grissini4


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