Investing in baking equipment / machines is always well worth my money cos' i fully utilise it! Haha. I made these ham buns on a sunday and was well received by those who tried it. The bread maker helped me in kneading of the dough. I adopted Happy Homebaker's method of kneading it for 30 minutes, and the dough was well kneaded, soft and elastic. :)
This sweet bun recipe was from a chinese cookbook I had. Somehow this recipe was very sticky to the hands even though it had already pulled away from the sides of the bowl. I had to flour my hands and work surface generously.
The shaping method was adopted from Cafe of the East - Hotdog buns. It is a rather straight forward method and I believe picture speaks a thousand words. ;)
Here's the sweet bun recipe (By the way, this recipe was initially for polo buns, but I used it for my ham buns instead).
300 g bread flour
24 g milk powder
3 g bread improver (may be omitted)
150 g water
3 g instant yeast
20 g caster sugar
3 g salt
30 g egg + extra for egg wash
30 g butter
Handful of spring onions, chopped
1 tsp canola/olive oil
dash of pepper
10 slices of picnic ham (square shape)
- Sift flour, milk powder and bread improver (if adding).
- Combine sifted ingredients with the rest of the ingredients (except butter) and mix to form a dough (Do not allow salt to come into direct contact with the yeast).
- Add in softened butter and continue mixing with your dough hook (knead if you do not have a stand mixer) until the dough becomes smooth, shiny, elastic and pass the windowpane test.
- Place dough in a bowl, let it proof for about 60 minutes, or until double in size.
- Punch out the gas, and divide the dough into 10 equal potions, each about 60 g. Let it rest for 20 minutes.
- Roll each dough into a square the size of the picnic ham.
- Place the ham on the dough, and roll it (swiss roll style).
- Cut the rolled dough with ham wrapped inside into 5 equal portions (do not cut through entirely).
- Twist and turn the dough to form a shape of a flower (it looks prettier with the ham facing upwards).
- Let shaped dough proof for another 50 minutes or until double in size.
- Mixed chopped spring onions with oil and pepper.
- Brush pproofed dough with beaten egg, sprinkle spring onions on top.
- Bake in preheated oven at 180°C for 15-20 minutes.
Note: I used my bread maker to help me with the kneading. I added the ingredients according to the sequence: water, egg, milk powder, sugar, salt, flour, yeast. After 10 minutes of kneading, then i added in the butter.
Recipe Source: 面包，吐司，饼干 by 杜丽娟，李湘庭
The bread was quite soft and fluffy. But my friend said that it tasted more saltish instead of sweet than the usual buns sold outside. Probably I need to reduce the amount of salt in future!
I had fun with the shaping of dough and it's really satisfying to have homemade ham buns for my mum. I'm definitely gonna try out more bread varieties! :D