Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Rosemary and Lemon Buns

I made a lemon tart with a rosemary filling last week and absolutely loved, loved, loved the pairing of the two in the creamy tart. Rosemary and Lemon, what a pair. Definitely a coupling I intend on exploiting further. 

I forged straight ahead and combined the two in a soft bread. 

I reverted to the tangzhong bread method which I knew would yield a really light, soft, pillowy bread. I wanted a sweetish bread - one that I could eat on its own with no need for a filling or a spread. Just bread with the additional flavours all mixed in already. 

Speaking of additional flavours, I had some leftover saffron-infused double cream which I'd used in my version Yotam Ottolengi's Broad Bean Kuku (frittata) and so I decided to use cream as the liquid for my buns instead of a water/milk combination I usually go for. 

Can you just imagine it? Cream, cheese, saffron, rosemary and lemon. My oh! my.

Rosemary and Lemon Buns

For the roux
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp custard powder
60ml milk
60ml water

For the loaf
350g bread flour
2 tbsp milk powder
4 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp instant yeast
1 egg
80ml saffron-infused cream (heat milk+1 tsp saffron threads till boiling and let sit to infuse for 30 mins)/milk (set about 3 tbsp aside to brush on your bread)
40ml water
30g butter, softened
2 sprigs rosemary, chopped fine
zest of 1 lemon

Mix the ingredients for the roux together till smooth. Put the mixture in a saucepan on the stove until it thickens to the consistency of mayonnaise, more or less. Leave to cool.

Mix the flour, sugar, milk powder, salt together. Add the yeast and whisk it in too. Add the egg and the cooled roux and mix it into the flour mixture with your hands. Add the cream/water gradually and bring everything together to form a rough dough (it won't be smooth - as long as it comes together, it's fine).

Cover and leave to proof for 10 mins.

After 10 mins, uncover and add the softened butter and gently knead it into the dough until it's well incorporated. Knead the dough a couple of times by gently stretching the dough with the heel of your hand and folding it over. Turn it 90 degrees and repeat. Cover and allow it to rest for another 10 mins.

Once it's rested for 10 mins, knead the dough a few times (maybe for about 3-5 mins) and then cover. Repeat this another three times. The sough should expand a little each time.

Once the final knead has been done, cover and let proof for about 45 mins to an hour or until doubled.

Gently punch the dough down with your fist (be gentle) and shape as you desire: a loaf or buns as I did.

Place the buns/loaf in the baking pan and let it sit for about 20-25 mins for it to rise one final time. Brush the cream you kept aside on the bread.

Bake in a 180C pre-heated oven for about 20-25 min (a little longer if its a loaf) or until golden and cooked through (check the underside of the loaf if you are unsure).

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