chocolate tahini buns


Last year during the U.K. lockdown, Honey and Co had to close their London restaurants. As well as take away meals they sold diy Fitzrovia bun kits and produced a video illustrating how to make the buns at home. As well as the ingredients to make their gorgeous fitzrovia buns, the kit also included ingredients to make half a dozen chocolate tahini sesame buns.


I have the Honey and Co bun dough recipe (see below) but didn't have a recipe for the chocolate tahini filling. The buns looked really good though and once I found some chocolate tahini spread (harder than it sounds) I set to work and whipped up my own version of these buns. Not every recipe works out first time but these buns were a winner. I shared a few with my neighbours and tucked a few in the deep freeze for later.

I made the buns over a 2 day period. I rested the dough overnight but it's winter here in Sydney so after I shaped the buns it took a few hours before they'
risen enough to bake. Instead of breakfast buns they became after lunch buns.


If you'd like to make a batch of chocolate tahini buns, here's the recipe for you which makes 6-8 buns. For all my recipes I use a 250ml cup and a 20 ml tablespoon, unsalted butter and 60g eggs. My oven is a conventional gas oven so if your oven is fan forced you may need to reduce the oven temperature by 20°C.

Chocolate Tahini Buns inspired by Honey and Co


70 g unsalted butter, diced and at room temperature

1½ tsp dried yeast

1 egg

30 g caster sugar

80–100 mls milk

300 g (2 cups) plain flour

A pinch of table salt


Place the butter, yeast, egg, sugar and 80 mls of the milk in a large mixing bowl, then top with the flour and salt. Use the dough attachment on your mixer or your hands to bring it all together to a smooth, shiny dough, adding the remaining 20 mls of milk if it looks dry. Don’t worry too much if you still have some whole flecks of butter running through the dough; they will make your final bun super-light.
Once the dough has a nice texture to it (after about 2–3 minutes with an electric mixer or 5–6 minutes working by hand), wrap the bowl in plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill for at least 2 hours. You can leave it there for up to 12 hours, but not much longer or it will start to double in size.
½ cup chocolate tahini spread 
65g dark chocolate, coarsely chopped 
65g halva, crumbled
Sea salt flakes
1-2 tbs melted butter or cream 
2 tsp sesame seeds 
1 batch base sugar syrup (recipe follows)
Base sugar syrup

75 mls water

75g caster sugar

2 tsp (10 mls) honey



Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out with a rolling pin on a very lightly floured workbench to a rectangle about 12 inches x 8 inches. You may need to flip the dough over once or twice to get an even, smooth sheet, but try to work with as little flour as you can so as not to dry the dough out.


Lay the rectangle length-ways in front of you and spread the tahini in a thin layer all over. Sprinkle with the halva and chopped chocolate at regular intervals on top. Finish with a few salt flakes then fold over the short edges to contain the filling before you start rolling.


Lift the long edge of the dough closest to you and start rolling it up away from you, keeping it nice and tight without stretching the dough, until you end up with a sausage about 12 inches long. If it comes out a little longer, push it in from both ends to condense it a little; if it comes out shorter, then use your hands to roll it out a little until it reaches 12 inches. Refrigerate for about 20 minutes to firm up the filling then cut into six, seven or eight even-sized slices, depending on how many buns you want.


Line a round tin with a piece of baking paper so that it comes up the sides in one piece, and lay the buns flat on the base, spiral facing upwards. This is the time to freeze the buns if you want to bake them at a later date; otherwise leave them in a warm place.


Preheat the oven to 220°C conventional. Allow the buns to continue rising until they look about ready to explode (another 20 minutes or so). The dough should have expanded to fill the gaps and it should be shiny and taut. Brush with the melted butter or cream and sprinkle the sesame seeds over the top of the buns.


Place in the centre of the oven and immediately reduce the oven temperature to 200°C. Bake for 10 minutes, and then turn the tin for an even bake. Reduce the temperature to 190°C, conventional. Bake for another 10 - 15 minutes or until the top of the buns are golden brown. Remove from the oven and pour all the sugar syrup over the buns. Allow to cool slightly before devouring.


While the buns are baking, prepare the syrup. Place all the ingredients in a small pan and stir to dissolve the sugar. Bring to the boil, skim off any foam that comes to the top and remove from the heat. If you are making a larger quantity (a litre or more), bring to the boil, skim and cook for 3–4 minutes, then allow to cool. You can make this syrup in advance — just keep it in a jar or bottle in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.


Here are a few guidelines to working with this dough from Sarit Packer:

·     Allow at least 2 hours to refrigerate it before shaping, as it can be very soft when freshly made. Ideally, if you plan ahead, make the dough the day before, place it in a large bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.


·    Try to work it with as little additional flour as you dare. The end product will benefit greatly.


·     Have all your fillings ready before you start on the dough. It also helps if you have your tray lined in advance.


·     If you are going to bake after shaping, leave the buns at room temperature to prove. If you are preparing in advance, freeze the unbaked buns as soon as they are shaped (to preserve as much yeast activity as possible when you send it to sleep in the freezer).


·     You can shape the buns in the evening, place them on the baking tray and pop them in the fridge to proof slowly overnight and bake first thing in the morning (a good way of making your partner or guests indebted to you for the rest of the day/week/year).


·     Filled buns will keep for up to a week in the freezer but after that they start to deteriorate and lose their plumpness.


·     Always freeze unbaked dough uncovered on a tray, then (once frozen) you can transfer to a container or freezer bag or wrap the tray with plastic wrap. When you are ready to bake, thaw overnight in the fridge before taking out to proof in the morning (or if you only sleep 5–6 hours, simply leave them out at room temperature, and when you wake they should be ready to bake).


The buns are at their best still warm from the oven, so the next day I just reheat them for 10 seconds in the microwave prior to serving so the chocolate has a chance to melt a little. These buns are a bit sweet, a bit savoury and simply delicious. 

See you all again soon with some more cooking from my kitchen. 

Bye for now, 



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