Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cinnamon knot buns (zeeuwse bolus)

I don't usually just lift other people's recipes, but I have to start this post by admitting that I have copied this more or less directly from a wonderful blog I came across called Bake My Day! This is stage one of my plan for reproducing the delicious little buns filled with candied ginger which I ate in Amsterdam. I thought I would start with the dough, and as this recipe is for a Dutch sweetened bread of Jewish origin, it seemed a good place to start. (We bought the matrushka oilcloth in the background of the photo below at the street market in Albert Cuypstraat.)

500 g plain flour
7 g salt
7 g fast action yeast
320 g milk
75 g butter or margarine
zest of one lemon
250 gr soft brown sugar
2 tbs cinnamon

  1. In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, fast action yeast, milk, butter or margarine and lemon zest. Start by mixing it thoroughly with a spoon, then when it comes together mix by hand and knead until you have a nice light dough. Put the bowl inside a plastic bag, leave in a warm place (if you have one) for 45 minutes (a little longer if you don't have a warm spot in your kitchen). In a separate bowl, mix the brown sugar and cinnamon and set aside.
  2. Weigh the dough and divide into 16 equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball, place on a tray, cover with plastic and leave to relax for 20 minutes or so. After 20 minutes, take each ball and roll it gently out into a rope, about 20 cm long - see photo below. (You should be able to do this between your hands, but feel free to roll it on a flat surface if needs be.)
  3. Now sprinkle plenty of the sugar and cinnamon mixture over a clear work surface, and one by one roll the dough ropes in it until they at least 30 cm long, making sure they get thoroughly coated with the sugar.
  4. Finally, form the ropes into knots, as per the photo below. (This is very easy - just find the mid-point, wrap one end of the rope around your finger, remove the finger from the resulting hole and poke the end of the rope through. Then repeat for the other side.) Place the coils on an oiled baking sheet, cover with plastic and leave to rise for about 60 minutes until they have more or less doubled in size. You will probably have to use two baking sheets and bake in two batches. (Because my sugar wasn't quite sticky enough, I cheated and sprayed the finished knots with a little water and sprinkled them with some extra sugar just before baking.) Turn the oven on to 250oC.
  5. Bake the knots for 8 minutes. They should be brown and even a little crisp on the outside, but still very soft on the inside.

'raw' ropes

rolling the rope in sugar, and forming the knots

risen knots

1 comment:

Baking Soda said...

Nice! I think you managed perfectly well to recreate Zeeuwse bolus. Hope everyone liked it.
(Isn't it funny how the ingredients resemble cinnamon buns but the final bun taste somewhat different?)