Apple, Cardamom & Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread

IMG_2409

My sweet tooth was bugging me again so I gave in. I’ve wanted to make this recipe for a couple of weeks already but didn’t find the time. The combination of apple, cinnamon and cardamom is just irresistible. I made apple chips and placed one chip in between each slice of the dough, so when you pull it out you get a lovely apple surprise. You can also use store-bought chips, but if you want to make them at home, you can find the recipe by clicking here. Just don’t add the cayenne and sumac. I’ve recently started to use Snapchat, so if you would like to get peeks of Amsterdam just add me. Snapchat: cravingsinams

This recipe is for a 25cm loaf pan.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of All-purpose flour

7gr dry yeast

1 cup of milk

1 tablespoon of cardamom powder

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled

1/3 cup of sugar

1 egg

For the Filling:

3/4 cup of sugar

1 ½ tablespoons of cinnamon powder

1 teaspoon of cardamom powder

3 tablespoons of melted butter

2 apples made into apple chips, you can buy them but I made them at home. Recipe here (just skip the cayenne and sumac)

Extras:

Egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water)

 

Pour the milk into a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the cardamom powder and whisk it. Once it starts to simmer, turn off the heat. Transfer it to a bowl and let it cool down to lukewarm.

Place the yeast and the lukewarm cardamom milk in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it sit for 5 minutes.

Place the rest of the ingredients for the dough in the bowl with the yeast.

Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment.  If you knead it by hand, it will take about 10 minutes.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Once the hour has passed, line your loaf pan with parchment paper.

Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces and lightly flour your working area.

Mix the sugar, cinnamon powder and cardamom powder for the filling in a small bowl.

Roll out one piece of dough into a rectangle of about 44×22 centimeters. Brush it with some melted butter. Then sprinkle some of the spiced sugar all over it. Then using a pizza cutter slice the dough in two lengthwise. Then cut each long slice into 6 pieces, so you have a total of 12 pieces. Place 1 apple chip on top of each piece. Stack each piece on top of the other. Arrange it in half of the prepared loaf pan. Repeat for the remaining piece of dough. Keep the leftover spiced sugar.

IMG_2408

Let it rise for 30 minutes in a warm place. About 10 minutes before the time is up, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Once the 30 minutes are up, brush the top with some egg wash and sprinkle some of the remaining spiced sugar.

Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden. About 20 minutes in, check if it’s getting too dark because of the spiced sugar. If it is, cover the top with aluminum foil for the remaining baking time.

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

 

Sun-dried Tomato Pesto Babka

IMG_1303

Time for a savory babka recipe. I made a pesto with sun-dried tomatoes and cashew nuts. The result is a bread that reminds of pizza. Besides eating it plain, you can cut two thin slices, place some cheese in between and then waffle it. Yes, it’s good! It gets crispy on the outside and melted cheese on the inside. Heaven!

FullSizeRender

This recipe is for one large babka (25cm loaf pan)

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

7grs of dry yeast

½ cup of warm water

½ cup of milk

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of olive oil

1 egg

1 tablespoon of sugar

For the sun-dried tomato pesto:

180gr of sun-dried tomatoes preserved in oil, drained

½ cup of unsalted cashew nuts

40gr of grated Parmesan

2 tablespoons of dried basil

1 tablespoon of dried oregano

1 teaspoon of lime juice

1 teaspoon of sugar

½ cup of tomato puree

Pinch of salt

Chili flakes to taste

Extra:

Egg wash

 

Place the yeast and the warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

After the 5 minutes are up, add the remaining ingredients for the dough. Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment. If you knead it by hand, do it for about 10 minutes.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and grease it with a bit of vegetable oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

While the dough is rising, start making the pesto. Place all of the ingredients for the pesto in the food processor. Pulse until you have a paste and everything is mixed through. Place it on a bowl and set it aside until ready to use.

Once the dough has risen, divide it into 2 equal pieces. Roll out one piece into a rectangle of about 34x26cm. Spread half of the pesto all over the dough. Then roll it like a tight crepe. Repeat for the remaining piece of dough.

IMG_1298

Once you have two filled logs, grab one and make a clean slice over the middle. But leave the top part attached. Then twist it trying to keep the open side up. Repeat for the other log. Then twist the two logs together, slice off the uneven edges. Then pinch the edges to seal them and tuck them underneath. Place the babka in a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Cover it with a piece of greased plastic wrap. Let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

About 15 minutes before the second rise is up, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Brush the babka with the egg wash. Bake it for about 20-25 minutes or until golden.

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Black Kale, Butternut Squash & Cheddar Strata with Homemade Tomato Jam

IMG_9490

Not too long ago, I had a bread pudding for dessert at a restaurant. It had been ages since the last time I had one. Back at home I got that craving again, but for a savory version. So I made this one with black kale and butternut squash. It’s great  for brunch or dinner.

IMG_9489

This recipe is for a 23cm skillet.

Ingredients:

For the tomato jam:

1 kilo of ripe tomatoes

1 ¼ sugar

Juice of 1 lime

1 teaspoon of salt

2 tablespoons of ginger syrup

Chili flakes to taste (optional)

For the strata:

1 small butternut squash (peeled, seeded and finely chopped)

3 tablespoons of olive oil

5 cups of chopped black kale, without the hard stems

1 teaspoon of garlic powder

1 teaspoon of onion powder

Pinch salt

Pepper

150gr of grated cheddar

5 cups of chopped baguette

For the milk mixture:

4 eggs

2 cups of milk

Pinch of salt

Pinch of nutmeg

Pinch of pepper

 

Start by making the tomato jam; boil some water in a large saucepan. Score a shallow x into the bottom of each tomato. Then carefully drop them into the boiling water and let them sit there for about 25 seconds. Then drained them. Carefully peel them and roughly chop them.

Place the tomatoes in a medium saucepan with the remaining ingredients for the jam. Let them cook over medium heat for about 35 minutes, stirring from time to time to prevent the bottom from burning. Taste for salt. Then transfer it to a bowl and allow it to cool down.

To make the strata, place the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, add the butternut squash and cook it for about 5 minutes, while stirring. Then add the kale, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes until the kale starts to wilt. Then turn off the heat.

Grease with vegetable oil a 23cm cast iron skillet or a small oven dish.

In a medium bowl; whisk the eggs, milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg.

To assemble the strata, spread half of the bread over the bottom of the skillet. Then add half of the butternut squash/kale mixture, and then half of the grated cheese. Add the remaining bread, follow it with the squash/kale mixture.  Press with your fingers or a spatula to make it compact. Then pour in the milk mixture. Finish it by adding the remaining grated cheddar. Let it stand in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 180C/350F. Bake the strata for 40 minutes. Serve warm with the tomato jam and enjoy!

Tip: you’ll have some tomato jam leftover, I used it to make some grilled cheese sandwiches.

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

 

Coconut & Dulce de Leche Rolls with Coconut Icing (And Babka)

IMG_8169

I can’t get enough of sweet breads and trying out different flavors. The combination of toasted dried coconut with dulce de leche is amazing. For this recipe you will need one can of full fat coconut milk, left undisturbed in the fridge overnight for the cream to separate from the liquid. I used the liquid for the dough and the creamy thick part that separated for the icing. If it happens that it didn’t separate the next day, just get some coconut cream and use it instead to make the icing. This has happened to me before and I tried using different brands of coconut milk. So no worries if it doesn’t happen. I used 1/5 of the dough to make a tiny babka. Just look at all those layers of dulce de leche and toasted coconut.

IMG_8430

babka fixed

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of All-purpose flour

7gr dry yeast

1 cup of coconut milk

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled

1/3 cup of sugar

1 egg

For the filling:

2 cups of dulce de leche

2 cups of toasted dried coconut

For the egg wash:

1 egg

1 tablespoon of water

For the icing:

½ cup of coconut cream (full fat)

1/3 cup of icing sugar or more if you want a thicker consistency

 

First leave a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge overnight. Be careful not to shake it, you want the cream to separate from the liquid. The next morning, open the can and carefully scrape off the top creamy part. Place it in a small bowl and keep it in the fridge until ready to use. Reserve the liquid to make the dough and let it come to room temperature.

For the filling, just toast the dried coconut in a pan (no oil) over medium heat. Just stir until the coconut gets a light brown color. Set it aside to cool down.

To make the dough, place 1 cup of the coconut liquid with the yeast in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it sit there for 5 minutes. Once the 5 minutes are up, add the flour, salt, sugar, butter and the egg. Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment. You can also knead it by hand (for about 10 minutes).

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

You can bake the rolls in an oven dish or in a cast iron skillet. If you use an oven dish lightly grease it with some butter. For the cast iron skillet, I just lined it with parchment paper this time.

Once the hour has passed, place the dough on your floured working area. Punch it down. I reserved 1/5 of the dough to make a tiny babka (in a  9x18cm loaf pan). But you can make it all into rolls.

Roll it out into a large rectangle, of about 38x32cm. Spread some of the dulce de leche evenly all over the dough but leave about 1 cm free on the edges. If the dulce de leche is too hard, place it in the microwave for 15 seconds to make it more spreadable. Then sprinkle the toasted coconut all over the dulce de leche. Roll the dough like a tight crepe. Slice off the uneven edges. Then slice the log into even pieces of about 2cm thick. Arrange them on the prepared baking dish or skillet, leaving a bit of space in between each one. Cut out a big piece of plastic wrap, brush it with some vegetable oil and cover the rolls with it (greased side touching the rolls).

If you saved some dough to make the babka, here is how to do it:

Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. Roll out one piece into a rectangle. Spread it with some dulce de leche and sprinkle some of the toasted coconut over it. Then roll it like a tight crepe.

IMG_8515

Do the same for the remaining piece. Once you have two filled logs, grab one and make a clean slice over the middle. But leave the top part attached. Then twist it trying to keep the open side up. Repeat for the other log. Then twist the two logs together and pinch the edges to seal them. Tuck the edges underneath. Place the babka in a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Cover it with a piece of greased plastic wrap. Let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

About 15 minutes before the second rise is up, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Once the rolls have risen, brush them with some egg wash and bake them for about 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly golden. The same goes for the babka.

Once the rolls and babka are baked, start making the frosting. Take out the coconut cream from the fridge and place it in a medium bowl. Slowly add the icing sugar while whisking. Add more sugar if you like it less runny. Drizzle some of the coconut icing over the rolls. For the babka, I served it on the side. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Saffron & Cranberry Star Bread

IMG_6076

I wanted to try to make a star bread for a while. I just love the shape and it is perfect for the holidays. Based on the Swedish saffron buns, I thought of making a saffron star bread. And to add more color and flavor, I added a homemade cranberry jam.

IMG_6077

This recipe makes 1 star bread.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of All-purpose flour

7gr dry yeast

½ cup of warm water

½ cup of milk

0.2 grams of saffron

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled

1/3 cup of sugar

1 egg

For the cranberry jam:

1 cup of cranberries

1 cup of water

1/3 of a cup of sugar

For the egg wash:

1 egg

1 tablespoon of cream

 

Start by making the cranberry jam. Place the cranberries, water and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Let it cook for about 12 minutes, the cranberries will burst and it will thicken. Then blend it until smooth. Transfer it to a bowl and set it aside to cool down.

To make the dough, place the milk and saffron in a small saucepan over medium heat. Let it come to a simmer and then turn off the heat. Let it steep for 5 minutes. Then blend it to break the saffron threads. Set it aside.

Place the yeast and the warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

Place the flour, salt, egg, cooled melted butter, sugar and the saffron milk into the bowl with the yeast.

Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment.  You can also knead it by hand.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Once the dough has risen, place it on your floured working area and divide it into 4 equal pieces.

Roll out one piece big enough to cut a circle of about 24cm. Just use a large plate or cake pan to cut the dough into a large circle. Place the circle on a piece of parchment paper. Then repeat for the remaining dough. Once all the dough is ready, place one circle on top of a sheet of parchment paper. This will make it easier to transfer to a baking sheet once the star is assembled.

Spread some of the cranberry jam all over it. Be careful to not add too much because it won’t stick and it will just get very messy.

Place one circle on top of the one with the jam. Repeat until you have no more circles left.

Place a glass in the middle of the circle. Using a knife cut the dough into 16 pieces starting from the rim of the glass. To try to make them as even as possible, I first cut it into 4, then into 8 and finally into 16.

FullSizeRender

Then grab 2 slices and twist them twice. Repeat for all of the 16 slices.

Finally grab two of the twisted slices and press them together to seal them. Let it stand for 10 to 15 minutes. Then brush it with the egg wash.

FullSizeRender (5)

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.

Bake the star bread for 20 minutes or until golden. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Apricot, Date & Walnut Spiced Bread

IMG_5577

This spiced loaf is great to eat on its own but it also works well paired with some blue cheese. The sweetness of the loaf complements very well the strong cheese. We ate it with some Bleu d’Auvergne and fig jam on Saturday as part of our dinner. The apple sauce really keeps this loaf moist and it’s easy to pack, so it makes a nice edible gift as well.

IMG_5579

This recipe is for a medium size loaf pan.

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

½ cup of sugar

1 teaspoon of baking soda

1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder

½ teaspoon of grated nutmeg

1 cup of apple sauce

½ cup of sour cream

10grs of melted butter

Pinch of salt

100grs of chopped walnuts

1 cup of chopped dried apricots

1 cup of chopped dates

Zest of 1 orange

 

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line a medium loaf pan with parchment paper. This just makes it easier to remove the loaf afterwards.

Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Pour the batter into the mold. Tap to get rid of any air bubbles.

Bake for about 40-50 minutes, until golden and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

 

Crab Salad Buns

IMG_5472

I have a soft spot for crab and today I decided to satisfy my craving for it with these crab salad buns.

This recipe is for 12 buns.

Ingredients:

For the buns:

3 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

7grs of dry yeast

½ cup of warm water

½ cup of milk

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of olive oil

1 egg

1 tablespoon of sugar

For the crab salad:

700gr of crab meat, I used canned crab meat

3 celery stalks, chopped very small

1 granny smith apple, chopped very small

Juice of 1 lime

8 tablespoons of mayonnaise

2 teaspoons of mustard

Celery salt to taste

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

½ cup of chopped chives, plus more for decoration

Extras:

Poppy seeds

Egg wash

To make the buns:

Place the yeast and the warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

After the 5 minutes are up, add the remaining ingredients for the dough. Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment. You can also knead it by hand.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and grease it with a bit of vegetable oil.  Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Once the dough has risen, place it on a floured working area and divide it into 12 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball. Place the balls in an oven tray lined with parchment paper, leaving some space in between.

Grease with some vegetable oil, one large piece of plastic wrap. Cover the buns with it, greased side touching the buns (this will prevent them from sticking to the plastic). Let them rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

About 10 minutes before the buns are done rising, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Once the hour is up, brush the buns with the egg wash and sprinkle them with some poppy seeds. Bake them for 15 minutes or till golden.

To make the crab salad, just mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl.

Make a cut along the top of each bun, without going all the way down. Stuff each bun generously with the crab salad and decorate with some chives. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Onion Jam Wreaths

IMG_4386

I’ve wanted to make savory bread again and yesterday I made these wreaths. Thinking onion soup meets rolls in a way. The bread is very soft and the sweetness of the onions really comes through in the jam. These make a great appetizer or side dish to a soup.

IMG_4385

This recipe makes 2 medium wreaths.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

7grs of dry yeast

½ cup of warm water

½ cup of milk

6 sprigs of thyme, leaves only

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of olive oil

1 egg

1 tablespoon of sugar

¼ cup of grated Parmesan cheese

For the onion jam:

4 tablespoons of olive oil

8 medium white onions, thinly sliced

Salt

Pepper

1/3 cup of white wine

¼ cup of balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon of sugar

4 sprigs of thyme, leaves only

Extra:

Egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water)

 

Place the yeast and the warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

After the 5 minutes are up, add the remaining ingredients for the dough. Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment. You can also knead it by hand.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and grease it with a bit of vegetable oil.  Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

While the dough is rising, start making the onion jam. Place the olive oil and sliced onions in a large pan over medium heat. Add some salt and pepper and cook for about 14 minutes. Stir from time to time until the onions have caramelized. Then add the white wine, balsamic vinegar, sugar and thyme. Let it cook while stirring until all of the liquid has evaporated. Taste for salt and pepper. Blend it until smooth. Set it aside to cool down.

Once the dough has risen, place it on a floured working area and divide it into 2 equal pieces.

Roll one piece into a large rectangle of about 35x24cm. Spread some of the onion jam all over the dough. Roll it lengthwise like a tight crepe. Cut the crepe in half trying to make a clean cut, except on one end. Then start twisting the 2 pieces, make sure the opened side showing the onion jam is facing up. Pinch the ends to seal them. Finally form a circle with it, tuck the ends underneath and give it a pinch to seal them. Repeat for the other piece of dough.

IMG_4474

Place each wreath on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Grease with some vegetable oil two large pieces of plastic wrap. Cover the wreaths with them, greased side touching them (this will prevent them from sticking to the plastic). Let the wreaths rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

About 10 minutes before the wreaths are done rising, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Once the hour is up, brush each wreath with the egg wash. If you want, you can sprinkle them with some sea salt. Bake them for 18 minutes or till golden. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Sweet Potato Rolls Stuffed with Chinese BBQ Chicken

IMG_4016

This is something you can do with the leftovers from the holidays. I used rotisserie chicken and I mixed it with some Chinese BBQ sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil. But you can use leftover turkey or pork instead or just keep them vegetarian.

FullSizeRender

This recipe makes 28 small rolls, I made half on a cast iron skillet and half on an oven dish.

For the dough:

7 grs of dry yeast

½ cup of cream, lukewarm

¼ cup of milk

½ cup of mashed sweet potatoes (I roasted them until tender)

3 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

Pinch of salt

3 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled

1/3 cup of sugar

2 eggs

For the filling:

2 ½ cups of chopped rotisserie chicken, leftover turkey or pork

2 tablespoons of Chinese BBQ sauce

2 tablespoons of soy sauce

1 teaspoon of sesame oil

2 tablespoons of oyster sauce

Extras:

Egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water)

 

Place the lukewarm cream and yeast in the bowl of the stand mixer and let it sit for 5 minutes. After the 5 minutes have passed, add the remaining ingredients for the dough to the bowl with the yeast.

Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment.  You can also knead it by hand.

Then remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a floured working area, it will be very sticky so flour your hands as well. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil. Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Place all of the ingredients for the filling in a pan over medium heat and just stir until the chicken is evenly coated. I like to mix it in a pan because the Chinese BBQ sauce is quite sticky and hard to mix unless it’s warm. Set it aside

Once the hour has passed, lightly oil the cast iron skillet or oven dish in which you are going to bake the rolls.

Place the dough in your floured working area. Punch it and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Grab one piece and slice it into 14 pieces. Make each piece into a ball, flatten it and stuff it with about 1 tablespoon of the filling. Close the edges by pinching them together and form a ball again. Place the bun on the prepared skillet, repeat for the rest of the dough.

Cut a big piece of plastic wrap and brush it with some vegetable oil. Then cover the rolls with it and let them rest for 1 hour in a warm place.

About 10 to 15 minutes before the second rise is done, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Remove the plastic wrap from the skillet and brush the buns with the egg wash.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Speculoos (Cookie Butter) & Pear Buns

IMG_1717

Speculoos is a spiced cookie that it is usually eaten around December here. It is delicious and luckily it also comes in butter form. I really felt like baking last week so I thought of making a different version of the traditional Swedish buns. So I just filled these with cookie butter, pears and then sprinkled some pistachios on top. A delicious fall/winter treat!

FullSizeRender (5)

This recipe makes 24 small buns.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3 ½ cups of All-purpose flour

7gr dry yeast

½ cup of warm water

½ cup of milk

1 tablespoon of vanilla extract

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled

1/3 cup of sugar

1 egg

For the filling:

10 tablespoons of speculoos

3 pears, grated & squeezed (use the ones that are better for cooking like Bosc)

For the egg wash:

2 eggs

2 tablespoon of water

Extras:

1/3 cup of chopped pistachios

 

Place the yeast and the warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

Place the remaining ingredients for the dough in the bowl with the yeast.

Knead on low speed for 5 minutes, using the dough hook attachment.  You can also knead it by hand.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil.  Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover it with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Once the hour has passed, line a baking tray with parchment paper. Cut a large piece of plastic wrap, enough to cover the baking tray and brush it with vegetable oil to prevent it from sticking to the buns later on.

Place the dough in your lightly floured working area. Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces.

Microwave the Speculoos for 30 seconds so it is easier to spread. Have the grated and squeezed pears ready.

Roll out one piece into a rectangle of about 30x23cm. Using a pizza cutter or a knife, cut out the uneven edges.

FullSizeRender

Spread evenly half of the cookie butter all over the dough, you can leave a little space on the edges. Sprinkle half of the grated pears.

Grab the top 2 edges of the dough and fold it towards you. Roll it a bit with the rolling pin just to seal it. Then slice it into 12 pieces. Grab one piece and twist it. Then wrap it around your finger making two rounds and then make a knot, tucking one end through the middle. Don’t worry if they are not perfect. They will look better once baked. Repeat for the remaining pieces and the other half of the dough.

Place the buns on the prepared baking tray, bush them with some egg wash (then keep the egg wash in the fridge because you are going to use it again). Cover the buns with the previously oiled piece of plastic wrap.

Let them rise in a warm place for 1 hour.  About 15 minutes before the time is up, preheat your oven to 180C/350F.

Once the hour is up, remove the plastic wrap and brush them again with the egg wash. Sprinkle some pistachios on top of each bun. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook.