Friday, July 13, 2012

Sourdough Fruit Buns

Winter is a great time to be experimenting with sourdough fruit buns.  This batch came out of the oven on a cold Monday morning as ‘smoko’ for hungry men who had been working with our sheep all morning.  These buns are slightly chewy and fill the kitchen with the most delicious sweet, earthy aroma when they are cooking. 

I urge you to use good quality dried fruit, I buy mine from Tabletop Grapes.  Their chemical free products smell like fruit cake before you even start baking with them!




Sourdough Fruit Buns
This recipe has been very loosely adapted from several bread recipes in the Bourke Street Bakery cookbook and the recipe for hot cross buns in the Real Food Companion. This recipe could be easily halved if necessary.


1530 g white bread flour
800 g active sourdough starter
800 ml water
40 g salt
Spices such as cinnamon to taste
360 g mixed dried fruit, soaked in water overnight and then drained.  I use raisins, currants, barberries and figs.  I chop the figs into small pieces.
¼ cup honey, warmed for glazing

Either by hand or in an electric mixer with a dough hook combine the starter, flour and water until a rough dough forms.

Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 20 minutes. 

Add the salt.  If using an electric mixer, mix for 6 minutes or until a smooth, elastic dough forms.  If mixing by hand knead for 20 minutes or until a smooth, elastic dough forms.  Add the fruit and spice if using.  You will need to use your hands to work the fruit gently into the dough.

Place the dough into a lightly greased container and allow to bulk prove for about 1 hour.

Knock back the dough and allow to bulk prove for a further 1 hour.

Place dough on a clean, lightly floured or lightly oiled surface.  With a dough divider, divide the dough into approximately 30 balls of dough, each weighing around 120 g.  It can be a bit sticky but don’t be tempted to add too much extra flour…it will work in the end!

Shape the dough into balls.

Place the buns on large sheets of baking paper leaving a little room between each bun.  I use two pieces of baking paper, ensuring each piece of paper will fit on my bread/pizza shovel.  This ensures I can slide my shovel under the whole thing to place it into the oven more easily.

Allow the buns to prove until they are touching each other and have grown by around two-thirds.  In the cold weather I leave them overnight to prove.

Preheat your oven to its highest temperature.  I use a layer of unglazed terracotta tiles in my oven for bread baking.  Ensure to place the tiles in a cold oven before you start preheating.

Carefully place the buns in the oven.  Spray the buns with a mist of water before shutting the oven door.

Bake for 20 minutes, then turn the loaves around and bake for a further 10 minutes.  The base of the buns should sound hollow when you tap them.

Using a brush, glaze the buns with warmed honey while they are warm.  The honey glaze makes the buns sticky to handle but gives them a lovely shine and adds a little extra sweetness.






I know there are some keen sourdough cooks out there so I hope this is of interest to you!


Do you cook with dried fruit?
What is your favourite way to use dried fruit?
Do you ever have a hungry crew to feed at smoko time?


Today I am linking up with YeastSpotting.  

24 comments:

  1. Wow, hats off to you, Jane. I consider myself a good cake baker, but having tried to make bread once, I realised that it is an entirely different skill - or affinity, perhaps. I thought 'i can make cakes, so i can make bread' but it just didn't translate - hence i have a great respect for anyone who can make bread. these look and small delicious (yes i can smell them thru your pics!) I hope there was lots of butter slathered about :-) i don't cook with dried fruit enough - prunes though, yes, soaked in brandy and tucked into a pudd or cake as a juicy rich surprise. enjoy your weekend!

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    1. Thank you E...baking bread is different to baking cakes I agree. Both can be so rewarding!

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  2. Jane, they look delicious. Well done. I think I could put up with the stickiness of the honey for that beautiful little bun! Sultanans and raisins are favorites of mine.

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  3. Those look so delicious! I love dried fruit but we are in the heat of summer here with fresh fruit all around. I will keep this recipe marked for a few months from now :)

    Lilly

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  4. oh yum they look amazing..i want to have smoko at your place..:)

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    1. Call in for smoko any time Jane x

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  5. I received a Kitchen Aid mixer for my birthday and am yet to use the dough hook, but this recipe is very tempting, thank you.
    x

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  6. i love sourdough so i'm pretty sure i'm gonna love this!

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  7. Your rolls look wonderful Jane. I've used the Bourke St Bakery recipe for spiced fruit sourdough so now I'll have to try your adaptation.
    I'm so jealous that you can buy locally produced dried fruit; if only I'd known about them when we stayed at Mildura as a tour would have been really interesting.

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    1. Thanks Anne...you would love this dried fruit and the people who run the business are just lovely :)

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  8. Jane, they look fabulous! Pete adores fruit buns, although I usually make a loaf. Will have to try these for him.. :)

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  9. Great minds, Jane. I have these sultanas in my kitchen at the moment and am amazed by how absolutely beautiful they are! I am about to write a snippet about them for my good things page, comparing them to ordinary ones. Have you tried them with farm fresh walnuts, as a such? Sublime! Love your buns. You are an inspiring cook xox

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    1. Thank you for your generous words Lizzy! Walnuts are a great idea x

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  10. i do suspect bread making is in my future once this elimination diet is over! these look great Jane!

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    1. Great idea Lucent, bread making is so rewarding!

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  11. What a marvelous find, this blog! I live in Texas, USA, and am an avid baker planning to open a storefront bakery. While looking online for inspiration, I stumbled upon your blog. How exciting, it feels so good to read. Let me explain-as a young child, I lived for a short while in Adelaide, SA. I felt so at home there, and ever since, Australia has held a special place in my heart. Imagine the delight with which I read about the Adelaide market! What fun, it causes me to revisit a very happy chapter in my past.

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    1. Lovely to hear from you Gabriella! Please keep in touch...I am very interested in your baking venture :)

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  12. Hi Jane. Just discovered your blog and it's fantastic! I'm an avid fan of sourdough but it wasn't until about 4 or 5 fruit loaf attempt that I managed a good one. The dried fruit either soaked up to much water or I soaked the fruit too long. My special ingredient in fruit loaf is a generous scattering of barberries for a hit of sourness! along with a lot of spice

    -Rubenjamesnewcastle

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    1. Thank you Ruby! I have used barberries also in fruit loaf and it is delicious! Please visit again.

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Hello and welcome. I will try to reply to all comments eventually because I love the conversation! Jane