Chelsea Buns with a Dutch twist [GBBO Bake Along]

bread week

You guys, I’m so proud of myself! I’ve only gone and baked myself some bread! Now, you might think “well, duh, you’re a baker, right?”, but any baker will be able to tell you that baking bread is something completely different from baking pies and tarts and cakes. And I’d only ever baked something resembling bread once before a couple of years ago. I think it was a pizza type dough.

Anyway, back to this bread! It was Bread Week on The Great British Bake Off – the week everybody always dreads, including me this year. I was going to have to bake along and I knew nothing about bread! Luckily, the Signature Challenge of the episode was to make Chelsea Buns (for the Americans: think cinnamon rolls). Baking something like Chelsea Buns or cinnamon rolls had been on my baking bucket list for a while now, so it was perfect. Still daunting, but perfect!

I found a recipe from the winner of the 2015 edition of Heel Holland Bakt (the Dutch Bake Off). She bakes something that looks like Chelsea buns, only she calls it suikerbrood (“sugar bread”, a typical Dutch bread). They seemed close enough to  Chelsea buns to me, though, so I decided to give them a go. I used her quantities for the bread, but changed the method a tiny bit (I used a stand mixer, for instance) and also changed up the filling. I added sultanas, for example, which are a must in Chelsea buns, or so I’ve been told by Bake Off and Wikipedia. I also added a little more orange zest.

I was so afraid the dough wouldn’t rise properly, or that I would do something wrong with the baking, but these buns came out perfectly! The original recipe was a bit brief in its directions, so I’ve written it all down a little more elaborately (and in English) so it’ll be easier to follow.

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Banana Walnut Bread

The other day I was scrolling through my old blog posts, and I came across my Christmas post. I love that one, since it makes me all cheerful to remember those two wonderful days. It also made me realise, however, that I never shared the recipe for the Banana Walnut Bread with you! I think my (initial) reason not to was the fact that I only had one picture of it, but I won’t let that stop me now, because this bread was absolutely delicious! I should make it again soon… It’s actually more in between a bread and a cake, so technically you could also serve it with a cup of tea. I like it best for lunch, though!

walnootbanaanbrood

You’ll need…

– 50 g rolled oats

– 50 g walnuts, chopped

– 160 g plain flour

– 75 g wholewheat flour

– 3 teaspoons baking powder

– 1 teaspoon salt

– 160 g dark brown sugar

– 125 ml buttermilk

– 3 ripe bananas, mashed (300 g)

– 2 egg whites

– 2,5 tablespoons olive oil

– a cake/loaf tin

– and an oven, of course! This bread needs to be baked at 190 °C (don’t forget to preheat your oven!)

So, let’s get baking!

1. Toast the walnuts and oats The very first thing you need to do is to toast the oats and the walnuts in the oven for a few minutes. Place them on a baking tray and put the tray in your (somewhat) preheated oven. The oats and walnuts should come out golden brown and crispy, this takes about 6 to 8 minutes, but no longer than that.

2. Mix together dry ingredients Next up, you need to mix together the plain flour, wholewheat flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

3. Mix together wet ingredients Take a second bowl, and use this one to mix together the dark brown sugar, the buttermilk, the mashed bananas, the egg whites and the olive oil. Everything needs to be well combined, so don’t under-stir it.

4. Mix together ALL the things! Now, it’s time to mix the flour mixture into the wet mixture, and also put in your toasted oats and walnuts. It’ll all probably smell pretty good right about now! It’ll get even better…

5. Bake your bread All that’s left to do now is to put the mixture into your tin and smooth it out. Then, put the tin in the oven and let the bread bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

And that is all! You’ve got yourself a very quick and easy bread which is perfect for breakfast or lunch. Enjoy!