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 heatproof 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 375F. 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.