It's fun and rewarding re-creating this pan dulce from la panadería. It may not be as good as the real thing but it made me relive a little piece of my childhood!
I had been searching for a recipe for elotes, or pan dulce mexicano, for a long time. It's one of my favorites from the panadería (bakery). One of the reasons I love searching for recipes on Pinterest is that there are many recipes in Spanish as well. Some are a lot easier to translate than others. The other day as I was pinning away, I saw this recipe pop up from one of the boards that I follow. It took me a little while to figure out the measurements exactly, but I just could not wait to test it out! I only added a few things to the original recipe, such as anise, extra cinnamon and orange zest.
Once it's baked, the dough is more like a cookie in texture than a bread.
On a flat surface or large cutting board, add the 2 cups of flour. To the flour, add 1 teaspoon yeast, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/3 cup sugar. Mix with hands. Using your fingers, mix in the egg. Gradually mix in the water; the dough will be lumpy. Add in the cinnamon, anise and shortening. Knead the dough until smooth, about 5 to 7 minutes. Cover and set aside for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
In another bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the filling. Mix with hands until dough forms. Make 15 small balls and roll them between the palms of your hands to form a skinny cigar shape, about 2 inches long. Transfer to a plate, cover and set aside.
Make 15 equal dough balls with the reserved dough. Using a tortilla press lined with wax paper, press the dough ball out to about 3 inches. Using a knife or metal spatula, score straight lines across the flattened dough. Turn it and score it again so it crosses the other lines. Carefully flip over and add filling down the center, fold in sides, and press to seal. Pinch the end together and shape almost like an ear of corn. Place seam side down onto lined baking sheet.
Sprinkle with sugar and bake for about 20 minutes, turning the pan halfway through baking time. Bake until golden. Cool completely before storing in an airtight container. Make 15 small elotes.
To the last 5 elotes, I added a bit of blackberry filling. As long as the filling is thick and not runny, you should be able to use most fruit fillings.