I think monkey bread was the first thing my younger brothers ever baked. They loved the gooey mess of making them as much as the caramel goodness of eating them. Truth told, when I leave the house for any amount of time, my husband makes them with my own boys. He waits until I leave, because he knows the ovens won’t be in use and he can sneak the tube of biscuits into the house. Yep, I’ve found the discarded tubes in my house. As a result I never get to eat them, which I think is part of his master plan. Here is my twist on the classic with chocolate tucked in homemade biscuits. I’ve baked them as individual Monkey Muffins to make them even more festive for a party or Sunday brunch.
Some of you may know that I’ve partnered with Gold Medal Flour for my bread website, breadin5.com. It was a natural fit, since we always tested our bread recipes with their flour. Gold Medal is the most widely available and it has consistent results loaf, after loaf. They have recently redesigned their flour bags and sent me a bunch of samples to take a look at. One of the new designs is for the self-rising flour. I can’t use this in my yeasted bread recipes, but I love making biscuits with it. The results are perfect every time and it means having to hunt for less ingredients.
Chocolate Caramel Monkey Muffins
2 1/2 cups self rising flour (if you don’t have self rising flour you can use 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour + 1 tablespoon baking powder + 3/4 teaspoon salt)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup chocolate chips, may need more for top
Cinnamon sugar topping:
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon corn syrup
2 tablespoons heavy cream
To make the biscuits:
Preheat oven to 400°F
Line 12 muffin cups with papers or grease generously
In a large bowl blend the flour and butter together until it resembles coarse meal.
Add the buttermilk
and combine until it is evenly wet.
Put the biscuit dough on a floured surface and press it together into a rectangle.
Roll into a 1/2 thick rectangle. Cut the dough into 48 even pieces. Place two chocolate chips on each and gently pinch the dough around the chips.
In a small bowl mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Roll the chocolate filled dough in the cinnamon sugar.
Place 4 of the biscuits in each muffin cup.
Over low heat, melt the butter, brown sugar and corn syrup together in a small sauce pan. Cook until the sugar seems to be dissolved, you will need to whisk to keep the butter from separating. Spoon half the mixture evenly over the biscuits.
Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown and set in the middle.
Remove the biscuits and top with more chocolate chips. Reheat the remaining caramel, and add the heavy cream.
When the caramel is warm and smooth, spoon it evenly over the hot biscuits.
Let them cool slightly before serving, but they should be eaten slightly warm.