jammy breakfast buns

I bought a copy of Julia Busuttil Nishimura's new book 'Around the Table' which I gave to a friend for her birthday. I looked through the book before I wrapped it and it's filled with beautiful recipes. I don't have my own copy but on a recent flight to Brisbane I was able to download an extract from the book. These jammy breakfast buns caught my eye and as soon as I was back in my own kitchen, I made a small batch. 

I adapted the recipe a little to use what I had in my kitchen. I had some ricotta cheese which I used instead of cream cheese then I filled the buns with plum jam and some cherry jam I found lurking in the back of the cupboard. Instead of apricot jam alone I used a few apricot halves which I then topped with a spoonful of jam. The buns rose a great deal in the oven and were huge so next time I'd probably make them a little bit smaller. 

Here’s Julia's original recipe for you, which makes 10 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.

Jammy breakfast buns - makes 10
400g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
10g active dried yeast
100g caster sugar
1 teaspoon fine salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
150ml full-cream milk
4 eggs (3 for dough, 1 for egg wash)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
165g unsalted butter, softened
150g jam of your choice
Demerara sugar or flaked almonds, for sprinkling

Cream cheese filling
200g full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
1 egg yolk
60g caster sugar
zest of 1 lemon

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the flour, yeast, sugar, salt and cinnamon. Warm the milk in a small saucepan (to about 38°C on an instant-read thermometer), then add it to the dry mixture along with the three eggs and the vanilla extract. Mix the dough on medium–low speed for about 15 minutes, scraping down the side of the bowl every 4–5 minutes. It should be still quite soft, but not overly sticky now. Add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, mixing well between each addition. This will take about 8 minutes. Mix the dough for a further 4–5 minutes, until the dough is shiny, elastic and coming away from the side of the bowl.

Stop the mixer and lift up the arm. Take a little piece of the dough and stretch it out between your hands. You should be able to stretch it without tearing until it’s almost transparent enough to let light in. This is called the windowpane method and it’s a good way to see if enough gluten has developed in the dough. Continue mixing and checking until you can create a ‘windowpane’ successfully. Transfer the dough to a lightly buttered large bowl and fold the dough in on itself a few times to create a smooth ball. Cover and set aside to rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Knock back the dough, then transfer to a work surface, dusted with a little flour if necessary. Divide the dough into ten pieces, about 100 g each. Working with one piece at a time, roll the dough into balls by tucking the edges into the centre, then turning over and rolling on the work surface with your hand in a circular motion. Avoid using too much flour, as the friction of the dough on the work surface is necessary to create a smooth ball. Arrange the balls between two trays lined with baking paper, leaving adequate room for them to rise and spread. Cover loosely with a clean tea towel and allow to rise for a second time in a warm spot for 1 hour or until puffy. After 30 minutes, preheat the oven to 180°C.

In a small bowl, whisk the cream cheese together with the egg yolk, caster sugar and lemon zest. Make a deep indentation in the centre of the buns with your fingers. Fill the buns with a tablespoon each of the cream cheese filling, followed by a dollop of your chosen jam.

Whisk the remaining egg with 1 teaspoon of water, then brush the buns with the egg wash and sprinkle over some demerara sugar or flaked almonds. I like to do some with sugar and some with almonds, for variation. Transfer the trays to the oven and bake for 16–18 minutes, until the buns are golden and well-risen. They are best served as soon as they have cooled down.

I had one of the buns straight from the oven and it was absolutely delicious but they were still good the next day, reheated for a few seconds in the microwave.

See you all again next week with some more baking from my kitchen.

Bye for now,


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