Here’s an easy and festive treat for warm winter breakfasts! Get your ingredients out now in prep for New Year’s morning, Three King’s Day, for Orthodox New Years, or a birthday delight.
Tia Marta here to share how, using a quick biscuit dough, you can insert your favorite wild desert berries and seeds to make a sweet swirl–no long waiting on yeast-rising for this goodie. Dig out those wild seeds and juices you harvested last summer (always thinking ahead)….
RECIPE–SOUTHWEST CINNAMON SWIRLS
Ingredients for dough:
2 cups sifted flour (*heirloom white Sonora wheat with 1/4 cup amaranth flour makes a great mix)
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup butter
3/4 cup milk of any kind
*white Sonora wheat is available at Barrio Bread Tucson; whole wheatberries for home milling are available at NativeSeedsSEARCH or from www.flordemayoarts.com .
Ingredients for inner swirl (use what you have):
1/4 cup agave nectar (or or mesquite syrup, or desert honey which will spread more slowly)
1/4 cup pine nuts (de-hulled) (OR, chopped AZ walnut or pecan meats, or crushed bellota acorn meats)
1/4 cup dried berries (desert or canyon hackberry, dry saguaro fruit, cherries, raisins, cranberries)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 cup saguaro seeds (OR popped amaranth seed, or wild chia seed)
Directions for inside swirl: Mix together all swirl ingredients (except seeds) for spreading on dough.
Directions for dough: Sift dry ingredients together. Cut in butter to pea size or smaller into dry mixture. Add milk and stir to form dough ball. Knead with fingers 10-20 “turns”. Pat dough out on flour-dusted board. With flour-dusted rolling pin, roll dough to about 1/2 inch thickness.
Preheat oven to 450F. Spread gooey cinnamon/agave syrup/nut mixture evenly onto flattened dough. Sprinkle with desert seeds. Then tightly roll the flattened and bedecked dough into a “log”. With a sharp knife, cut rounds of the “log” 1/2 inch thick and place each swirl on an uncreased cookie sheet. Bake 12-14 minutes. Serve hot with melted butter, or top with (tah-dah!) Tia Marta’s saguaro or prickly pear glaze (recipe follows).
RECIPE–Tia Marta’s Easy Saguaro Glaze and Southwest Hard Sauce
Ingredients: 2-3 Tbsp softened butter
1/2 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
1/3 cup saguaro syrup, prickly pear syrup, or mesquite syrup
Directions: Beat softened butter with confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Gradually add up to 1/3 cup saguaro syrup or other desert fruit syrup mixing thoroughly to spreadable consistency. Apply to tops of cinnamon swirls. (You may want to make this glaze ahead and chill before spreading, but no-chill works for me.)
There’s only one more step to make this the most fabulous Southwest Hard Sauce: Add 1 tsp of local agave mescal (try bacanora) to your glaze spread and voila–You have created a hard sauce! (Goes great on brown-bread, bread pudding, holiday fruit dishes, or to make your cinnamon swirls into a rich dessert.)
May the New Year 2021 bring you little swirls of joy, adventure and nutrition given generously by our Southwest desert plants–Feliz Año Nuevo! from Tia Marta