Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Chelsea Buns

I love a good sticky bun and it's a tough call when faced with a Chelsea bun or a Belgian Bun, we quite often buy both types from the supermarket but only when they are in the reduced price section. Otherwise they are a bit expensive really, especially since I worked out a rough guestimate for a batch of these homemade buns at a cost of approximately £1 for 16 small Chelsea buns. Obviously this price will vary depending on where you buy your ingredients from but it still works out cheaper than buying a packet of 4 from the supermarket which cost around £1.50. For some reason I'd always been a bit scared of baking my own, completely irrational as I'm quite happy baking bread pretty much every week. It was the idea of rolling up the dough and filling neatly together then cutting into pieces that I was most apprehensive about as I do have a tendency to be a bit cack handed at times.

It was World Baking Day a few weeks ago and the challenge this year was to bake brave. However instead of tackling one of the recipes on the World Baking Day page, ranked in order of difficulty, I decided instead to be brave and tackle something I'd been avoiding for a long time. I'm so glad that I did as my boyfriend said he prefers these to the ones that we used to buy and they weren't anywhere near as scary to make as I thought they would be. I used a recipe from The Great British Book of Baking, the book that accompanied the first series of GBBO. I was surprised to see that there were no spices in this recipe so I think I would add some cinnamon next time I bake them. These buns certainly passed the stickiness test though, lots of finger licking required after one of these! They kept well for a couple of days but did start to dry out a little by the 3rd day after baking, next time I'll make sure I freeze a few.

Ingredients - makes 16 (adapted from The Great British Book of Baking by Linda Collister)

For the dough:
175ml milk
50g unsalted butter
450g strong white bread flour
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp caster sugar
7g sachet easy bake yeast
1 egg

For the filling:
50g unsalted butter, melted
75g dark muscovado sugar
150g mixed dried fruit - I used a value pack which contained sultanas, raisins and mixed peel

For the glaze:
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp honey

  • In a small pan heat together the milk and butter over a low heat until the butter is melted then leave to cool until lukewarm.  In a large mixing bowl mix together the flour, salt, sugar and yeast and make a well in the middle. When the milk and butter has cooled down, beat in the egg and then add the liquid to the flour and work together into a dough using your hand. Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Return to the bowl and cover the dough with clingfilm and leave to rise until doubled in size. This will probably take 90 minutes to 2 hours although check on your dough after an hour just to see how it is doing. 
  • When the dough is ready knock it back and divide into 2 equal pieces and roll each one out into a rectangle 38 x 13cm. Next brush the melted butter over both pieces of dough and sprinkle with the sugar and then the fruit. Now it's time to roll up the dough, start at one long side and roll up like a Swiss roll, repeat for the other piece of dough. Cut each roll of dough into 8 equal sized pieces and place cut side up into a greased 21 x 25cm tin (I used a 23cm square silicone tin so no need for greasing). Cover with clingfilm and leave to rise for 30-40 minutes until nearly doubled in size.
  • Preheat the oven to 200C, remove clingfilm and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and risen. While the buns are baking make the glaze by gently heating the milk, sugar and honey in a small pan but don't let it boil.  Brush the glaze over the buns then return to the oven for 5 minutes then leave to cool for 10 minutes before running a knife around the edge of the tin and turning out onto a wire rack to cool before serving.
We couldn't resist eating a couple before I had chance to take more photos!
 As these were so cheap and cheerful I'm entering them into Credit Crunch Munch run by Helen and Camilla, this month hosted by  Annelie at Delicieux. Also into Yeast Spotting and Made With Love Mondays and Alphabakes as the letter this month is 'R' and I used raisins, Alphabakes is hosted by Ros (this month's host) and Caroline. Finally into the brand new Four Seasons Food challenge where the theme is picnics and these are easy to transport and share for eating outside.

I'm updating this post to link up with One Ingredient run by Nazima and Laura where the theme is vine fruits and Tea Time Treats run by Karen and Kate where the theme is dried fruit.

Four Seasons Food
Four Seasons Food hosted by Delicieux and Chezfoti


  1. These sound a lot like the American sticky buns - although without the cinnamon. And I LOVE sticky buns! :) I really think homemade is the way to go too, if for no other reason than flavor... These look awesome, Jen!

    1. I agree and I'm so glad I can now add these to my baking repertoire :)

  2. Wow, these look so good, all sticky and shiny! I would also be a little afraid of making my own but your recipe is a good one so I might try and conquer my fear! I certainly want to eat yours!! Thanks for entering both Four Seasons Food & Credit Crunch Munch with these :) (by the way, I don't think the links have worked for the FSF badge - could you add a link back to my FSF page and also to Chex Foti manually if the code has not worked for you? Thanks xx)

    1. Ah that's my fault for blogging late at night I just copied the image not the code, all sorted now :)

  3. these look absolutely stunning, so glossy and sticky... the perfect bun!

  4. Excellent Chelsea Buns Jen, these are a favourite of my dads, take him into any bakers and he'll come out with a Chelsea Bun. As my daughter doesn't like anything raison like it kind of kills my mojo for making things like this otherwise I would. I do keep meaning to make Cinnamon Buns though which must be very similar in method! Thank you for entering Credit Crunch Munch with these delicious fluffy looking buns:-)

  5. You can't beat a good sticky bun! These look great and are definitely much cheaper to make at home. Thanks for entering AlphaBakes

  6. Well done you! These looks so professional and utterly delish! Could really fancy one right now with a large mug of tea, eh well. Thanks so much for entering them to the Four Seasons Food challenge, the perfect picnic nibble.

  7. You have fabulous buns Jen! LOL! No really, those Chelsea buns look the business! Karen

  8. Absolute perfection, these look wonderful. I love Chelsea buns. Not made them before, but glancing at your recipe its clear they use considerably less butter than cinnamon rolls which I have made. So definitely one I shall be trying out!


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