Chelsea buns recipe

Tom Aikens
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Chelsea buns recipe

A deliciously authentic Chelsea Bun recipe, designed by chef Tom Aikens to raise awareness for Breast Health International. 

Breast Health International (BHI) recognises that treatment for breast cancer may be a difficult experience in many ways, and its mission is to make this time as easy as possible, without worries about financial concerns.

BHI’s Fund For Living programme was created to help those touched by breast cancer by taking care of the seemingly small things that can make life even more difficult during treatment, including home care, child care or elder spousal care, transportation to/from hospital, mastectomy prosthesis, and wigs. 

At a glance
  • Cuisine English
  • Recipe Type Bread
  • Difficulty Medium
  • Preparation time 45 mins
  • Cooking time 25 mins
  • Serves 8 people
Ingredients
For the dough
  • 500 g (17.6oz) strong bread flour
  • 80 g (2.8oz) caster sugar
  • 80 g (2.8oz) butter
  • 35 g (1.2oz) fresh yeast
  • 250 ml (8.8fl oz) warm milk
  • 6 g (0.2oz) salt
  • 2 egg yolks
For the filling
  • 30 g (1.1oz) unsalted butter melted
  • 1 orange and lemon zest only
  • 80 g (2.8oz) soft brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 100 g (3.5oz) currants
  • 100 g (3.5oz) sultanas
  • 100 g (3.5oz) raisins

Step-by-step

  1. Place the sieved flour, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir until thoroughly combined.
  2. Warm the milk, ½ the sugar and butter in a small saucepan until the butter is melted and the mixture is luke warm, add the yeast and egg yolks and leave for ten minutes.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the yeasted milk. Stir thoroughly with your hands until the contents of the bowl come together as a soft dough.
  4. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead well for 8-10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place the dough into a bowl and leave to rise for approx. one hour or until doubled in size, covered with a warm damp tea towel.
  5. Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll out dough into a rectangle, about 20 x 40cm.
  6. To make the Chelsea Buns: brush the dough in the butter then sprinkle in the brown sugar, the dried fruit, zest and then dust in sieved cinnamon powder.
  7. Press down the long side of the dough rectangle nearest to you by pressing it down onto the work surface with your thumb. Roll the opposite long side of the dough towards you tightly, until the roll is complete and tight. Take a sharp knife and cut this into 5cm high rounds.
  8. Grease a deep baking tray with butter. Place the sliced buns cut side up into the greased baking tray leaving about 1.5cm of space between each one. You want them to be close enough so that when they rise, prove and then bake, they will bake with their sides touching, then they can be pulled apart when cooked. Leave to rise for about 30/45 minutes in a warm place.
  9. When the buns are ready, put them into the oven at 180C and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Check after 15 minutes or so and once risen and baked, remove from the oven and leave to cool, then place onto a cooling rack.
  10. Melt some apricot jam in a small saucepan with a splash of water until smooth and brush the jam over the buns to glaze.

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