Look, pocky. Or something like it, anyway. Regardless, these pretty much sell themselves. The dough is easy to work with, they're clearly adorable, and the flavor addition options are endless. We kept our coatings light because these were not the main attraction for the party we were taking them to. In fact, it was only at our friend's generous invitation that we made these to support her spread of inspired frozen desserts. (Did you see those? So great.) At this particular party, she offered two(!) vegan options, Aperol granita and chocolate-chile gelato. Both incredible. Do not hesitate to commission her to make your vegan frozen treats. She's incredible.
For the pocky, we made three lightly sweet drizzles/sandings/glazes:
Dark chocolate with vanilla salt
Maple caramel with smoked salt
Naturally, feel free to go wild with dips and glazes and serve them as the star of your own party. They won't disappoint. And if you're in the mood for something even more minimal, triple the amount of orange zest called for in the recipe and snack on them plain.
A note on kneading: Because this is such a small amount of dough, we found it pointless to fool with our stand mixer. When we tripled the recipe (it triples like a dream, by the way) for the party above, we used the mixer for convenience to free up our hands. Use your judgement, but for a single recipe, we really recommend using your paws.
2 tsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup lukewarm water
3/4 cup bread flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBSP tahini
3 TBSP maple syrup
1 tsp orange zest
2 TBSP unrefined coconut oil, melted
1-2 tsp water, as needed
Combine the yeast and warm water in a small bowl and set aside to proof.
Sift the flours and salt into a mixing bowl. In another small bowl, combine the tahini and maple syrup.
Add the yeast mixture and the maple-tahini mixture to the flours and stir to form a dough. Add the zest and melted oil and combine again. Add 1-2 tsp water as needed to get a cohesive, firm, kneadable dough. (If your dough is too wet, add a bit of flour.) Knead the dough by hand for 3-5 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 350. Dust a clean work surface with cornmeal.
Divide the dough in half, form one half into a ball, sprinkle a little more cornmeal on top, and roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Slice the dough into 6x1/8-inch strips. You'll end up with 40-50 strips per half. Place the strips on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
Bake for 5 minutes, rotate the pan 180 degrees, and bake another 5 minutes. (While the first batch bakes, roll out and cut the other half of your dough, as above.) After that, begin to watch the progress carefully as you bake them a few minutes (2-5) longer. The sticks need to be golden brown (anything less and they won't be crispy), but be careful not to let them burn. Transfer to a wire rack to cool and repeat with the other half of the dough.