Cyberman Pull-Apart Bread Will Delete Your Hunger
I was promised the eternal love of a 10 year old boy if I would pretty please make some Cyberman Fougasse. I don’t know how many of you have tried buying a child groom on the open market recently, but a couple hours in the kitchen with goggles, yeast, and a can of edible spray paint has to be a cheaper dowry than the full sized Millennium Falcon Lego Kit. How could I turn down a bargain like that?
I’m not entirely sure what to do with a besotted 10 year old. For now, I think I’ll leave him in his parent’s custody with the understanding I can cash him in whenever I need a poorly mowed lawn or an alphabet farting grand champion. As proof that I delivered my end of the bargain, I present yet another French inspired science fiction pull apart bread. One bite and your tastebuds will be upgraded.
Vegan Cyberman Pull Apart Sweet Bread
1 1/4 cups warm water
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp yeast
4 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp kosher salt
3 1/2 cups bread flour
Edible Silver Spraypaint
1/2 tsp lemon zest, optional
2 cups confectioners sugar
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp canola oil
pinch table salt
1/2 tsp lemon zest, optional
1 tsp red food coloring + 2-3 drops blue, optional
Like the Transformers Fougasse that inspired it, I decided to keep this recipe vegan. I could pretend this has something to do with not teaching our future robot overlords that animal byproducts can be used for fuel lest they hook us up to giant batteries, Matrix-style, or maybe I just don’t want my future undead vegan friends to associate me with meat after the zombie apocalypse, or perhaps I couldn’t fit the saddle on my mutant Texan waterbug in time to ride to the store for some fresh butter before the mandatory nightfall curfew. Pick whichever one you think sounds most probable.
Regardless of what you believe, mix the warm water, yeast, and 1 tbsp of sugar until all the solids are dissolved. Leave it alone for 10-15 minutes until your bowl looks like the yeast built a Martian dome colony. Interrupt their building spree by dumping in the lemon juice, canola oil, salt, and the rest of the sugar (plus the lemon zest, if you want a little more citrus goodness). Give it a good stir then add your flour.
Once you have a nice, white dough, attach a dough hook to your stand mixer and let it knead away for around 6 minutes. If you’re kneading by hand, keep it up for 8-10 minutes. Once you’ve stretched your glutens to your satisfaction, cover the dough with a kitchen towel and leave it alone for an hour while it doubles in size.
When you come back, the real adventure begins.
Punch the dough down. It’ll deflate pretty significantly. Divide it in half. Spread out a sheet of waxed paper, dust it with some extra flour, and roll your dough into a large square.
Grab a quarter of your spare dough and roll that out into a circle.
Now get a paring knife. I use a 2 ½ inch Tournee blade (also known as a bird’s beak paring knife). You want something sharp and easy to maneuver.
Start by cutting the circle into the middle of your Cyberman’s face. You’re essentially making a triangle with a dip in the middle and blunted ends.
Lay the face in the middle of your square. Pin it down by punching out two emotionless, empty eye sockets. Make the mouth by pressing your knife into the upper portion of the bread without cutting all the way through it. The mouth is a nice, simple pair of parallel lines.
The Transformers bread was a lot easier since it was made of simple, straight lines. Cybermen are surprisingly curvy. Make your life easier by carving all the straight lines first.
Once you have defined the face, then cut away the exterior until you have a somewhat squarish circle.
Remember all that extra dough? Roll more of it out flat. Cut three equal sized strips to make the Cyberman’s antenna. One goes flush with the top, the other two descend down to the ears. Find where the antenna becomes parallel with the bottom of the eye holes. We’re going to arbitrarily call that your Cyberman’s ears. Cut off the antenna there and use the scraps to point inwards so it all connects up.
I didn’t like the way my crown diamond looked, so I overlayed it with a teardrop shaped piece of dough connecting the antenna to the rest of the head and gently pressed a triangle shaped cookie cutter into the middle without going all the way through.
Carefully transfer your sheet of waxed paper to baking sheet and let the Cyberman’s head rise for another 30 minutes. While you’re waiting, you might as well knead the leftover dough scraps together and make a spare head. A real Cyberman would never let spare organics go to waste.
After your dough has risen a bit, bake it at 400F for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. The waxed paper may smoke a bit in your oven. Just turn on the vent fan and ignore it.
While you’re waiting for your Cyberman’s head to emerge from it’s Cybertransformation, go ahead and mix up the icing/dipping sauce. This isn’t strictly necessary, but it does exponentially increase the odds of engendering a 10 year old’s eternal love.
Simply whisk together the powdered sugar, lemon juice, canola oil, pinch of salt, and optional lemon zest until you have a lemony-fresh pourable sugar paste. This is for all you cinnamon haters out there. There are tasty sweet bread options that aren’t made from exotic tree bark. You’re welcome.
You can always take the easy route and paint the entire Cyberman head in icing. However, if you really want to impress a Whovian, stop by any craft store with a cooking section and pick up a can of edible silver spray paint. Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, and Jo-Ann all stock it in my area. Let the bread cool for 5-8 minutes before spray painting it silver. Serve it alongside a bowl of icing. If your Whovians have a strong stomach and a good sense of humor, dye the icing blood red first and tell them it’s leftover human juice from the Cyberman’s upgrade.
You can find plenty of recipes for your Doctor Who viewing party (including lots of other tasty aliens) in Dining With The Doctor: The Unauthorized Whovian Cookbook.
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