Now that we’re in week three of The Great British Bake Off, it probably comes as no surprise that we enjoy sweet treats, especially when they’re infused with our range of spirits. And this week is no exception - for Bread Week we’ve baked a batch of Belgian buns…but with a Cherry Brandy shaped twist.
Adding Cherry Brandy really is the um, cherry on top of the cake (or bun, if you will). Sure, you could have regular icing, but would it be as flavoursome? Probably not. Adding the Cherry Brandy makes the classic Belgian bun the grown-up iced treat you probably didn’t know you needed or wanted…until now.
In the spirit of sharing, we baked these and brought them in to Ableforth’s HQ, and they were wolfed down so quickly there was barely time to boil the kettle to make a nice ol’ cup of tea to accompany.
So, without further ado we present to you our Cherry Brandy Bun recipe. We’d recommend making at least three batches of these, because you will have to share. (And eat some for yourself to “test” them…)
90ml whole fat milk
1tsp of dry active yeast
225g strong white flour
1/2 tsp salt
25g unsalted butter
50g caster sugar
1 medium egg
2 tablespoons of cherry jam
1 large handful of raisins
1 large handful of dried cherries
4 tsp of Ableforth’s Cherry Brandy
Warm the milk to hand hot in the microwave (around 20 seconds).
Add a pinch of sugar and the fast acting yeast.
Leave this for around 20 minutes you will see the yeast working.
In a bowl mix the flour and salt.
Cube up the butter and then rub in using your fingers to make a breadcrumb consistency.
Stir the sugar into the dry ingredients.
In the centre of the bowl make a depression and add the egg and the yeast/milk mix.
Gradually mix in the flour from around the edge to make a soft dough - if it's too dry then add some more milk to the mix but make sure it is at least room temperature.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface.
Knead for around 5 minutes until it's smooth and elastic.
Put it in a clean bowl and cover with a dish towel for around 2 hours - make sure it's in a warm location otherwise the dough will take much longer to double in size.
While you wait, mix 4 teaspoons of your Ableforth’s Cherry Brandy in to your jam.
Once the dough has doubled in size knead again for approximately 2 minutes and then roll out.
Spread with the Cherry Brandy jam and then sprinkle on the handfuls of raisins.
Roll up the dough to along the thick end similar to how you would roll a Swiss roll.
Cut into pieces about 3cm thick (this can get a bit messy!)
Place on a greased baking tray and leave for the second rise for around 30 minutes again make sure it's in a warm place.
Pre-heat the oven at 200C (180c in a fan oven) and bake the buns until golden brown. (about 15 minutes - N.B the time between perfect and burnt is very small)
Mix the icing sugar with enough cherry brandy to make a smooth paste which can be spooned onto the buns.
Remove the buns once cooked and place on a wire rack to cool down.
Once they have cooled add the icing and place a cherry on the top.