While perusing the interwebs one afternoon, Selma stumbled across this amazing recipe for Sweet Austrian Yeast Bread from another blog, Li’l Vienna, that looked absolutely amazing. Because we love anything that has to do with bread in general, Selma decided to try this recipe out for herself. The original recipe calls for apricot jam but we decided to do half and half with apricot and raspberry. Of course, you can sub the apricot jam with any jam you like. This bread is sooo good you can even use it as a base for other things like char siu bao’s (bbq pork buns) or even those little Asian hotdog buns!
What you’ll need:
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons (150 ml) warm milk
- 1 ½ teaspoons (5 g) active dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons (40 g) sugar
- 1 large egg
- 5 ½ tablespoons (77g) melted butter
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 ½ cups (325 g) all-purpose flour
- About 5 tablespoons apricot jam (or any other jam)
- 2 tablespoons melted butter for the pan
- Confectionary (powdered) sugar for dusting and finishing touches
Note: If you don’t have a food scale but love to bake, I would highly recommend investing in one. We got this one from Amazon and it works great! According to Selma, it helps you accurately measure out ingredients and comes in handy when recipes are only listed in grams.
Step 1: If your milk is cold, bring it up to temperature by microwaving it for a few seconds at a time. Make sure it’s not too hot or it will kill your yeast. Anywhere between 95 and 115 degrees F should be fine. Also, measure out your yeast.
Step 2: In a mixing bowl or measuring cup, sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk and set it aside for 10 minutes to allow the yeast to dissolve and work its’ magic.
Step 3: Whisk in the sugar, egg, melted (lightly cooled) butter, vanilla and salt.
Step 4: Stir in about 1 ½ cups (200 g) of the flour to get a thick batter and whisk until no lumps remain. Use a wooden spoon or your hands to gradually stir in the rest of the flour. When all ingredients are uniformly mixed together, form a ball in the center of the bowl. The dough will be sticky, but refrain from adding more flour.
Step 5: Cover the dough and let it rise in a warm room until it has doubled in volume (about 45 min to 1 hour).
Step 6: Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and divide it into 12 equal parts. Keep pieces you don’t need right away covered.
Fold the edges of each piece into the middle a couple of times to get a nice ball with a smooth surface on the bottom.
Step 7: Flatten each ball with your palm to a circle with a diameter of 3 to 3 ½ inch while keeping the center slightly thicker than the edges. If the dough keeps sticking to the surface, add some additional flour.
Step 8: Put 1 teaspoon of jam in the center and wrap the dough around the filling, pinching on all sides to sealing it tightly. Be sure to only use a small amount of filling because if you use too much, they become difficult to seal and will leak everywhere while baking. Not fun.
Step 9: Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a small bowl. Brush a baking pan (we used an oval 11 x 7 inch Le Creuset ceramic pan) with melted butter. Place your rolls one at a time in the bowl with the melted butter and roll them around to ensure they are well coated.
Step 10: Arrange them in your pan so that they are touching but not too tightly packed. They will still rise and expand during the second proofing process. You can also place your extra rolls in a lined muffin tin and bake them separately.
Step 11: Cover the pan and let them proof a second time for about 20-30 minutes in a warm room until they rise and become puffy.
Right before they go in the oven, brush the rolls with a light coat of melted butter so you get that nice golden-brown crust.
Step 12: Bake at 375 °F on the center rack for 20-25 min. When they are golden-brown, remove them from the oven.
Step 13: Let them cool for 5-10 minutes and dust with powdered sugar. Serve warm and enjoy!
The best part about this recipe is that you can fill the rolls with anything you like or even leave them unfilled. They are crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside and have a lightly sweet flavor that works perfectly with any sweet or savory recipe. We can’t wait to try it with Asian bbq pork or even hotdogs!
And with that, happy eating and thanks for reading!
Have any suggestions for this recipe? Feel free to leave a comment below!