Monday, September 28, 2009

Fresh From the Oven - Stuffed Chicken Buns

The September Challenge from Fresh From the Oven was hosted by Ria Mathew from Ria's Collection. Thanks Ria for a lovely challenge and delicious recipe!!! Ria has chosen her family's favorite - a Stuffed Bun recipe for the challenge. It is basically a bun stuffed with a Spicy Indian Chicken filling. For vegetarian buns, you can substitute a veggie* filling of your choice. Ria and her mom did a TV show recently (it's imbedded in her blog) and this was the recipe that her mom demonstrated. Ria says the recipe has been made over and over again in her home and is a winner every time.

(Yields 12 buns)

For the dough:


Dry yeast-1 tbsp
Warm water-2tbsp
Milk-1/2 cup
Salt to taste
Oil-1/2 cup
All purpose flour-2 cups
Sugar-1/4 cup
Egg-1, beaten
Egg white-1,for egg wash (I used egg yolk)
White sesame seeds for sprinkling (I have used black sesame seeds)


Dissolve the yeast in warm water with 1/2tbsp sugar and 1/2 tbsp of all purpose flour. Leave aside for 10 minutes. Boil the milk and allow to cool down till it is warm to touch. Add sugar, oil and salt. Mix well with a wooden spoon till the sugar dissolves and add 1 cup flour and mix to a smooth paste. Add the beaten egg, yeast and mix. Add the remaining flour and mix well till it forms a smooth dough. Knead continuosly for 10 mins (I kneaded with my hands as it is very therapeutic but you can also use a mixer). Let it rest till it doubles in volume.

Punch down the dough lightly using your palm and divide them equally. Flatten them into small discs and fill them with 1 tbsp of the filling. Re-shape them into a ball. Sprinkle the top with sesame seeds. Let it prove for another 20 mins.

Bake them in a pre-heated oven at 200 degrees for 10 mins. When it starts to brown, give them an egg wash using 1 slightly beaten egg white (I cooked then for a further 10 minutes). Keep a check on the baking time as each oven temperature and time varies. Some have a mind of their own.

Spicy Indian chicken filling


Boneless chicken-200g, boiled and shredded (I used chicken mince fried with a little oil)
Onions - 4 big, finely chopped ( I used 1 very large onion)
Ginger garlic paste-1 tbsp (optional - I didn't use it))
Chilli powder-1/2 -1tbsp (depending on your spice level)
Coriander powder-1/2 tbsp (optional - I used a large handful of chopped Italian Parsley)
Salt to taste
Oil-3 tbsp


Heat oil, add the ginger garlic paste and saute till it gives out a nice aroma.
Add the onions. Saute them till soft and transparent.
Reduce the heat and add the powders and mix well for 2 mins.
Add the shredded chicken and mix well (I cooked the chicken mince until brown and well done). Remove from the stove and let it cool. Use it for filling the dough.

*You can substitute chicken for paneer/cottage cheese, potatoes , mushrooms etc.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Richard Bertinet's Donuts (Beignets) with Fresh Home-made Raspberry Jam

I've just made the most beautiful tasting donuts ever from Richard Bertinet's book 'Dough - Simple Contemporary Bread'. Even though they have been deep fried, they are not greasy. They are light and tender more like a brioche with a lovely crisp crust. I've dusted them with cinnamon sugar and piped home-made raspberry jam into the centers (thanks Kathy, the raspberry jam is sublime!!!).


Quantity: Makes 30 doughnuts (or make 15 and a fruit loaf)
Preparation: 20 minutes;
Resting: 1 hour
Proving: 15 minutes
Frying: 15 minutes

250 grams full-cream milk
15 grams fresh yeast (or 7 grams dried)
500 grams strong bread (baker's) flour
60 grams unsalted butter (room temperature)
40 grams castor (superfine) sugar
10 grams salt (or to taste)
2 large eggs

Extra flour for dusting
Peanut (ground oil) for deep frying

250 grams castor sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon mixed together
Homemade Raspberry Jam

Gently warm the milk (either in a pot on the stove or in the microwave for 1 & 1/2 minutes on full power) to body temperature.

Crumble the fresh yeast into the flour with your fingertips as if you were making a crumble (Richard Bertinet has a unique kneading technique called the French fold that can take approximately 5 to 10 minutes. You can view his online video at the Gourmet Webpage). If using dry yeast, just mix in with the flour.

If mixing by hand, rub in the butter, then add the sugar and salt, then add the beaten egg and milk. Knead for approximately 10 to 12 minutes or until you have a nice smooth elastic ball of dough.

If using a mixer, switch it on to the slowest speed, add sugar, salt, egg and milk and mix for 2 minutes, then turn the speed up to the next lowest speed and mix for 6 to 7 minutes until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.

Place into a bowl that has been floured, cover with a tea towel and leave in a draught free place for approximately 1 hour or until doubled in volume.

Using the rounded end of your scraper, turn out the dough on to a slightly floured work surface and divide into 30 pieces (about 30 grams each) and then roll in to tight balls. Grease and lightly flour a baking tray with flour. Leaving space between them so they don't touch when risen, place the doughnuts on the tray with the seam side down. Dust them lightly with flour. Cover with a tea towel and let them prove until nearly doubled in size, approximately 45 minutes.

Using a saucepan deep enough to deep fry, heat the oil over medium heat to 180˚C (360˚F). Carefully and gently lift the first doughnut into the oil. It should sizzle straight away. Add up to 5 doughnuts at a time. Fry for approximately 30 to 45 seconds until they start to colour and then turn them over and fry the other side for approximately the same time. Remove the doughnuts and drain on kitchen towel. Let them cool. Roll in the cinnamon castor sugar. Using a piping bag and nozzle, make a small hole in each doughnut and pipe raspberry jam in to the centre of the doughnut.

If you don't dust them, they will also keep for a few days in the fridge (but they don't usually last that long and will disappear before your eyes).

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Macarons - Yes! we definitely have feet.

'J' and I had another Macaron Day using the Italian Meringue method. It just keeps getting better!!!!!

Chocolate Mint Macarons

Passionfruit macarons

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Macarons (or Macawrongs and Macarights)

'J' 'A' 'C' 'K' and the all day macaron marathon.

To cut a long story short - J & A & C & K spent a day in the kitchen making macarons.

Our first feet (although somewhat dainty)!!!

It takes a bit of patience. Piping takes some practice. Practice makes perfect.
It gradually gets better!!!

Getting there. The feet are getting bigger!!!

Chocolate Macawrongs

Further attempts by 'J' have produced some astounding macarights - adapted from Nigella Lawon's Pistachio Macarons - "How to be a Domestic Goddess"

J's chocolate macarights

Twisting C's citrus macarights together.

Keep mixing, girls!!!