Chinese language Bakery Coconut Buns (椰絲包)

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Chinese bakery-inspired coconut buns

Thanks to Bob’s Purple Mill for sponsoring this submit!

This Chinese language bakery-inspired coconut bun recipe has been a very long time within the making. My preliminary inspiration got here from a sliced coconut bread that Mama Lin used to purchase from Chinese language bakeries. The bread was like Japanese milk bread with ribbons of candy coconut operating inside and on prime of the loaf. It was one in all my favourite treats and I wished to recreate that nostalgia at house. 

Nonetheless, making an attempt to develop a recipe for that bread has confirmed to be harder that I imagined. Though I baked one loaf efficiently, I haven’t been in a position to replicate that success. The loaves always cave inwards in the course of the cooling course of, most likely from the load of the filling.

For now, that recipe is on the again burner. As a substitute, I reconceptualized the coconut bread and turned it into 6 twisted coconut buns. The buns ship plenty of aromatic taste with out being too candy. The bread has hints of milky taste. You additionally get coconut taste from Bob’s Purple Mill’s Unsweetened Shredded Coconut and wealthy vanilla notes from vanilla bean paste. 

One fast observe earlier than I get to the recipe: these coconut buns usually are not the identical as Chinese language cocktail buns (雞尾包). The filling in cocktail buns are normally extra moist and candy. Additionally, they normally don’t have vanilla taste.

Twisted Coconut Buns with Bob's Red Mill

HOW TO MAKE COCONUT BUNS

INGREDIENTS FOR THE DOUGH

For the dough, you’ll want Bob’s Purple Mill’s Artisan Bread Flour. If you’re accustomed to my Asian bread recipes, you’ll know the way a lot I really like utilizing Bob’s Purple Mill’s flour for my bakes. The feel of my breads are persistently good once I use Bob’s Purple Mill’s flours. Furthermore, their flours are normally simply accessible in grocery shops. Listed here are a number of different bread recipes that I developed utilizing Bob’s Purple Mill flours: Japanese milk bread, pineapple buns (bolo bao), and baked scallion bread

Along with bread flour, you’ll want complete milk, sugar, yeast, powdered milk, melted unsalted butter, and an egg. I want complete milk as a result of it offers the bread richer taste and the fats content material helps make the bread comfortable. The powdered milk enhances the milky taste of the bread. In my different bread recipes, I’ve used condensed milk as a substitute of powdered milk and sugar. Many individuals have requested me for a dough recipe that doesn’t use condensed milk. That’s why I developed this model utilizing powdered milk as a substitute. Plus, leftover powdered milk is less complicated to retailer for a very long time. 

ACTIVATE THE YEAST

Step one in making the dough is activating the yeast. To try this, pour the milk right into a microwave-safe bowl or a measuring cup and warmth on excessive for about 30 seconds. The milk needs to be heat however not scalding sizzling, someplace between 100ºF to 115ºF. In earlier recipes, I mentioned that the milk needs to be between 110ºF to 120ºF. Having baked extra of this fashion of bread, I’ve discovered that it’s okay if the milk is barely cooler.

Activate Yeast

As soon as you warmth the milk, add 35 grams (3 tablespoons) of sugar and the yeast to the warmed milk and stir collectively. Technically, you don’t want to make use of all that sugar to activate the yeast. Nonetheless, I may be forgetful and can omit the remaining sugar afterward if I don’t take care of the sugar directly. Let this milk and yeast combination sit for five minutes. After the resting interval, the yeast develops a skinny foamy layer on the prime (see picture above, proper), which is a sign that the yeast is energetic. For those who don’t see any foaming exercise in any respect, your yeast could have expired.

USING INSTANT YEAST

If you’re utilizing on the spot yeast, you do not want to activate it. In different phrases, you do not want to warmth the milk and blend the yeast with the milk. Merely add the moment yeast together with the opposite substances for the dough into the bowl of your stand mixer. Then, begin mixing and kneading the dough. Be aware that in case you used milk straight out of the fridge, dough won’t rise as excessive as a result of the dough is colder.

Ingredients for dough

MAKE THE DOUGH

When you could have measured and ready all of the substances for the dough, add them into the bowl of your stand mixer. Combine the dough on low till you don’t see any free flour on the edges of the bowl. This could take 30 seconds to 1 minute. For those who begin out utilizing a excessive velocity to combine the flour, the flour will fly out throughout your counter.

Mixed dough around dough hook

Subsequent, enhance the velocity to medium-low and work the dough for 8 minutes. The dough will wrap across the dough hook. As soon as the dough has combined for 8 minutes, it ought to really feel supple and frivolously moist. Nonetheless, the dough shouldn’t stick with your fingers once you squeeze it and let go. 

Despite the fact that I present weighted measurements for the substances, I do know all of us work in several kitchen circumstances, which might have an effect on the hydration ranges of the dough. If the dough feels very sticky once you squeeze it together with your fingers, add one other tablespoon of bread flour and work the flour into the dough. Then check the feel of the dough once more with clear palms. If the dough remains to be very sticky, add one other tablespoon of flour and work it in. Conversely, if the dough is dry (and you may inform as a result of the dough isn’t wrapping across the dough hook persistently), add 1 tablespoon of milk and work it into the dough.  

Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto a floor and knead just a few instances. I don’t normally flour the work floor as a result of the dough doesn’t stick with my palms or the work floor. If the dough remains to be feeling sticky, frivolously mud your work floor and knead the dough a number of instances.  

Dough going through first rise

Form the dough right into a ball and place the dough inside a greased mixing bowl (picture above, left). Cowl the bowl with a moist towel (or a silicone lid) and let it rise in a heat place for about 1 hour, till the dough doubles in measurement (picture above, proper).

A DOUGH WITHOUT TANGZHONG

When you have made my different Asian bread recipes, you’ll know that I typically use tangzhong, a paste fabricated from water and flour heated collectively. Tangzhong offers bread a comfortable and pillowy texture.

After I examined this coconut bun recipe, I observed that the tangzhong-based dough overvalued an excessive amount of in the course of the second rise and whereas the buns baked. Consequently, the twisted knot within the coconut buns would unravel or lose its definition. That’s why I made a decision to omit the tangzhong right here. To make sure that the buns are comfortable, I’ve included ample quantities of fats from the butter and complete milk.

Ingredients for filling

MAKE FILLING

The filling consists of Bob’s Purple Mill’s Unsweetened Shredded Coconut, sugar, floor turmeric, melted unsalted butter, an egg yolk, and vanilla bean paste. I really like the best way the feel of the shredded coconut contrasts with the comfortable texture of the buns. To reinforce the yellow coloration of the filling, I added a hint quantity of floor turmeric to the filling (1/16 teaspoon). Nonetheless, you possibly can omit the turmeric in case you don’t prefer it. I additionally wished a powerful vanilla taste within the buns, so I used vanilla bean paste for the filling. For those who don’t have vanilla bean paste, you should use vanilla extract as a substitute.

After you combine the substances for the filling, chill the filling within the fridge for 20 to 25 minutes. It’ll make the bun shaping course of much less messy later. The filling can harden within the fridge in case you go away the bowl uncovered for an extended interval (over an hour). If it hardens, let the filling sit out at room temperature for 20 minutes or so to melt it barely. You may also cowl the bowl, which helps to maintain the filling from stiffening. 

Stacked baking sheets

PREPARE BAKING SHEETS

Line a big sheet pan (13×18 inches or bigger) with parchment paper. When you have one other baking sheet of the very same measurement, I like to recommend stacking it beneath the lined baking sheet. Once you stack 2 baking sheets of the identical measurement, the edges of the sheets will contact, however there can be a niche between the highest and backside sheets. The hole helps to maintain the bottoms of the buns from overbrowning.

Bottoms of Bao

You may see from this experiment I did with my baked Chinese language BBQ pork buns the distinction the sheet stacking makes. The bun on the left was baked on stacked sheets whereas the one on the correct was baked on a single sheet.

SHAPE THE BUNS (VIDEO DEMONSTRATION IN RECIPE CARD)

Measured out coconut filling

Take the chilled filling and divide it into 6 equal items of about 25 to twenty-eight grams every, about 1 1/2 tablespoons. I normally use a medium cookie scoop to divide the filling. 

Rolling out dough for buns, steps 1 and 2

Punch down the risen dough to take away extra air. Divide the dough into 6 equal items of about 112 to 115 grams every. Form the dough into an oval. Cowl 5 items of dough with a dry towel when you form the primary bun. 

Roll out one piece of dough till you get a rectangle of about 10 to 10.5 inches lengthy and 4 to 4.5 inches extensive. I don’t normally flour the floor earlier than I roll out the dough. After I mud the floor with flour, the dough typically shrinks again as I roll it out, particularly to start with. Nonetheless, when rolling the dough on a naked floor, the dough grips onto the floor simpler and it doesn’t shrink again as simply. 

Adding filling to dough and folding it over

Take 1 piece of the filling and unfold it over half of the rectangle, alongside the size of the rectangle. See picture above, left, for reference.

Fold the aspect of the rectangle with out filling over the half with filling. You must have a protracted and skinny rectangle. The rectangle would possibly look a bit lopsided, however don’t fear an excessive amount of about it. You received’t discover the imbalance when you form the bun right into a knot.

Cutting strips inside dough

Utilizing a knife, make 2 or 3 lengthy cuts contained in the rectangle, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch border alongside the brief aspect of the rectangle uncut. The border ensures that the strips are connected collectively, making the following step simpler. By now, you need to have created 3 or 4 strips contained in the rectangle, relying on what number of cuts you made. 

When testing the recipe, I assumed that the sample of the coconut buns would look extra intricate with 4 strips as a substitute of three. Nonetheless, when you twist the dough and tie it right into a knot, you possibly can barely inform the distinction between the 2 variations. The dough is less complicated to deal with once you make solely 2 cuts contained in the rectangle, however be happy to experiment with each strategies. 

Finishing tying dough into knot

Seize a maintain of the brief ends of the dough and twist it a number of instances. Then tie the twisted dough right into a knot (see the pictures above or the video within the recipe card for reference). Switch the knotted dough onto the lined baking sheet. Proceed shaping the remaining items of dough.

Cowl the knotted buns with a layer of plastic wrap and let the buns rise for an hour, till they double in measurement.

Prepared coconut buns before second rise

BAKE COCONUT BUNS

As soon as the buns are almost achieved rising, preheat the oven to 350ºF. Place an oven rack to the middle place.

Whisk an egg with 1 tablespoon of milk for the egg wash. For those who don’t need to crack open one other egg for the egg wash, you possibly can really use the leftover egg whites reserved from the filling. Skinny out the whites with 1 teaspoon of milk. The buns received’t look as golden as soon as they’re baked, however the whites will add some coloration to the buns.

Gently apply a skinny layer of egg wash over the risen buns. Place the coconut buns within the oven and bake for 22 to 25 minutes, till they’re golden brown on the prime. I prefer to rotate the baking sheet after quarter-hour to make sure even browning.

Coconut buns on cooling rack

Take the coconut buns out of the oven. Allow them to cool on the baking sheet for five minutes earlier than transferring them to a cooling rack. These coconut buns are finest consumed whereas they’re nonetheless just a little heat.

WHAT TO DO WITH LEFTOVER EGG

I normally mix the leftover egg whites and egg from the egg wash. I’ll both scramble them on their very own or use it for fried rice.

Baked Coconut Buns

MAKE AHEAD DIRECTIONS FOR COCONUT BUNS

You can also make the dough and the filling a day forward. Proper after you could have labored the dough within the mixer for 8 minutes, switch the dough to a greased mixing bowl. Then, cowl the bowl with plastic and switch to the fridge to rise in a single day. You DO NOT have to let the dough rise in your counter first. Equally, after you have combined all of the substances for the filling, switch the filling right into a container and refrigerate.

If you find yourself able to make the buns the following day, take the filling out of the fridge and contact it to check the feel. Whether it is rock stable, let it sit in your counter for 25 to half-hour to melt barely. As soon as the filling feels extra malleable, you possibly can take the dough out of the fridge and form the coconut buns. You shouldn’t have to heat up the dough earlier than rolling it out. Nonetheless, in case you discover the items of dough are always shrinking again as you roll them out, let the dough sit for 15 to twenty minutes earlier than persevering with to roll them out. 

STORING AND REHEATING COCONUT BUNS

I normally retailer the baked buns in a container and go away them out on my counter. They need to maintain for two or 3 days. For those who don’t assume you possibly can end the coconut buns inside 2 or 3 days however will devour them inside every week, retailer the coconut  buns within the fridge. If you find yourself able to eat the buns, warmth them within the microwave on excessive for 10 to twenty seconds. That is the simplest method to reheat the coconut buns whereas sustaining their comfortable texture.

CAN I FREEZE THESE BUNS?

Sure. If you wish to maintain the buns for longer than every week, freeze the baked buns and retailer them in a freezer bag. If you find yourself able to warmth them, bake the frozen buns at 350ºF for 10 to 12 minutes. You don’t want to thaw them beforehand.

Coconut Buns

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Servings: 6 buns

Coconut Buns (椰絲包)

Sink your enamel into these pillowy Chinese language bakery-inspired coconut buns. These milky comfortable buns are laced with aromatic ribbons of coconut and vanilla taste.

I typically weigh a lot of the substances (besides salt) with my bread recipes as a result of I discover quantity measurements to be fairly inconsistent. When you have a scale, use it right here! Be aware that the amount measurement of the bread flour is predicated on the spoon-and-sweep technique. Learn extra about it in Be aware 1. Make-ahead and freezer instructions are additionally offered within the notes part.

Prep Time50 minutes

Prepare dinner Time25 minutes

Resting Time2 hrs

Substances

Dough

  • oil for greasing bowl, any impartial flavored oil
  • 175 grams complete milk, 3/4 cup
  • 35 grams sugar, 3 tablespoons
  • 3 grams energetic dry yeast, 1 teaspoon
  • 360 grams bread flour, 3 cups measured with spoon and sweep technique (see observe 1)
  • 5 grams powdered milk, 1 tablespoon
  • 2 grams kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon
  • 55 grams unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 giant egg

Coconut Filling

  • 50 grams unsweetened shredded coconut, 1/2 cup
  • 40 grams sugar, 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1/16 teaspoon floor turmeric (optionally available), (see observe 2)
  • 40 grams unsalted butter, 3 tablespoons, melted
  • 1 egg yolk, from a big egg
  • 6 grams vanilla bean paste, 1 teaspoon, can substitute with vanilla extract

Directions

Make the Dough

  • Frivolously grease a big mixing bowl with oil. Set it apart.

  • In a microwave-safe bowl, warmth the milk within the microwave on excessive for about 30 to 35 seconds. Use a thermometer to verify the temperature of the milk. It needs to be someplace round 100ºF to 115ºF. If the milk is just too sizzling, rapidly whisk the milk and let it cool for a number of minutes.

  • Add the sugar and yeast to the milk. Stir to hydrate the yeast. Let it sit for five minutes when you put together the opposite substances. After 5 minutes, you need to see a layer of froth on the highest (a sign that the yeast is energetic).

  • Within the bowl of a stand mixer, add the bread flour, powdered milk, salt, foamy milk/yeast combination, melted butter, and egg.

  • Match the mixer with the dough hook. Combine the dough on low till you don’t see any free flour on the edges of the bowl. This could take 30 seconds to 1 minute. Then, enhance the velocity to medium-low and work the dough for 8 minutes. The dough ought to really feel supple and moist however not overly sticky. If it is rather sticky, add one other tablespoon of flour and work the flour into the dough. (See observe 4)

  • Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto a floor and knead just a few instances. If the dough is feeling cheesy, frivolously mud the floor with flour and proceed kneading just a few instances.

  • Form the dough right into a ball and place contained in the greased mixing bowl. Cowl the bowl with a moist towel (or a silicone lid) and let it rise in a heat place for about 1 hour, till the dough doubles in measurement.

Make the Filling

  • In a bowl, combine the coconut, sugar, and turmeric. Then, add the melted butter, egg yolk, and vanilla bean paste. Combine every little thing collectively till mixed.

  • Switch the bowl to the fridge to sit back the filling whereas the dough rises (about 20 to half-hour). For those who go away the bowl contained in the fridge uncovered for over an hour, the filling can harden. Both regulate the time or cowl the bowl earlier than refrigerating.

Form the Buns

  • Stack 2 giant baking sheets of the identical measurement (13” x 18” or bigger). Line the highest sheet with parchment paper. Stacking the baking sheets ensures that the bottoms of the buns received’t brown an excessive amount of. (See observe 5 for extra data)

  • Take the chilled filling out of the fridge and divide it into 6 items of about 25 to twenty-eight grams every (about 1 1/2 tablespoons). I normally use a medium cookie scoop and measure out a scant scoopful of filling for every bit.

  • Punch down the dough to launch extra air. Divide the dough into 6 equal items, about 112 to 115 grams every. Form the dough into an oval. Cowl 5 items of dough with a towel when you form the primary bun.

  • Roll out one piece of dough till you get a rectangle of about 10 to 10.5 inches lengthy and 4 to 4.5 inches extensive. I don’t flour the floor earlier than I roll out the dough. This fashion, the dough grips onto the floor as I roll it out with out shrinking again considerably.

  • Take 1 piece of the filling and unfold it over half of the rectangle (alongside the lengthy edge). See pictures within the weblog submit or the video beneath for reference. Decide up the aspect of the dough with out filling and fold it over the half with the filling. You must now have a protracted and skinny rectangle. It’s okay if the rectangle doesn’t look excellent at this stage.

  • Utilizing a knife, make 2 or 3 lengthy cuts contained in the rectangle, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch border alongside the brief aspect of the rectangle uncut. The border ensures that the strips are connected collectively, making the following step simpler. By now, you need to have created 3 or 4 strips contained in the rectangle. It’s as much as you what number of cuts you need to make as I believe the completed buns look very comparable both manner.

  • Seize a maintain of the brief ends of the dough and twist the dough just a few instances. Then tie the dough right into a knot (see video beneath or pictures within the weblog submit for reference).

  • Switch the knotted dough onto the lined baking sheet. I additionally prefer to ensure that among the coconut filling is uncovered by opening up frivolously pulling aside among the layers of the twisted bun. Proceed shaping the remaining items of dough into buns.

  • Cowl the knotted buns with plastic wrap and let the buns rise for an hour, till they double in measurement.

Bake

  • When the second rise is sort of achieved, preheat the oven to 350ºF. Place an oven rack to the middle place.

  • Whisk an egg with a tablespoon of milk. Gently apply a skinny layer of egg wash over the risen buns. (See observe 6 for what to do with leftover eggs).

  • Place the coconut buns within the oven and bake for 22 to 25 minutes, till they’re golden on the prime. I prefer to rotate the baking sheet after quarter-hour to make sure even browning.

  • Take the coconut buns out of the oven. Allow them to cool on the baking sheet for five minutes earlier than transferring them to a cooling rack. These coconut buns are finest consumed whereas they’re nonetheless just a little heat.

Storing Baked Buns

  • I normally retailer the baked buns in a container and go away them out on my counter. They need to maintain for two or 3 days. For those who don’t assume you possibly can end the coconut buns inside 2 or 3 days however will devour them inside every week, retailer the coconut buns within the fridge. If you find yourself able to eat the buns, warmth them within the microwave on excessive for 10 to twenty seconds. That is the simplest method to reheat the coconut buns whereas sustaining their comfortable texture.

  • Freezing: If you wish to maintain the buns for longer than every week, freeze the baked buns and retailer them in a freezer bag. If you find yourself able to warmth them, bake the frozen buns at 350ºF for 10 to 12 minutes. You don’t want to thaw them beforehand.

Video

Notes

  1. Spoon-and-sweep technique of measuring flour: For those who don’t have a scale, use a fork to fluff up the flour within the bag or container. Then, use a spoon to scoop flour into the measuring cup, till it’s overflowing with flour. DO NOT faucet the measuring cup on the counter to attempt to get extra flour into the measuring cup. Sweep the highest of the measuring cup with a knife to stage the flour. Lastly, switch the flour to the bowl of the stand mixer.
  2. To reinforce the yellow coloration of the filling, I added a hint quantity of floor turmeric to the filling. Nonetheless, you possibly can omit the turmeric in case you don’t prefer it.
  3. For those who don’t need to crack open one other egg for the egg wash, you possibly can really use the leftover egg whites reserved from the filling. Skinny out the whites with 1 teaspoon (as a substitute of 1 tablespoon) of milk. The buns received’t look as golden as soon as they’re baked, however the whites will add some coloration to the buns.
  4. Despite the fact that I present weighted measurements for the substances, I do know all of us work in several kitchen circumstances, which might have an effect on the hydration ranges of the dough. If the dough feels very sticky once you squeeze it together with your fingers, add one other tablespoon of bread flour and work the flour into the dough. Then check the feel of the dough once more with clear palms. If the dough remains to be very sticky, add one other tablespoon of flour and work it in. Conversely, if the dough is dry (and you may inform as a result of the dough isn’t wrapping across the dough hook persistently), add 1 tablespoon of milk and work it into the dough.
  5. When you have one other baking sheet of the very same measurement, I like to recommend stacking it beneath the lined baking sheet. Once you stack 2 baking sheets of the identical measurement, the rim of the sheets will contact, however there can be a niche between the highest and backside sheets. The hole helps to maintain the buns from over-browning on the backside.
  6. I normally mix the leftover egg whites and egg from the egg wash. I’ll both scramble them on their very own or use it for fried rice.

Diet

Serving: 1bun | Energy: 471kcal | Carbohydrates: 60.8g | Protein: 10.6g | Fats: 21g | Saturated Fats: 13.7g | Ldl cholesterol: 96mg | Sodium: 162mg | Fiber: 2.7g | Sugar: 15.5g

Did you make this recipe?Tag @hellolisalin or go away a star score and touch upon the weblog!

© Lisa Lin

Disclosure: This submit was sponsored by Bob’s Purple Mill! To be taught extra about their merchandise and to get extra recipe inspiration, comply with them on Instagram or Fb.



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