Let’s get one thing straight. Baking while you are on holiday is a little crazy. Not because you should be off swimming or sunbathing or, here’s a thought!, letting the bakeries do that for you… but because it is is too darned hot! I am still on my holidays and it has been so hot that turning on the oven is just asking for trouble. But I am nothing if not a little (baking) crazy so I had this notion of making sweet buns with tahini and honey and a little sweat wasn’t going to stand in my way.
I am so glad that I did – they were just amazing. Sweet but not cloying, super soft and slightly sticky… I am getting the urge to bake again just typing this. Because these dozen buns are but a sweet memory now having been demolished as soon as the camera stopped clicking (and some before I even managed to take the lens cap off). Photographing food in bright sunshine is a pain by the way… give me the softly diffused London light over scalding Greek sun any day of the week.
If you have never baked yeasted buns (or is it rolls? I can never decide) this dough is very obliging. I mean it. It is a well behaved dough that turns out great even if you are a novice baker with a yeast phobia. You can knead the dough by hand until elastic or use a stand mixer. You can even use a bread machine (add the wet ingredients first followed by the dry with the yeast at the top) but make sure it can handle the quantity of flour specified in the recipe.
For the dough
1 tsp ground cinnamon
- Put the yoghurt, butter and tahini in a measuring jug and microwave for about a minute until the butter has melted. Stir together, add the beaten eggs and mix again.
- Put the flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl and mix together. Stir in the wet ingredients using a wooden spoon until everything is incorporated.
- Tip the dough onto your worktop and knead for about ten minutes until it is elastic and forms a smooth ball. If the dough is too sticky, sprinkle with a little flour.
- Grease your mixing bowl with a little olive oil. Place the dough the bowl and cover with a clean tea towel or plastic bag. Leave to rise until double – this can take up to 1 1/2 hours.
- Dust your worktop with a little flour and tip the dough on it. Press on the dough to deflate and then roll or spread with the palm of your hand to form a rectangle about 1.5cm (just over 1/2in) thick.
- In a bowl, mix the tahini, sugar and honey to form a thick paste. Spread the filling over your dough using your fingers, leaving a small border around the edge. Sprinkle with the cinnamon.
- Starting on the long side closest to you, roll the dough into a log. Trim the edges. Cut into 12 even pieces using a pastry cutter or sharp knife.
- Line a large tray with baking paper and lightly grease the paper with olive oil. Place the buns on the prepared tray, spaced about an inch apart. Brush with a little egg wash and loosely cover with a plastic bag. Leave to rise for about an hour until puffy.
- While the buns are rising again, preheat the oven to 180C (350F). Brush them with the egg wash again and sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
- Bake for 34-40 minutes, covering with foil after 20 minutes if they are colouring too much.
To make in a stand mixer, put all the dry ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer and mix together using the dough hook for a few seconds. Add the wet ingredients (see step 1 above) with the mixer running on low speed then mix together for 7 minutes on medium-low speed until the dough is elastic and forms a glossy ball. Proceed with step 4 as above.
If you like the look of these then check out these fabulous creations
• Chocolate Almond Rolls with Almond and Vanilla Bean Glaze from Vikalinka.
• Wholemeal Maple Pecan Buns from Half Baked Harvest.
• Cardamom Almond Cinnamon Buns from Domestic Gothess.
• Sour Cherry Chelsea Buns from Maison Cupcake.
• Chocolate Almond Krantz Cake from Franglais Kitchen.
• Overnight cinnamon buns from MBakes.
• Honey bread rolls from Hungry Healthy Happy.
• Apple, Cinnamon and Almond Swirls from Cygnet Kitchen.