Today I’d like to share my recipe for Apricot & Pistachio Buns. I’m so excited to be participating in my very first #Breadbakers event. #BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. I adore fruit in any way, shape or form so I was very happy with this month’s theme of “Stone Fruit”.
Sweet, tart apricots and salty, savory pistachios complement each other very nicely. For these Apricot & Pistachio Buns I highlight those flavors with a little cinnamon, ginger and one of my favorite spices, cardamom.
In the photos you can see the unusual technique I use for rolling the dough and forming the buns. I spent some time thinking about how to incorporate the nuts and fruit into the dough because I wanted to keep the apricots and pistachios somewhat separate. I thought the flavors would get muddled if I just mixed it all together. At first I considered mixing the apricots into the dough and then using the pistachios as a filling. But I was worried that the flavor of the apricots would get lost in the rich dough. Since the theme for today’s #Breadbakers event is “stone fruit” I wanted to be sure the apricots were front and center in the finished product.
So I decided to use both the fruit and nuts as filling, but layered them so that each flavor could stand out. It also happens that using this technique makes for a very striking pattern when a bun is cut to reveal the layers. Using apricot preserves in the glaze adds another layer of apricot flavor and the preserves give the glaze a beautiful color.
I baked the Apricot & Pistachio Buns in jumbo muffin tins, but you can line them up on a buttered or parchment lined sheet pan. If you use regular sized muffin tins you probably want to cut the buns a little smaller, maybe getting 14-16 buns instead of 12.
- 1 cup (8 oz, 236ml) warm milk (110°F)
- 1/4 cup (2oz 55g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (2oz 55g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon dry yeast
- 3.5 cups (15 oz, 450g) unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup (7oz 190g) dried apricots
- 1/4 cup (2 oz, 55g) melted butter for brushing
- 1 cup (5 oz, 150g) shelled pistachios
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 1/2 cup Apricot Preserves, heated for 30 seconds in the microwave
- 2 cups (9 oz, 255g) Powdered Sugar
- 2 tablespoons warm water, approximately
- In a mixer bowl (see note) combine the warm milk, sugar, 1/4 cup melted butter, egg and yeast
- Add 1/2 the flour, the salt and the spices
- Turn the speed to medium and run for 2 minutes.
- Change to the dough hook. With mixer on low add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time.
- The dough should be soft and elastic, will clear the sides of the bowl and gather on the hook. You may not need all the flour.
- Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead into a smooth ball.
- Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turn once to grease the surface.
- Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temp to rise until doubled in size (about 1 1/2 hours).
- Pour boiling water over the apricots, soak for 1/2 hour, drain and chop into small bits
Make Pistachio Filling
- Process pistachios with, sugar and spices in a food processor or blender until coarsely ground
- Set aside 1/4 cup for topping the buns.
Shape the Buns
- Brush Jumbo Muffin pans with melted butter.
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface
- Roll to a 16"x20"rectangle, brush the surface of the dough with melted butter
- Sprinkle the upper 1/2 of the rectangle with pistachio filling,
- Fold the lower half of the dough over the upper 1/2 (see photos)
- Brush the dough with melted butter then sprinkle with chopped apricots
- Starting from the end closest to you, tightly roll the dough into a log, pinch the seam to seal
- Cut with a serrated knife into 12 buns
- Place a bun in each cup of the buttered muffin tin
- Brush the tops of the buns with melted butter
- If baking the same day allow the buns to rise for about an hour until doubled in volume.
- If baking the next day, cover the buns with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning remove the buns from the refrigerator and allow to rise at room temperature until doubled in volume (about 1 hour).
- Preheat the oven to 350°F convection and 375°F regular.
- Bake until golden brown. About 15 minutes.
- Remove the buns from the pans and place on a cooling rack to glaze.
- While the buns are baking, combine the powdered sugar and warm apricot preserves in a small bowl. Add about 2 tablespoons of water to achieve a texture like pancake batter.
- While the buns are still warm drizzle with the glaze and sprinkle with reserved pistachios
I use a stand mixer to make the dough but it can be made by hand. Start with a wooden spoon to mix the dough. As you add the flour and the dough gets too thick to mix with the spoon, dump the dough onto a floured surface and use your hands to finish mixing the dough.
You might also like:
Thanks to Mireille at The Schizo Chef for hosting this event. #BreadBakers – Stone Fruit
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