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In Bread, Recipe on
November 1, 2011

Coconut Rolls



Hope you all had (or are having..) a great Halloween and did not spend the day like me, at home supposedly ‘studying’ but of course, not getting much work done 😉 It’s at these times of the years (right before exams) that my list of things to bake suddenly grows exponentially- and I’m not even kidding, I’m filling out pages of my notebook with ‘things to bake after exams’. And I’m not even including the things that I might like to bake!

The list itself doesn’t consist of much bread this time around. This is probably because I haven’t been to an Asian bakery for a while now and lack a bit of inspiration- I love walking into Breadtop, looking at their overpriced buns and just imagining how easy it would be for me to make the same thing at home!!

I’ve said that I’m getting back into bread baking, but since I haven’t been to an Asian bakery for a while now, these buns are taken from my second source of bread inspiration, cookbooks. I was surprised to find a recipe for baked coconut rolls in my mum’s Chinese yum-cha recipe book, though a lot of the recipes in the book were for things you don’t normally find at yum cha

 I was pretty happy with the bun dough I used last time, especially since the dough was quick and easy to make so I stuck with that recipe and used the book for the shaping method. The cutting and twisting creates thin layers of bread, coated with a sweet coconut mixture which are similar to that of the coconut buns I normally make. These layers are thinner though, and so the texture of the bread doesn’t really shine though as much which means you don’t really need to go to all the effort of making very smooth bread, but may not be the perfect recipe for people who like the balance between the soft texture of bread and the  sweet coconut filling (like my parents). I personally prefer this version, as I love the crispiness and stronger taste of the baked coconut- and I think it looks prettier too! 😉

Coconut Twist Rolls

Recipe for bread dough from Køkken69

6gm Active Dry East
160gm Bread Flour
40gm Plain Flour
50gm Sugar
2gm Salt
50gm Water
1 Egg
40gm Butter

3 eggs, beaten
1 cup dessicated coconut
1/2 cup sugar

1. Mix water roux ingredients together in a bowl. Cover bowl with cling wrap and store in fridge for 12 hours.
2. In a mixer fitted with a bread hook, add flour, yeast, sugar, egg and water. Start mixing at slow speed for 2 mins. Add salt and continue to knead until dough lifts from the wall of the mixing bowl.
3. Add (1) and continue to knead for 3 mins.
4. Add butter and increasing kneading speed to speed 4.
5. Continue kneading for 15 mins on speed 4 until dough is no longer sticky and does not break when pulled to perform window test.
6. Place dough in a slightly oiled bowl. Cover with cling wrap and leave to proof in a warm area for 45mins.
7. Divide the dough into 10 portions and then roll them into small balls. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes, then roll them into a long oval shape and let rest for another 3 minutes.
8. Fold the relaxed dough pieces in half and cut 4-5 slashes with a bread knife into strips (I didn’t bother with the folding in half, I just cut 4-5 lines on the dough).
9. Lightly whisk together the 3 eggs into a bowl. Stretch the dough and dip the dough in the egg until fully covered.
10. Sprinkle the coconut and sugar onto a dish and place the egg coated strips into sugar and coconut mixture. Cover both sides of the dough with the mixture.
11. Stretch the strips gently and roll in an anticlockwise direction. Do not roll too tightly.
12. Tie the rolled strips into knots. The knots should be loose rather than tight.
13. Place the rolls one a tray and let rise for ~1 hour
14. Bake at 230C for ~8 minutes or until golden in colour

* The dough stretches itself very easily, so you don’t really need to put much effort into pulling the dough
* The original recipe was for much smaller rolls (for a total of 20 rolls) so the amount of coconut/sugar/eggs is a bit too much for the amount I made- you probably want to use a bit less.
* I realise the instructions aren’t all that great, so I tried doing an illustration on paint here. I have not touched paint since primary school…don’t laugh!

In other news, Vondelicious! now has a facebook page!
So if you like my blog, feel free to hop over there and give me a facebook like! Thanks for your support!  🙂

To be honest, I’m not quite sure what it’s for, or what I can do with it, but I figured it might be useful someday since everyone else has one 😉


In Bread, Recipe on
September 11, 2011

Soft Buns

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!!
Hope you all had plenty of fun lighting lanterns and eating mooncakes 😀

I was originally going to write about some snowskin mooncakes I made a two days ago……..

Unfortunately, they all got gobbled up before I had the chance to take photos. (they were that good) Don’t worry- I’ll be making them again very soon!!

Instead, I’ll tell you about something not as sweet, but equally as good!

It’s been a while since I’ve baked bread, so when I saw these extremely soft buns on Shirley’s blog, I couldn’t wait to make them. I’d been wondering why the buns I bought from Asian bakeries were always soft wrinkly whilst the ones which came out of my oven, though soft, always remained unwrinkly- call me strange, but I think wrinkly buns are beautiful! Better still, the recipe was was simple, consisting only of a quick roux to be made the night before- perfect for someone in a lazy mood 🙂

I wanted to keep my buns simple, so I just twisted them into a knot, as I’d seen in one of my cookbooks (though mine didn’t turn out quite as pretty). The buns turned out very soft, as I’d expected and were especially good straight out of the oven.

I think I’m starting to get hooked on bread baking again!!


Soft Buns

Recipe from Køkken69

Water Roux
50g Bread Flour
75g Boiling water

Bread Dough
6gm Active Dry East
160gm Bread Flour
40gm Plain Flour
50gm Sugar
2gm Salt
50gm Water
1 Egg
40gm Butter

1. Mix water roux ingredients together in a bowl. Cover bowl with cling wrap and store in fridge for 12 hours.
2. In a mixer fitted with a bread hook, add flour, yeast, sugar, egg and water. Start mixing at slow speed for 2 mins. Add salt and continue to knead until dough lifts from the wall of the mixing bowl.
3. Add (1) and continue to knead for 3 mins.
4. Add butter and increasing kneading speed to speed 4.
5. Continue kneading for 15 mins on speed 4 until dough is no longer sticky and does not break when pulled to perform window test.
6. Place dough in a slightly oiled bowl. Cover with cling wrap and leave to proof in a warm area for 45mins.
7. With lightly floured hands and table top, knead (6) to form a smooth round ball. Divide dough into 12 balls – about 40g each.
8. Roll each small ball into a round ball and leave to proof for 10mins. Shape into a knot (or whatever you want to shape it into!) then leave to proof for 1 hour.
9. Brush with egg white and decorate.
10. Bake at 185C for 8-10mins until brown. Leave to cool.

* I made mine in my bread machine, but I’ll point out that if you do, you should put the roux before the dough forms- bread machines do a terrible job of incorporating wet things into dry doughs. It took mine almost the whole of the kneading cycle to knead the roux in!

In Bread, Recipe on
March 18, 2011

Cinnamon Rolls

Uni has been going okay, though, as you might’ve been able to tell through my lack of posting, it’s been very busy.

And it’s been putting my mind into a slightly nervous state.

I’m disliking the responsibility of having to find out and remember dates of quizzes and due dates for assignments- especially as there are so many to remember in addition all the other things I should be doing everyday. My travel strips off a huge chunk of my day, so midnight always arrives much too early, leaving me very agitated as I’m always worrying there’s something important I should have done.

I’d like to think that I’m a very positive and carefree person, but I’m starting to see that subconsciously I’m quite a worry wart- as my mother often tells me. When I caught the bus to uni for the first time, I checked the same timetable (for the exact same bus) countless times, starting from a week before the trip right up until the morning of the trip. In the first week of uni, I found myself looking at my timetable, more than hourly, eventhough I’d actually memorised all the classes off by heart, as well as the location and the routes to each of the buildings. And often checking once more before entering the room- just incase I’d misread.

I know all this worrying and checking is stupid, pointless and unneccesary (and I could probably construct a pretty convincing argument as to why) but it happens and I’m sure it’ll gradually decrease as I get used to uni- I don’t check my bus or uni timetable anymore!

Anyways, here’s something a lot more interesting than my life at the moment- cinnamon rolls! I’ve never actually had cinnamon rolls before- so I was very surprised at how good they tasted! The buns were extremely soft- probably one of the softest buns I’ve ever made (though this probably had something to do with the fact that I accidently added more water than I was supposed to) and so delicious I almost couldn’t stop myself from eating it all in one go!

Oh. And if you were wondering, this was made with a recipe which I reread a billion times before and during the making of it! You know. Just incase I misread something very impmortant 😉

Cinnamon Rolls

recipe from Pioneer Woman via A Southern Grace

2 cups milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
4 cups + 1/2 cup flour, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon (scant) baking soda
1/2 teaspoon (heaping) baking powder

1/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
4 tablespoons ground cinnamon

4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon maple flavoring
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons brewed coffee
pinch of salt

Make ahead: Combine milk, 1/2 cup sugar and oil in a large pot over medium heat. Heat, stirring to dissolve sugar, until just before boiling. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for about an hour or until lukewarm (between 105° – 115°F; use a thermometer to check). Sprinkle the yeast into the warm milk mixture and allow to sit for a few minutes. Add 4 cups of flour and stir together until a sticky dough forms. Cover loosely with a kitchen towel and let rise somewhere warm for about an hour. In a small bowl, whisk together remaining 1/2 cup of flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to dough and combine thoroughly to form an elastic dough. Spray the inside of a large bowl with cooking spray. Put dough in the bowl, cover tightly, and store in the refrigerator overnight, or up to a day.

Assembly: Spray 3 9-inch round cake pans with cooking spray. Generously flour a clean, dry surface. Place half the dough on the floured surface and using a rolling pin, roll out into a large rectangle. Gently spread 1/2 cup of softened butter over the dough with a butter knife. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of cinnamon and 1/2 cup of sugar over the buttered dough.

Starting on the longer side of the rectangle, roll dough in a tight spiral toward the other end and pinch the seam shut. Slide a strand of dental floss under the rolled dough 1-1½ inches from the end. Cross the ends of the floss over the top of the roll and pull in opposite directions, slicing off a section of dough. Repeat with the rest of the dough, placing buns in the prepared pan. You will have space between the buns.

Repeat with the second half of the dough. (If you only want to make one batch of buns, you can tightly wrap and freeze the other half at this point. In that case, use half the amount of the ingredients for the glaze.)

Set aside to rise for 30-45 minutes. Bake in 350°F oven for 15-18 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.

Make glaze: Mix together all ingredients and stir well until smooth. It should be thick but pourable. Taste and adjust as needed. Generously drizzle over the warm rolls.

Note: I didn’t make the glaze…which is why my rolls look so bare at the top!

In Bread, Recipe on
July 5, 2010

Coconut roll buns

We’ve come to another school holiday again- another one of these short two week holidays which pass so quickly that by the end of it no one really remembers doing anything important. This holiday, however, is supposed to be slightly different as we have trials coming up shortly after we return to school- I think there’s an expectation that we spend most of it studying *shiver*. Infact, yesterday, our principal even advised us to balance our study with 3 or 4 days of relaxation (or no studying)

I’ll be lucky if I even get 2 days of studying done.

Which will inevitably end up with me staying at home on the last day of the holidays trying to finish whatever homework was set, wishing that I’d done it before so that I wouldn’t have to stay up til midnight doing it. It happens every time =]

It’s funny how it only seems like a couple of weeks ago that we started off this term. I still remember sitting in front of the computer, and writing out my Cocktail Buns post after school a couple of months ago, excited about all the recipes I’d try during the holidays and all the activities I’d planned to do. And now, I’m sitting here doing almost the same thing .

Time plays funny tricks on me though- whilst it has flown by incredibly quickly, at times it passes painstakingly slowly. Take yesterday for instance, when I was sitting in my physics class, slowly counting the last 7 minutes until I could go home. Those 7 minutes felt so long! Not that I should be complaining- I got to leave school 2 hours earlier than everyone else =]

But then again, time plays funny tricks on me all the time- in the kitchen, twenty minutes passes in a flash when I’m whipping up a cake batter, but seems to take forever whilst waiting for a cake to cool. Which is why I love baking things which can be eaten (almost) straight from the oven- even if they burn my tongue =] I guess that’s one of the reasons I love baking bread.

There’s still so much for me to learn when it comes to bread baking, (and baking in general) so it was about time I tried something new with bread. Not simply a new recipe, but a new technique, known as the water roux method. Instead of throwing all the ingredients together, this requires the flour to be cooked in water to form a paste to be added to the dough. Whilst this doesn’t sound too exciting, it seemed more fun than the normal method, and I’d read that it produces a very soft and fluffy bun too!


I love the versatility of Asian bread dough- it’s amazing how one simple bread dough can be made into a billion different types of buns, each so different from one another. Infact, so different that I once thought that each type of bun used a different dough altogether! I was shocked when I first bought a book on Asian breads, to find that out of the hundred or so recipes in there, that they all used the same bread dough recipe! For my first attempt at this dough, I thought I’d keep it simple and make my favourite- coconut roll buns.

When we first saw these buns at an Asian bakery, my mum told me of how she used to love to eat them when she was young. The coconut buns sold in bakeries in Hong Kong were much larger (and cheaper) than these ones in Sydney and unravelling such a large bun was not only fun but extremely satisfying. Unfortunately, coconut buns of such size are nowhere to be found in Sydney but a smaller, ‘standard’ sized version can be found in most Hong Kong style bakeries, as all the breads are usually the same size. The filling is much like that of a cocktail bun, only less buttery but tastes just as good. I’ve also found that they taste best after a little heating up in the toaster- drying up the coconut a little bit and giving the bun a little crunchiness on the crust!


Since I couldn’t find any large coconut roll buns here, I decided to make jumbo sized buns with this bread dough. The dough was not too difficult to make, although heating the roux up to 65 degrees was a little more difficult that I thought it’d be because it’s hard to mix with a spoon, hold a thermometer and read it at the same time. And then I accidentally turned off the heat when it was 60 degrees so I had to start again (I don’t actually think it would have made a difference though). The dough turned out too wet and I ended up hand kneading it for half the time, to get the right stickiness (which took forever….)

In the end, I forgot about making huge coconut buns, which may have been easier to shape than these ones because I rolled the dough out too big so I had to flatter them with my palm, which is why the ends stick out (woops =P)


But that’s okay because when I took these out of them oven, they didn’t look too bad- and they smelt delicious! (but then again anything with coconut in it smells delicious) And then, when we pulled apart these buns, still hot (of course), we were pleasantly surprised to find that not only did they taste just like the coconut buns from Asian bakeries, they tasted even better because they were hot soft and fluffy too! They were definitely the softest buns I’ve ever made, and are seriously addictive- we ate almost half the batch straight away (I only made 8 though) despite the fact that dinner was almost ready……


Hong Kong Style Coconut Roll

Recipe from Hong Kong Breads by Yau Yung Ling
Dough recipe from Corner Cafe

375g bread flour
100g plain flour
35g milk powder
75g caster sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 sachet (7g or 2 1/2 tsp) instant dry yeast
1 egg, lightly beaten
150ml (approx.) lukewarm water, adjust as necessary
40g butter, cubed


25g (just under 2 tbsp) bread flour
125ml (1/2 cup) water

84g coconut shreds
2g melted
56g sugar
¼ egg
Some vanilla essence (I used a drop)

Some plum jam/butter

1. To make the roux, mix together the flour and the water and heat over medium heat until it reaches 65 degrees celcius. Turn the heat off and leave to cool until lukewarm
2. To make the dough, mix together all the dry ingredients and make a well in the middle of the mixture. Add the egg and the water roux and mix. Add the water until a soft dough it formed and then knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic (~10 min) Knead in the butter until it is incorporated. If making it in a breadmachine, put in all the water and dry ingredients and let it knead for a while. Add the water roux and let it knead, adding water or flour as necessary. Add the butter when the dough becomes smooth (~10minutes). For more detailed instructions, go to Corner Cafe
3. Place the dough in a warm spot to rise until double its size (~1 hour)
4. To make the filling, mix all ingredients (except egg) together
5. Divide the dough into 4 equal portions and roll one portion into a rectangle. You can roll the rectangle into as long as you want but don’t let the width exceed 15cm (or else it will tuen out the wrong size). Brush some egg and spread a quater of he filling on top, roll the dough up like a swiss roll and cut into four pieces (like pinwheels, I guess). If you accidentally rolled it too wide, you can try flattening the dough with your palm- just press down! Repeat with the other 3 portions of dough. You should end up with 16 buns
6. Place on a baking tray and cover with cling wrap. Let rise in a warm place for about 1 hour or until double in size (mine took about 2.5 hours….)
7. Brush the top with egg wash and bake at 180oC for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Brush the hot buns with jam or butter immediately after baking.

In Bread, Recipe on
May 20, 2010

Kneaded with love…..

I’m not a morning person. I like to wake up as late as I possibly can- in the holidays and on weekends, this usually means at least 10 or 11am in the morning. I am barely awake during my first few classes at school in the morning and on days when I don’t have lessons in the morning, I’d much rather sleep for an extra hour than get to school to do some ‘productive’ work. But on this particular day, I was awake (only just) and in the kitchen at 8am. It was mothers day. ♥

I’d spent come time considering what to make my mother for mothers day- perhaps a cake? Cookies? A tart? A dessert? Or even dinner? As much as I loved the idea of cooking dinner for my mother, I knew that it definitely would not work for one reason: I have close to no experience in cooking. This would then mean is would spend three hours or so in the kitchen, making a complete mess, which would ultimately result in my mum cleaning up- and definitely not feeling very happy. I guess my cooking adventures could wait for another day.

I wanted to make something different- not something I’d made before and not another cake so I settled on something simple which I know she would like, and something which I’d been itching to try for a while now: raisin bread. But more than that, I wanted to keep it a secret, I wanted her to wake up to the smell of fresh, sweet bread baking in the oven and to serve hot, fluffy, soft bread for breakfast. Which shouldn’t have been such a hard thing- she wakes up even later than I usually do!

But surprises in our family never quite work out. For example, once, I decided to make a card for mother’s day. I’d put glitter glue on it so I had to put it in my cupboard to dry- on the exact same day my mother decided to look for something in that cupboard! Then there was the time I tried to make crème caramel whilst my parents were out shopping (actually, I was supposed to be home, studying for a test the next day) only my caramel burnt and my parents came home to a house which smelt like burnt caramel. And had to help me clean up all the mess I’d made.

This time, I was determined to make it work- I’d left enough time for the bread to rise and to bake. My bread machine is awfully loud so to make the process quiet enough so my mum would not suspect anything (no, waking up at 8 is not sus at all……) I decided to try hand kneading, for the first time. Although I love kneading, my hands get tired and then I get lazy so I usually spend ten minutes kneading the dough and throw the dough in the bread machine to knead for the next 20 minutes or so. This probably has the same effect as letting the bread machine do all the work, but I can’t let the machine have all the fun!

I’d also chosen a recipe which used a sponge dough- that is, a mixture of flour, water and yeast which is proved overnight. Apparently, this produces a softer bread than the straight method. I’d made the sponge dough night before, and didn’t bother putting it in the fridge, because of the cold weather- by the morning it had only doubled in size. I wasn’t sure of how long I needed to knead the dough since I’d never done it before, but I thought that 40 minutes should be enough. The dough was wet when I started kneading, but after about 15 minutes, it started to become dry and I kept on having to add water- I think I’m starting to understand the dough a little better! By 40 minutes, the dough didn’t feel quite stretchy enough, and didn’t pass the ‘window pane test’ but I was scared that I wouldn’t have enough time for the proving so I kneaded intensely for the next five minutes and then left it to prove. I hadn’t considered that the cold weather would slow the rate of rise so much, even when I put it in the sun light so I ended up needing an hour and a half for the second prove. By then, it was past 11. Much to my disappointment, my mother had woken up and dressed up ready for an early yum cha (to avoid the midday crowds) so I had to tell her not to leave yet, as the bread was about to go in the oven. I told you, surprises don’t work in our household!

We had to wait another half an hour for the bread to finish baking but the wait was definitely worth it! The bread turned out very soft and fluffy and the raisins in it were surprisingly delicious! The bread was slightly crumbly though, which I think may be because I didn’t knead it enough and I perhaps also because the sponge dough was stiff. It still turned out better than most straight dough breads I’d made, and was delicious straight out of the oven. We had no trouble finishing it straight away between the three of us (although I’m pretty sure I ate most of it….) since my sister hates raisin bread

Unfortunately, my parents ended up having to wait for more than an hour for yum cha, but I’m sure it was definitely worth it!!

Golden Crown Raisin Bread

From Baking Code (by Alex Goh)via Smallsmallbaker
note: I actually halved the recipe, and it worked perfectly with a 20cm pan….

Overnight sponge dough:

100g bread flour
60g water (room temperature)
1/4 tsp instant yeast

1. Mix the instant yeast with 20g of water until well-blended.
2. Add in the remaining ingredients and knead to form a dough.
3. Let it proof for 30 minutes.
4. Wrap with cling film and keep in the refrigerator overnight or up to 48 hours.

Golden Crown Raisin Bread

Ingredients A:
400g bread flour
100g plain flour
20g milk powder
65g sugar
6g salt
10g instant yeast

Ingredients B:
100g overnight sponge dough

Ingredients C:
2 cold eggs
180g cold water

Ingredients D:
90g butter

Ingredients E:
220g raisins

1. Mix ingredients A until well-blended. Add in ingredients B and ingredients C, mix to form a dough.
2. Add in ingredients D, mix to form a smooth and elastic dough.
3. Add in ingredients E, mix until well-blended.
4. Cover it with cling film. Allow it to proof for 50 minutes.
5. Divide it into 40g each. Mould it round. Place 8 pieces of dough around the side of a greased 20cm round pan, place a 60g dough in the centre. Allow it to proof for 50 minutes.
6. Egg wash the surface and bake it at 180 deg C for 20 minutes. (I also brushed honey over the buns 5 minutes before they were done)