Cloudy Kitchen Classic Pink Frozen Buns

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I developed this recipe during the peak of homesickness in New York. I grew up eating them like a supermarket treat and since you can’t get them in the US I knew I had to recreate. They are an instant nostalgia shot.

The dough is super soft thanks to the Tangzhong base, which is an Asian technique, and involves cooking some of the flour and water to form a thick dough, or roux. This gelatinizes some of the starch in the flour, which means that the flour is able to absorb much more water and retain it throughout the dough making process.

This results in a soft dough that stays that way for days. This recipe also makes amazing hamburger buns. I finished them with raspberry jam and pink frosting. If you want, you can also add coconut.

READ MORE:
* Cloudy Kitchen Easy Banana Bread
* Recipe: Easy Apple Crumble
* Vegan banana and chocolate chip muffins from Cloudy Kitchen
* Recipe: Ginger and Oatmeal Crunch

Cloudy Kitchen Frozen Buns

Preparation time: 45 minutes, plus the rise time

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Makes: 12 rolls

Tangzhong

25 g bread flour

120g whole milk

Brioche dough

All Tangzhong

200g cold milk

20g of caster sugar

7 g (2 teaspoons) instant yeast

30g powdered milk

½ teaspoon of salt

1 large egg (size 7), at room temperature

360g of high quality flour

45 g butter, at room temperature

Egg gilding – 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water

To garnish – 200g Jam of your choice (I used raspberry)

icing

260g icing sugar

20 g butter, at room temperature

¼ teaspoon of vanilla bean paste

20g boiling water

A tiny bit of pink or red food coloring, to tint the pink icing

To do the Tangzhong

Combine milk and bread flour in a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens into a paste. Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer.

To make the brioches

1. Add cold milk to the tangzhong and stir to combine, checking with your finger that it is not hotter than lukewarm (cold milk should cool the hot tangzhong sufficiently). Add the sugar, baking powder, powdered milk, salt, egg and flour. Put in a blender and assemble with the dough hook.

2. Mix dough on medium speed until smooth and elastic and clearing sides of bowl, about 12-15 minutes. Don’t panic, because it’s sticky – if you made it by weight you’ll be fine. Set a timer and step away from the blender if you need to. If after this time it really doesn’t come together and you are worried, add more flour a teaspoon at a time until the dough comes together.

3. Add the butter and mix for another 5 minutes or until incorporated. The dough should be smooth and elastic and pass the glass test.

4. Spread the dough on a surface and flour very lightly if necessary to form a tight ball with a table scraper. Transfer to a greased bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

6. Place the dough in a warm place and rise until it doubles in size, about 1 hour 30 minutes. Turn the dough over on a lightly floured surface. Butter and line a 23×33 cm or similar size pan.

7. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions, each weighing about 67 g. Working with one piece of dough at a time, flatten the piece of dough, then fold it into a ball, then twist the seam of the ball down and roll into a tight ball, taking your hand to create a “shape.” claw ”, using countertop tension to roll the dough firmly. Place on the side and cover lightly with plastic wrap. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough, grouping the balls together on your work surface with a little space between them so that they do not touch each other.

8. Let the buns sit for 10 minutes, then roll them quickly to tighten them. Arrange them evenly in the pan. You can also space them individually.

9. Cover the buns with a lid or lightly greased plastic wrap, or place a second baking sheet upside down on top to serve as a lid. Let the buns rise again for about 45 minutes to an hour. You want them to swell and double in size, and when you lightly press one of them it should leave a little indentation that doesn’t quite come back. See the pictures to see what they look like right after rolling and then lifting. Remember that the proofing time depends on your environment, so follow the appearance of the dough rather than the proofing time.

ten. When there is about 20 minutes left to rise, preheat the oven to 185C. Brush the buns with egg wash. Bake the buns for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven. Let cool in the pan. The rolls crumple slightly when cooling – this is due to the fact that they are very soft and this is quite normal.

Assembly

1. Transfer the jam into a piping bag fitted with a round nozzle or with the tip cut off. Alternatively, you can use a ziplock bag.

2. Poke a hole in the top of each bun using a baguette. Stir it to create space for the jam.

3. Pour jam on top of buns. Check that there is enough jam in the bun to know how much to add, you can put a clean finger in the bun to check how much jam it contains. (sounds weird but it’s the only way to check)

4. Combine all of the frosting ingredients in a medium bowl until a thick, smooth frosting forms. Adjust the boiling water or icing sugar until you get the right consistency – you want it thick enough to spread.

5. Divide the icing between the buns. Smooth with an angled spatula or the back of a spoon.

6. Let stand until a light crust forms on the icing or enjoy immediately. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature.

Remarks: This recipe is quite a sticky dough, so it is best to prepare it with a stand mixer with the dough hook. It is important that you use high quality flour as the dough needs flour to strengthen.

If you don’t have powdered milk, you can leave it out.


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