Fear no more - this post is to enlighten those who have not had the benefit of watching someone make this delicious meal in person, which I took for granted since I watched my mom make them throughout my childhood and learned the fine art of LFAB from the master herself.
It's not too difficult, but there are several tricks that aren't mentioned in the original recipe that's made its way through the grapevine. Once you've made a few, you won't even need the recipe anymore. Enjoy!
Lunch for a Bunch
This is a family favorite that I use every time I bring food to a new mom or a family in need, because it’s so tasty and reheats very well! 6-10 servings depending on serving size.
- 1 pkg. Pillsbury Hot Roll Mix
- For prep ease, the ingredients required to prepare as directed are:
- 1 c hot water
- 2 tbsp butter, melted
- 1 egg
Pillsbury Hot Roll Mix can be hard to find. I've had good luck finding it at Albertsons/Vons/Safeway, and sometimes at WalMart. If your store carries it, it will be on the baking aisle with the flour and other box mixes. It used to be in a blue box, but about a year ago they re-branded into a yellow box. Of course the Dough Boy makes an appearance. Hoo-hoo!
|Hot Roll Mix - thank you Pillsbury Dough Boy!|
|Ingredients needed to prepare hot roll mix as directed|
The other ingredients are not hard to find - the Ranch dressing mix will be with the salad dressing, etc. Grate your cheese and get your ham open before you start on the dough so assembly will go smoothly and quickly.
|Ingredients to assemble the LFAB|
One other thing I like to use (but my mom never had while I was growing up) is a silicone bundt pan. Any bundt pan will do, but having a silicone one makes things a lot easier because you don't have to spray/grease it - the LFAB slides right out no problem.
Prepare dough as directed on package, but DO NOT LET IT RISE AS DIRECTED. If you make the mistake of letting it rise, you will not be able to roll it out flat. I like to pull an Alton Brown and mix the dry team first (mix + yeast) then add the wet team after (water, egg, butter). Make sure your water is hot, not warm or boiling - its heat is what wakes up the yeasties to do their thing.
|All mixed up - it is supposed to be wet and sticky.|
Now it's time to knead and roll. HEAVILY FLOUR YOUR KNEADING/ROLLING SURFACE. I have a nice silicone mat I use, but you could even use your counter top as long as you flour it to prevent sticking.
|No really, lots of flour.|
Knead the dough 10 times. I took a ceramics class in college so I could do this all day. Very relaxing.
|Kneaded and ready to roll|
|Rolled and ready for layers of deliciousness|
Mix dry Ranch dressing with the 4 tbsp of butter. I use a small prep bowl to melt the butter in the microwave and a fork to "scramble" the ranch dressing powder into it. I pour the mixture evenly around the rectangle before spreading so I don't have to drag too much across to the corners. Then I use a silicone brush to smear it over the dough. A flat spatula works just as well.
Sprinkle on cheese, then position ham slices in one layer, with slightly overlapping edges.
Roll up tightly starting from one long end and pinch ends. Carefully place seam side down in your Pam-sprayed (or silicone) bundt pan.
Bake at 325° for 40-45 minutes depending on your oven. It should be GBD (Golden Brown and Delicious). Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. If you turn it out too early, it will completely lose its shape due to gravity.
Turn out onto serving platter or cooling rack to serve or continue cooling. If you've never done this, here's a tip - put the platter/rack upside down on top of the bundt pan, hold both on either side, and turn them at the same time. Remove the bundt pan (which is now on top) and viola! You have revealed the beautiful bundt shape on top.
|Can't you just taste it already?|
Serve warm or make ahead of time and reheat in the microwave or a toaster oven. Make your own variations - we've tried turkey & swiss and swapping the ranch for marinara and using pepperoni and mozzarella!
|Mmmm just the right balance of bread, cheese and meat.|
|My kids love carrots with the greens still on top. They also love LFAB.|