As you might have guessed through my baking posts, I have a significant fondness for Asian breads and buns. You can’t always access them readily here in Perth so making them myself became an early mission here on Gastromony. Indeed, the day I made my own Melon Buns (Meron Pan) was probably one of the happiest baking moments in my life. Truly!
Anyway, although I’ve tried various types of bread dough recipes, I finally found a great Asian bun dough recipe via Christine’s Recipes which calls for the use of the magical Tangzhong. The best way to describe Tangzhong is a bread improver. It’s a mixture of cooked flour and water (or milk, or both) that seems to assist the gluten of the dough at the baking stage so it produces an extra fluffy bread that stays fresh for longer.
I’m not sure about the science of Tangzhong but I have been pretty happy with the results so far. I decided to use it for some coffee flavoured scrolls I’d been meaning to bake for a while. These scrolls are also relatively healthy and heart-safe so a good baked treat for my husband who is watching what he eats a bit ore than before. Butter be gone!
For that subtle coffee flavour, it’s possible to use instant coffee granules but as I had been enjoying Griffiths Coffee’s Just Fair blend lately since they kindly sent me a tin to try, I decided to use the full bodied blend to flavour my scrolls. To do this, it’s a simple matter of boiling up some water, waiting until it cools down a little, then adding three tablespoons of the water to one tablespoon of ground coffee. I let the mixture steep until cool to the touch then strain.
I use about two tablespoons of the coffee in the dough and the rest goes into the nut streusel filling. I’m not after an intense coffee flavour but you can alway try steeping two tablespoons of coffee in 3 or 4 tablespoons of hot water to amp up the taste. I like a subtle hit of coffee in the scrolls to compliment the accompanying flat white for afternoon tea :)
I like hazelnuts for the streusel filling but walnuts are just as nice :) The recipe below doesn’t require tangzhong so I’ve modified the recipe to suit. I’ll explore more tangzhong recipes later, as well as how to make tangzhong with the Thermomix.
Coffee Scrolls with Streusel Filling
380g bread flour
55g caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
one medium egg
125 ml milk
2 tablespoons of brewed coffee (see above, or use 2 teaspoons instant coffee)
1/2 tsp instant yeast
30g Nuttlex margarine or butter if preferred
1/2 cup hazelnut meal (or blitz up your own with roasted hazelnuts)
1/2 cup Demerara or raw sugar
1 tablespoon of brewed coffee or 1 tsp of instant coffee
2 tablesepoons of Nuttlex margarine or butter
To Make: Place bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast in Thermomix bowl and combine with a quick blitz on Speed 3. Add egg, milk and coffee to dry mixture and use the the Thermomix’s bread function for about 3 minutes. Check to see if dough has come together and comes away from the bowl. If not, you may need to adjust by adding a tablespoon of flour at a time and giving it 30 seconds on the dough setting. If dough seems dry, add a tablespoon of milk at a time instead. Add margarine or butter to TMX bowl and use the dough function again for a minute until fat has dispersed through the dough. Transfer dough to a bowl, wrap and allow to proof for an hour in a warm place.
Combine streusel ingredients into clean TMX bowl and blitz on Speed 4 until well combined. Set aside. When dough has risen, place on a floured surface and knead out gas for a minute. Divide dough into three, roll each portion out as flat as possible into a long oval shape. Spread streusel filling across the dough and carefully roll into a long log. Cut into four portions, placing each piece with rolled edge upwards in a baking tin. Allow enough space between buns for further rising. Repeat with remaining two dough portions. You should have twelve small scrolled buns (I think I ended up with ten in the example here but it’s OK!). Cover with damp cloth and allow to proof again for 30 minutes in a warm place. Pre-heat oven to 160C (180C regular oven) and when buns have risen, brush over with an egg wash then bake for 18 minutes, checking to see if the top is golden. If they sound hollow when tapped, they are ready. Allow to cool before pulling apart and serving.