Blackberry Buns with a Sweet Milk Glaze

Buns and Breads

Hi Joe

I’m sat in a cafe right now and they love Mamma Mia! They’ve been playing the film soundtrack for 3 hours.

It’s an unassuming cafe; the tables are brown, the walls are grey, and they sell the same caramel crunch slices you get in every Costa Coffee between Glasgow and Oxford, and propbably beyond. I love it.

Blackberry Buns!! I’ve been trying to find a way of getting fresh fruit into cinnamon roll form without them baking into soggy fruit bum rolls for quite a while now – and i’ve cracked it. They are pillowy soft with a slight kick of sharpness from the blackberries, mellowed the second it hits the tounge by the sweet milk glaze.

These buns come with thanks to the lovely Rosa, baker and owner of too many forks, who agreed to test this recipe for me last week. Thank you Rosa!

Note on Dough For this recipe, I use the same dough as in my cinnamon rolls. It can be made on the day or the night before you want to bake these buns. If you choose the night before, allow the dough to have the first prove in the fridge overnight. The next morning you can fill, shape, prove then bake. This dough tends to rise quite fast though so you can easily do it all in one day. I’ve given you instructions as if making this dough by hand but if you’d prefer to use an electric mixer allow a dough hook to do the kneading for you – I’ve done it both ways and I can’t tell a difference.

Note on Filling – The filling needs to be cooled completely before using. It can be made a few days in advance.

Ingredients

For the Blackberry Filling

  • 60g sugar
  • 150g fresh blackberries
  • Squeeze of lemon
  • 1 tbs water
  • 10g cornflour

For the Dough

  • 250g strong white bread flour
  • 25g caster sugar
  • 7g active dry yeast
  • 1tsp salt
  • 20g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 medium egg
  • 80ml milk
  • 60ml water

For the Sweet Milk Glaze

  • 70g icing sugar
  • 30g cream cheese
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp milk

Method

Making the blackberry filling. Add the sugar, blackberries, and lemon juice to a small heavy bottom saucepan. Mixing occasionally, simmer on a medium heat for 5/6 mins until the fruit has broken down and the mixture has reduced.  

Whilst the fruit cooks, combine the water and corn flour to form a loose paste. When the fruit has had 5/6 mins, lower the heat, and add the corn flour paste. Whisk briskly. Keep whisking the mixture for about 1 minute, until it has thickened. Remove from the heat and pour into a clean bowl. Allow to cool completely before using.  

To make the dough. In a large bowl add all ingredients for the dough apart from the 60ml of water. Mix everything together with one hand, or a metal spoon, squeezing the dough to incorporate the milk. Add the water and give it another mix and squeeze to form a shaggy mass. 

Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface. It is a sticky dough and will still want to stick to the work surface a little even once it has had enough kneading – don’t be tempted to keep on adding flour to your worksurface. Knead for about 10mins until smooth, elastic, and tacky. If using a mixer, stop when the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball around the dough hook.

Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film. Allow to rise until doubled in size, about an hour. If making this the day before, allow to rise in a warm place for 15mins before transferring to the fridge for the night.  

The last step is to fill, shape, prove and bake the buns. Grease and line a small rectangle baking dish, I use a 25cm X 18cm one. Set aside.  

Tip the risen dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Press into a rectangle shape with the long edge closest to you. Roll the dough out to roughly 9 X 13inch. It can be a little wider, for example 10 X 13inch, if you want a swirlyer swirl. You don’t have to worry too much about the exact measurements of the rectangle, so long as it is a rectangle shape and about half an inch thick, you’ll be grand. As you roll, gently pull the corners of the dough to keep as best a rectangle shape as you can, it will make the rolling and cutting easier.

With the 13inch side closest to you, spread the blackberry filling evenly over the dough, going right to the edges.  

Roll up the dough tightly so you end with a sausage of dough 13inches long, seam side down on your work surface. Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 2inch pieces. You should get 6. If you are very good at maths you will see I’ve given you an extra inch to play with in case something goes wrong, you are welcome! Put these buns, swirl side up, evenly spaced in the lined baking dish.  

Cover with a tea towel or cling film and allow to prove until doubled in size. The rising time will depend on the temperature of your home, usually they need about an hour and a half. You can tell they are ready for the oven like this: very lightly press a fingertip into the dough, your fingerprint should fade away as the dough puffs itself back, fixing the dent you made and returning to its original position. How poetic.

While the buns prove, pre heat the oven to 180 / 160 fan.  

Bake the buns for 25 – 30 mins until golden brown on top.  

Finish with the icing. Mix the icing sugar, cream cheese, vanilla, and salt. Stir in a tsp of milk. If you want a looser icing add in the other tsp. Let the buns sit out of the oven for 10mins before pouring over the icing. It’s best to let these cool for a futher 10/15 mins to let the structure set before eating…hey look, this bun needs the respect it deserves.

Have a good bun boiii oii ! Caitlin x

The Only Cinnamon Rolls You Will Ever Need

Buns and Breads

Hi Joe

This recipe makes Cinnamon Rolls how I think they should be. Soft and pillowy, swirled with a slightly-salty, sugary cinnamon filling, covered in a not-too-thick vanilla cream cheese icing that gets all over your face when you eat it. Out the oven, these buns are sticky and soft from all angles, with the icing on the top and a buttery caramel that bakes itself into the bottom of the buns as they bake.

Joe, I know sweet buns ain’t really your ting but Sue wanted Cinnamon Rolls a couple months back, so I made her a cakeonmyface version. Since then, I’ve noticed lots of friends and family seem to be LOVING living the Cinnamon Roll life (Shannon, Emma, Shabri, Jess and Jerry, I’m looking at you).

You make this dough the night before you want Cinnamon Rolls. It makes the whole baking process much quicker.

You don’t need a stand mixer to make this dough. I just use hands.

My dough recipe is borrowed from Paul Hollywood’s iced finger buns. Cheers Paul, it works perfect for Cinnamon Rolls.

Ingredients

For 6 Cinnamon Rolls

Dough

  • 250g strong white bread flour
  • 25g caster sugar
  • 20g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 7g sachet instant yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 80ml warm milk
  • 60ml water

Filling

  • 90g light brown soft sugar
  • 1 generous teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 40g unsalted butter, very softened

Icing

  • 70g icing sugar
  • 30g cream cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons milk

Method

The night before you want the Cinnamon Rolls. In a bowl add all the ingredients for the dough apart from the 60ml of water. Mix everything together with one hand, squeezing the dough through your fingers to incorporate the milk. Add the 60ml of water and give it another mix and squeeze.

Tip out the dough from the bowl onto a floured surface, you can be generous with the amount of flour you use. Don’t worry if the dough looks shaggy at this stage. Knead the dough for about 10 mins until it feels smooth, elastic and not too sticky. There is no right way to knead just repeatably squash, fold and roll the dough however you like. The quicker you knead the less time you will have to knead for.

Put the dough in a lightly oiled mixing bowl. Cover the bowl with cling film. Leave for about 20 mins before putting it in the fridge over night.

The morning. Grease and line a small rectangle baking dish (I use a 25 cm x 18cm one). In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the filling apart from the butter. Set the sugar filling aside.

Take the dough out the fridge, tip it onto a lightly floured work surface and squash it into a fat rectangle. Roll out the dough to a 9 x 13 inch rectangle. As you roll, gently pull the corners of the dough to keep as best a rectangle shape as you can, it will make the rolling and cutting easier.

To fill and roll the dough position the 13inch edge towards you. Leaving a centimetre around the edge of the dough free from filling, spread the butter evenly over the dough rectangle. Sprinkle over the sugar mixture and pat down.

Roll up the dough tightly so you end with a sausage of dough 13 inches long, seam side down on your work surface. Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 2 inch pieces. You should get 6. If you like maths you’ll notice I’ve given you an extra inch to play with in case something goes wrong. Put these buns evenly spaced apart in the baking dish. If you want the central swirl of each bun to rise up a little, like mine in the pictures, hold a bun in one hand like you would a glass, gently push your thumb of the other hand up, into the centre swirl of what will be the underside of the bun.

Cover with a tea towel and leave somewhere warm (on a chair next to the radiator) until doubled in size. The temperature of your home will depend on how long this takes, but it will be roughly and hour and a half. You can tell they are ready for the oven by lightly pressing a finger into the dough, if it springs back to its original position, the yeast is happy and it’s ready for the oven.

Pre heat the oven to 180 (170 for a fan oven). Bake the cinnamon rolls for 25-30 mins, until golden brown on top.

Mix together the icing sugar, cream cheese, vanilla and salt. stir in a teaspoon of milk, if you want a looser icing add the other teaspoon. Let the buns sit out of the oven for 10 mins before pouring and spreading over the icing.

Have a good cinnamon roll, love Caitlin xxxx