Apricot and cardamom Chelsea buns
Got a few hours to spare this weekend? Stretch your baking skills with a Scandinavian twist on the classic currant bun
Mornings can be a struggle once the clocks go back, but when you know you’ve got one of these gloriously sticky buns waiting for you (along with a good strong cup of coffee), it should make getting out of bed that bit easier.
In this recipe, we’ve swapped the traditional Chelsea bun filling for a pairing of warming cardamom and sweet apricot. This tried-and-tested combination is typically found in Danish pastries, and makes a delicious alternative to cinnamon and sultanas.
Bake a batch of these fruit-filled cakes at the weekend and you’ll be set for days to come. Enjoy them for breakfast, brunch, afternoon tea or dessert – just make sure you store them in an airtight container to keep them fresh.
These buns may take a little while to make, but they really are worth the effort – and should help you ‘rise and shine’ this winter.
APRICOT AND CARDAMOM CHELSEA BUNS
Preparation and cooking time: 3 hours
Makes 10 buns
40g unsalted butter
500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp salt
1x 7g sachet of fast-action dried yeast
Vegetable oil, for greasing
For the filling:
25g unsalted butter, melted
75g soft brown sugar
¾ tsp ground cardamom
150g dried apricots, chopped
For the glaze:
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp caster sugar
1. Place the milk and butter in a saucepan over a low heat. Warm gently until the butter melts and the mixture is lukewarm.
2. Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and tip in the yeast.
3. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture, crack in the egg and stir until everything comes together to form a soft dough. You may need to add a little more flour.
4. Tip the dough onto a generously floured work surface. Knead for 5-10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth, elastic and no longer feels sticky.
5. Lightly oil a bowl with a little vegetable oil. Place the dough in the bowl and turn until it is covered in oil.
6. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and set aside in a draught-free place for 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
7. Line two baking trays with baking parchment.
8. Knock the dough back to its original size and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out the dough into a rectangle approximately 40cm long and 0.5cm thick.
9. Brush the dough with the melted butter, then sprinkle over the brown sugar, cardamom and apricots.
10. Starting from one of the longest edges, roll the dough up to form a tight cylinder. Trim the ends to neaten, then cut it into ten 4cm slices and place on the lined baking trays, leaving a little space between each slice.
11. Cover with a tea towel and leave to rise for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6.
12. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until risen and golden brown.
13. Just before removing the buns from the oven, make the glaze. Heat the milk and sugar in a saucepan until boiling. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
14. Remove the buns from the oven and brush with the glaze. Cool on a wire rack.