Yam Buns (and impromptu sausage cheese buns too)

For those that really knows me, knows that I don’t like eating sweet buns / bread. Not a “yeast” person, at all. But definitely not hater tho. I do enjoy eating certain types of buns like probably just Yam Buns and the wholemeal tuna bread from la boheme (but now don’t taste good anymore).. And maybe focaccia, ciabatta, and baguette. Well sorry if I’m biased but I don’t quite understand Asian type of breads. period.

*too much softeners and improvers* 

But well, then one day my friend asked me if I know how how to make sweet buns. I said, “not really because I don’t like eating them, hence I don’t make them. But we can make together la, just for fun.

So on we went. Coincidentally both of us liked yam buns, so we decided it will be Mr. Yam.

Basically the bun has a) mashed yam filling, b) the bun of course and c) skin wrapper. Let’s start with the mashed yam first.

Mashed Yam Recipe
250g yam
50g caster sugar
2 tbsp milk / cream
pinch of salt

1. For the yam, peel of the skin, dice it into cubes. Steam yam for about 20 minutes or so, depending on how thick you cut them anyway. Check for doneness. It should be soft when poked into.
2. Add in caster sugar and milk / cream and salt. Mash with fork when it’s still warm. Leave aside.

It’s quite pale / lavender in colour, almost greyish. Not very appetizing by looking at it Hahaha.

Sweet Bun Dough Recipe
(makes about 10-12)

330g high protein flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp milk powder
50g caster sugar
1 egg
110ml lukewarm water
10g instant dried yeast
40g butter

1. Combine flour, salt, milk powder and caster sugar in a mixing bowl with dough hook attached. Give it a slight blend, then add in egg, water and dried yeast.
2. Knead till combined (about 5-7 minutes) to form a dough. Add in butter and beat dough for further 5 minutes till gluten strands form. You can pick a small piece of dough and stretch it out with your fingers till it gets thinner and thinner in the center. Look for strands (which would be darker / thicker; like roots) in that piece of stretch dough. When you see that, it’s ready for the next step.

3. Remove dough into a big bowl and cover it with a piece of damp cloth. Leave bowl in a warm place and proof dough for 30-40 mins till double in size.
4. Remove from bowl, knock out the air by punching dough with your knuckles. Divide dough into 50g portions. Shape into small balls.
5. Flatten dough. put some yam filling, seal and wrap into a smooth ball. Place on a greased baking tray. Make the skin wrapper.

Skin Wrapper Recipe.
100g sweet bun dough (measured out after proofing for the 1st time – step 3)
40g butter
40g plain flour
dash of purple yam paste / flavouring.

1. Combine all ingredients together and divide into 30g portions.

(When we did this, I actually measured wrongly so it came out a bit too crunchy.. haha)

6. Cover the bun with skin wrapper. Make sure you cover the entire facade of the bun. We actually didn’t know and didn’t wrap the entire bun, hence it didn’t looked that smooth and a tad messy.
7. Leave to proof for 45 minutes. Cover in a damp cloth.
8. Bake in a preheated oven at 190 C for 20 minutes. To check, flip the bun and knock the bottom, it should sound hollow, and of course darkened.
9. Cool on wire rack.

Fluffy bread, checked. Lots of yam filling, checked. yay ?

Well the basic sweet bun dough is quite versatile. You can make lotsa breads with it once you’ve proofed it once. I tried making some sausage bun with cheese and… sausage ?? Duh

. Basically it’s the same process of making the dough, flatten it and stuff but instead of wrapping yam filling, I wrapped a sausage instead.

After putting the filling and stuff, leave it to proof for another 30-45 minutes. Brush with egg wash, then sprinkle more cheese on top. You can put chicken floss / bonito flakes etc etc..

Tips :
1. When shaping the dough into small round balls, it is not needed to flour the surface, otherwise the bun will not be smooth.
2. Make sure you seal the bottom of the bun properly to prevent filling from leaking out.
3. Don’t skip the proofing process. If bread is underproofed, it will be denser that what it’s suppose to be. Leave it in a warm place (somewhere near the oven) to quicken it.

Maybe next time I’ll make the wholemeal tuna bread….

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