I am definitely no great chef sharing my secrets, merely someone jotting down and sharing some of the lessons that I have learnt along the way. My success, my disasters, yummies, yuckies and everything in between. Most of the time (all the time would be more accurate) simple stuff to feed my loved ones, good enough to warm their hearts and stomachs . It would be a bonus if some of my experiences have been inspiring to those who cared to dropped by.
No big achievements, small steps maybe. Good enough for our dining table to be laid with a bigger variety and yummier food too, perhaps :) I am comforted by the fact that the family is consuming a whole lot more homemade stuff than before. Not necessarily yummier but it comes with a lot more than money can buy, that bit I am proud of.
Little one suggested that I should have a post to commemorate it. He suggested that I make something in the shape of no. 1, to which I replied with a big No! I didn't make anything special but I thought I would share this recipe for 'Polo' Bun which I think by far is the best 'Polo' bun that I have made.
If you have not heard of it, 'Polo' Buns are butter buns made famous in Hong Kong, the word 'Polo' means pineapple in Cantonese, hence 'Polo' in inverted comas :) Contrary to the name, they do not have pineapples in them but a layer of crust like dough laid on the surface of the buns with crisscross patterns drawn on them, making them look like pineapples.
They say, good things happen once in a blue moon. I had this book with me for sometime already but somehow this recipe or even its picture didn't catch my eye before this. Not that I have not made Polo buns prior to this. I was captivated by its picture this time around. I took a look at the recipe and noticed that the recipe for the top crust layer was different from those that I have read or followed. As for the bun, the recipe given was a straight dough method. I preferred buns made using the sponge dough method (from the same book), so I followed my heart.
Firstly, I loved how they turned out. They looked very pretty with nice cracks on the top layer exposing a nice brown tint from the chocolate flavoured bun below (it would be prettier if the shade was a little darker). No crisscrossing needed, the veins were au naturale. Round and bumpy they are too, aren't they? The buns? Soft and spongy! The were delightful when they were out from the oven, the crispy crust went very well with the buns. I seriously think God had a hand in this, maybe it's His way of encouraging me to continue this journey!
Source : Bread Magic by Alan Ooi (Chocolate Polo Bun) with variations
- 200g high protein flour
- 1tsp instant yeast
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 120ml water
- 150g high protein flour
- 60g sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp milk powder
- 1 tsp instant yeast
- 1 egg
- 50g butter
- Combine ingredients Bread-A and place in mixer. Beat for 2 minutes until soft dough is formed. Leave dough in big bowl, cover for 2 hours to slow proof.
- After 2 hours, put ingredients Bread-B in a mixer. Add in fermented dough from step 1 and beat for 5 minutes. If dough appears too dry, drizzle in a bit of water. Add in butter of ingredient Bread-C and beat further for 3 minutes until dough has a smooth and elastic touch.
- Leave dough in a big bowl, covered with a damp cloth for 20-30 minutes rest.
I used my breadmaker to do step 2 and 3. I waited until the dough double its bulk.
Toppings - A
- 20g shortening
- 50g salted butter
- 70g icing sugar
- 1 large egg
- 10g milk powder
- 170g plain flour
- Beat Toppings-A till softened, add in Toppings-B, beat well.
- Mix in Toppings-C.
- Roll toppings dough into flat sheet.
- Keep refrigerated for easier handling.
- Mould bread dough into small balls of 35g each. Let it rest for 10 minutes.
- Slightly flatten each ball of dough into a round.
- Wrap some toppings into the ball of dough (My own step)
- Take some toppings (mold into small round of approximately 20g) in one hand and bread dough in another.
- Take some toppings in one hand and bread dough on another. Push bread dough into toppings from outside to inside by turning the palm of the hand with the toppings until 3/4 of the dough is placed inside the toppings. (This step gives well wrapped and rounded buns).
- Let dough rise for another 30 minutes.
- Egg wash and bake in preheated oven at 180C for 12-15 minutes.