Cachitos are little ham-filled, crescent-shaped rolls. Quite popular for breakfast in Venezuela, they are sometimes called Venezuelan croissants, but they have the rich texture of a dinner roll rather than the flaky texture of a true croissant. They are also much easier to make than croissants!
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons vegetable shortening
- 1 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon instant yeast
- 2 eggs
- 4 cups flour
- 1 pound thinly sliced deli ham
- Cut butter and shortening into small pieces and place in a heat proof bowl of a standing mixer. Bring the milk just to a boil in a saucepan over medium high heat.
- Pour hot milk over shortening and butter and stir until melted. Let cool slightly.
- Add sugar, salt, and 1 cup flour to butter/milk mixture and stir. Add eggs and stir well.
- Add yeast and mix well. Add rest of flour and mix.
- Using dough hook attachment, knead dough until smooth and stretchy, adding more flour if necessary. Knead for 5 minutes. Dough should be soft, and slightly sticky.
- Place dough in a lightly greased bowl and let rise in a warm place until double in size, about 2 hours. (or chill overnight in the refrigerator).
- Punch down dough and divide into 4 pieces. Roll one piece out into a 10 inch circle. Using a pizza cutter, cut dough into 6 equal triangles, or pizza slices.
- Take 1/4 pound of the sliced ham, and cut it into thin strips. Divide the ham among the 6 triangles, placing it on top of the wide part of the triangle.
- Roll the triangles up toward the point, keeping the ham inside, and place the rolls point side down on a baking sheet, curving them slightly to form a crescent shape.
- Repeat with remaining dough.
- Brush rolls lightly with melted butter, then let rise in a warm place until doubled.
- Preheat oven to 375. Mix egg white with 1 teaspoon sugar. Bake rolls for 10 minutes. Remove, brush with egg white mixture, and return to the oven. Bake about 10 minutes more, until golden brown.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.