21 Jul 2014

Tomato, olive and mozzarella pizza buns (savoury Chelsea buns)

Ask French expats what they miss the most about France and you'll probably hear in length about camembert, baguette and saucisson (cured sausage). 

I do share their sorrow (I go on a smelly cheese-baguette therapy every time I go back to France), but what makes me miss France even more in my London life is the lack of proper blinds on windows.

After all these years, I still don't understand how British people can sleep without blinds to block the light, even more when you take into account that it's day light at 4.30am these days.
Why, oh why don't your houses have blinds?

"Light makes you strong" tells me The Man.
Yeah yeah, call me a tree fern.

Until I can buy a place of my own and build proper blinds to my windows, I'll go back to bed with my mask on. Good night!

Tomato, olive and mozzarella pizza buns

Like most breads, these buns take a bit of time to make (because of the two rising stages), but there are very easy to make, and are well worth the time.
Adapted from their famous sweet equivalent, the Chelsea Buns (which recipe you'll find on my blog here), they are as delicious as they look impressive (and you can change the filling with pretty much whatever you like), and will make the perfect accompaniment to a very simple soup for dessert, or an impressive addition to a picnic or a dinner party.


500g/1lb 2oz strong white flour, plus extra for dusting 
50g/2oz caster sugar 
10g/¼oz salt 
40g/1½oz unsalted butter cut into small pieces, plus extra for greasing the tin 
2 free-range eggs 
2 x 7g sachets fast-acting dried yeast 
150ml/5fl oz lukewarm milk 
90ml/6 tbsp lukewarm water
3/4 of a pot olive and sundried tomato pesto (or any other pesto) 
1 ball of mozzarella, very finely sliced
a handful of lovely black olives in water, sliced
some parmesan, grated (optional)

Method to make the pizza buns: 

1/ Place the flour, caster sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add the butter, eggs, yeast, milk and warm water.

2/ Mix the ingredients with your hands until a rough dough is formed. 

3/ Tip the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead well for ten minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. 

4/ Place the dough into a clean, oiled bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to rise for one hour in a warm place (or in front of an heating over)

5/ Tip the dough out onto a very lightly floured surface. Roll out the dough into a rectangle about 50x28cm. Turn the dough so that the longer edge is closest to you and “tack” the dough to the work surface by pressing it down firmly with your finger.

6/ Spread the pesto onto the surface of the dough with the back of a spoon. Spread the mozzarella slices and olive slices on top of the pesto (it doesn't matter if the whole surface is not covered). Grate a little parmesan on top, if desired. 

7/ Roll the long side of the dough towards you quite tightly, forming a spiral inside. When rolled up, release the tacked edge and place it onto a floured part of the surface. With a sharp knife cut the sausage shape into 5cm rounds.

8/ Place all spiral rounds, swirly side up, into a large, deep roasting tin or baking tray (I used a round cake tin with removable botton) greased thoroughly with butter, leaving a 1cm space between each one. You want them to be close enough so that they will bake with their sides touching.

9/ Cover with a damp tea towel and set aside in a warm place to rise for an hour. They should have expanded and be touching each other.

10/ Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. When the buns are ready, put them in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. 

11/ After removing the buns from the oven, let them cool slightly before removing them from the tin and placing on a cooling rack, before pulling them apart.

Recipe inspired by Paul Hollywood's savoury chelsea buns
The olives I used in the recipe are Spanish olives kindly offered by Olive it!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please feel free to leave your comments and suggestions!