Have you ever reflected on what true Canadian dishes are? Have you noticed a lot of them are full of fat or sugar. There’s a reason for it all, it’s because of our long cold winters that we have no choice but to devour these warm rich dishes to keep us warm. I’m definitely not complaining, just need to run an extra kilometre or so.
Beaver tails, in my opinion deserve to be a Canadian classic. Much more preferable than Hawaiian pizza, sorry not a fan. They are the ideal snack, especially during the winter, after a nice skate or a ski down the hill. I think about our trip to Mont Tremblant (before children) and after a night of tubing, eating a freshly made beaver tail was the perfect finish! Nowadays, it’s our family tradition to head to Collingwood every summer and on my list before I leave is to enjoy a beavertail.
I decided I would attempt to make beaver tails, however I didn’t want to fry them. Frying the dough is what makes it soft and crispy and all that oil absorbed really adds to the flavour, but not so healthy. I definitely would eat them fried, but it’s not healthy and if there is a way I can make a baked alternative, I am there!
They actually taste really good! The key is you want the cinnamon sugar to bake with the dough, as opposed to waiting after it has baked. My favourite way to eat these is sprinkle some lemon juice and a little extra cinnamon sugar and my heart is happy!
I do recommend eating them right out of the oven, as they taste best then. I have even broken them up into pieces and combined it with vanilla ice cream. Do you enjoy s’mores? Swap the graham crackers for the baed beaver tail (obviously cut into smaller pieces) and see how it tastes, you won’t be sorry!
Baked Beaver Tails
1/4 cup warm water
- 8g pkg of active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup milk, warmed
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 2 Tbsp butter, melted (plus another 2 tablespoons of melted butter)
- 2 Tbsp sugar, plus 1 tsp for yeast mixture
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 egg
- 2-1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
Cinnamon Sugar Topping:
1 cup sugar
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1. In the bowl combine the warm water, warm milk, yeast and 1 tsp sugar (this is to help feed the yeast). Let stand until foamy, approx. 10 minutes.
2. In a bowl, whisk melted butter, sugar, salt, vanilla and egg. Combine the yeast mixture until combined thoroughly. Using a wooden spoon, add flour and mix until the dough comes together and no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl. Knead for 8-10 minutes by hand, until the dough is smooth, silky. Use extra flour if dough is sticky.
3. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp towel. Leave to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
4. Punch down dough and place onto a lightly floured countertop. Shape into 6-8 equal sized pieces. Using a rolling pin, roll out each piece of dough into an oval shape. If you like, score a crisscross pattern in the top of dough.
5. Place on a lightly floured baking sheet and leave to rise, covered, for 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
6. Make cinnamon sugar by combining sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
7. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter.
8. Using a brush, spread butter onto each beaver tail, sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture right after.
9. Preheat oven at 350F/176C. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, once they have reached a golden brown colour.
Enjoy with whatever toppings you like, a spritz of frehs lemon juice, nutella or even some ice cream!
Can these be made ahead of time and frozen?
They definitely can, but they will taste best right from the oven.
They can, but I think they are best made fresh.