Cinnamon buns

I saw this recipe for cinnamon buns on the Guardian’s website, and immediately added them to my to-bake list. Today I got around to actually baking them.

The dough rose spectacularly in the bowl while rising, doubling in size in about 40 minutes. I added about 80g of raisins to the dough to make them a little more like Chelsea buns (if I’m honest, I thought the recipe included raisins and was surprised when I saw that it didn’t). I used a mix of soft-brown and molasses sugar to mimic the soft-dark-brown sugar called for as that’s what I had. My flatmate will enjoy the left over Ryvita slices.

My rolled up log made 12 buns, so I put 9 into a 25cm square tin, and the remaining three into the bottom of a 2lb loaf tin. After brushing them with the egg wash I sprinkled over some pearl sugar, and popped them in the oven at 200C (fan assisted). After about 5 minutes I thought they were browning too quickly, so I turned off the fan. After another 5 minutes they were already the colour above, so I covered them with foil, turned down to 180C and gave them another 10 minutes before taking them out. I’ve tested my oven’s temperature, and it doesn’t run hot, but I wonder if the top elements are just too strong? A lot of stuff I make tends to brown/burn quickly.

The 3 buns I put in the loaf tin were the runts of the litter, but they were good for testing without spoiling the photo! The crumb is lovely and soft, and they’ve risen very well. The cardamom flavour (I used seeds from three pods) is certainly the strongest, but it’s still subtle, and there’s a background hint of lemon. I wouldn’t know they had cinnamon in though. To my mind they’re a little bland; I’m glad I put in the raisins but some more spices wouldn’t have gone amiss. Perhaps I’m trying to turn these into sticky Chelsea buns, which they’re not. You could certainly eat a few of these in one go without feeling ill, unlike a Chelsea bun.

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