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Marzipan, Honey & Cardamom Buns

For this recipe it is best to prepare the dough a day in advance as it makes it a lot easier to work with the next day. It’s not a complicated recipe but I recommend reading it entirely first before getting started. You get a lot of buns from this recipe which is why I froze some of the unbaked buns so I can have one fresh from the oven on another weekend. I’ll just have to take one out, leave it on a plate in the evening, covered with clingfilm, and bake it the next morning.

Ingredients

Brioche Dough:

  • 20g fresh yeast or 10g dried yeast

  • 250ml whole milk

  • 2 eggs

  • 90g caster sugar

  • 600g plain flour

  • a pinch of salt

  • 100g soft butter

  • vegetable oil

Filling:

  • 160g marzipan (50% almonds or more)

  • 120 soft butter

  • 85g clear honey

  • 1/2 tsp cardamom

Glaze:

  • 80g caster sugar

  • 80ml water

  • 1/4 tsp cardamom

Method

makes about 12 medium sized buns

  1. To make the yeast dough, heat the milk in a saucepan but only until it’s luke warm so that when you stick your finger in you won’t feel a difference in temperature. Add the yeast and stir to dissolve it. If you’re using fresh yeast you can use your hand to rumble it up a bit.

  2. Place the remaining ingredients either in a large bowl or in the bowl of a free standing mixing machine. Knead the dough by hand or with the machine (using a dough hook) until it comes off the sides of the bowl. This can take 10 minutes, even if you’re using a machine. Once you have a smooth dough transfer it into a different bowl, brush the surface with vegetable oil, cover the bowl with cling film and leave the dough to rest and rise in the fridge for 8 hours or overnight.

  3. For the filling, cut the marzipan into cubes and place it in a bowl. Add butter, honey and cardamom. You can either mix this by kneading the ingredients together with your bare hands or you can use an electric mixer. When all the ingredients are well combined, the filling is ready to use.

  4. Dust your work surface with flour and drop the dough onto it. Shape it into an ball and cut a cross into the top (use images as reference here). Open the cross by tearing the corners in the opposite direction that their pointing at and thereby open the ball of dough into a square shape. Dust with flour and start rolling out the dough using a rolling pin. Roll from top to bottom, left to right, changing the direction not to stress the dough too much .Once it is rolled out to about 65cm x 40cm, you can spread th filling onto the lower half using a small step palette knife. Fold the top half over the filling. Your dough should now measure 65cm x 20cm. Cut the dough vertcally in about 5cm thick strips. Then cut these strips again vertically in half but starting about 2cm underneath the fold (Again, use images as reference).

  5. It’s time to twist the buns. Take the two ends of one strip and twist them in the same direction. You will see that they will naturally start curling into a circle. Let one twist make a circle first, then twirl the other one around it. This step sounds tricky but don’t worry if your buns don’t look all the same. Mine didn’t, this takes practice (they will all taste the same = delicious).

  6. Preheat the oven to 160°C (fan oven). Place the buns on a baking tray (I fit eight at a time on a regular household oven tray) and leave them to rise for another 20 minutes. Then bake them for 20-25 minutes.

  7. In the meantime prepare the glaze. Put sugar and water into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Leave to cook on medium heat for a couple of minutes more, the take the pan off the heat and stir in the cardamom.

  8. Once the buns are out of the oven brush them with the glaze an leave them to cool, if you can resist.

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