Here’s another HK style bun I made recently. The recipe was taken from Dinner Rolls (Sponge Method) with slight modification. I added some sprouted Kamut flour for more nutrition and reduced the sugar amount a bit as the coffee topping was already sweet enough. Feel free to substitute the Kamut flour with other whole grain flour such as whole wheat, spelt, or einkorn flour. You may need more or less liquid for the dough though as the water absorption rate is different.
I flavored the topping with espresso powder as I like coffee. Simply omit it for a plain version. The topping will drip off and cover the entire bun during baking, resulting in a crunchy edge. The shape of the bun resembles a UFO. It is best to consume the buns within a few hours after cooling or the top would become soft and sticky. To fix this, place the buns in the toaster oven for a few minutes as if making a toast and then let cool. The top and edges should regain crunchiness afterwards.
Hong Kong Style Coffee Mexican Buns (Sponge Method)
For the Coffee Topping
60 g all purpose flour
45 g granulated sugar (I used organic cane sugar)
2 tsp instant espresso powder
60 g unsalted butter, softened
60 g beaten egg
For the Sponge
210 g bread flour, plus extra for dusting
2.1 g instant yeast or gold instant yeast
125 g water
For the Final Dough
All of the sponge
30 g all purpose flour
60 g sprouted Kamut flour
0.9 g instant yeast or gold instant yeast
45 g beaten egg
30 g milk
12 g dry milk powder
24 g granulated sugar (I used organic cane sugar)
4.5 g salt
30 g unsalted butter, softened
For the Coffee Topping 咖啡麵糊
In the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix all dry ingredients for 30 seconds until evenly distributed. Add softened butter and mix at low speed until mixture resembles a thick paste, about 2 minutes. Gradually beat in egg mixture at medium-low speed until smooth and incorporated. Transfer mixture into a piping bag. Set aside.
For the Sponge 中種麵團
Add flour and yeast into the mixing bowl and stir well. Add water and mix with the stand mixer with the dough hook on for about 4 minutes until a dough is formed. Transfer dough to a lightly greased mixing bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 40 to 60 minutes then refrigerate for 12 to 18 hours.
*For same-day use, let dough rise at room temperature until tripled in size, about 2 hours.
For the Final Dough 主麵團
Remove the sponge from the fridge. In the bowl of the stand mixer with the dough hook attached, combine the sponge and all ingredients of the main dough except the butter. Mix at low speed for about 3 minutes until the dough comes together. Raise speed to medium and knead for 3 minutes to form a smooth dough. Add in softened butter and continue kneading with low speed until all the butter is Incorporated, about 2 to 3 minutes. Raise speed to medium and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, 2 to 3 minutes. When a piece of dough is stretched, it will form a translucent membrane that would tear with uneven edges (maintain the final dough temperature at roughly 26℃/79℉ for best result). Shape dough into a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm environment (28℃/82℉) for 40 minutes.
On a light floured surface, gently pat to flatten the dough then divide into 10 equal portions. Shape each into a smooth ball with seam side facing down and be careful not to tear the dough surface. Carefully transfer the dough pieces onto a parchment lined baking sheet (i used bread paper liners. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place (32 to 35℃/90-95℉) for 45 to 60 minutes until puffy and almost doubled in size.
***prepare the coffee paste during the final proof
See the following video for dough dividing and shaping.
Preheat the oven to 350℉/180℃ 15 minutes before baking. Snip a corner off the piping bag and pipe coffee batter evenly on each of the dough surfaces in a circular motion. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden. Transfer to the cooling rack to cool.
*Adjust oven temperature and baking time according to your own oven.
*Tent with aluminum foil about 2/3 of the way if the bread appears to brown too quickly.
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