Saturday, December 9, 2006

Chelsea Buns

Before inverting on cooling rack.

Chelsea Buns

Here is the recipe you requested! I didn't write it out the other day because it is a bit involved. It is worth the effort for sure though!

My mum got this one from The Purity Cookbook, which was published for many years by The Purity Flour Company in Canada. Her cookbook was given to her almost 45 years ago as a wedding or bridal shower gift and literally fell apart because it was so well used. We were able to find a gently used one to replace it a few years ago - it's a household classic!

Basic Sweet Dough


1 cup of milk


1/3 cup of sugar, 2 tsp. salt & 1/2 cup shortening (or butter works in a pinch)

Stir until shortening melts and set aside.


1 tsp. sugar in 1/2 cup warm water


1 TBSP dry active yeast over top and let sit for 10 minutes to 'proof''. It will be foamy. Stir briskly with a fork and add to warm milk mixture.


1 egg and add to liquids, stirring well


2 cups pre-sift flour combining well and then add 2-2 1/2 cups more flour. Work in the last amount of flour with a 'rotating motion' of your hands (or the dough hook on my KitchenAid Stand Mixer on 'stir' works well).

Turn dough onto an lightly floured board and knead for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Shape into a smooth ball. Place in a greased bowl and turn once to grease top of dough. Cover with a damp tea towel. Place in a warm spot - about 80 degrees. I warm my oven, leave the oven light on, place a shallow pan of boiling water on the rack beneath the bowl , close the oven door and set the timer. Let rise until it doubles in bulk - about 1 hour.

Punch down the risen dough and turn onto a lightly floured board. Divide into two equal rounded balls and cover with a clean tea towel. Let rest for 10 minutes. Use each portion to make any Sweet Dough Recipe.

Chelsea Buns

Place 1/3 butter in each of two glass 8x8 or 9x9 baking square pans. Add 1/3 cup brown sugar to each pan. Melt on stovetop slowly over low burner. Allow to cool slightly. Add 1/2 pecan pieces to each pan. You can also use 9 or 12 glazed cherry halves placed downside up for color in each pan. My mom used to get pretty fancy placing her pecan and red and green glazed cherries 'just so'. Each 'bun' would look like a work of art, but I'm a simple cook!


1/3 cup butter and set aside


1/2 cup sugar, 2 Tbsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg and 1/2 cup raisins - we also use 1/2 chopped pecans. Set aside.

Roll out one round of dough on a lightly floured board into a 10x14 rectangle shape. Brush with 1/2 of the melted butter. Sprinkle with 1/2 the cinnamon sugar mixture. Roll tightly, beginning at the short end. Slice with a sharp knife into 9 or 12 rolls and place, cut side down, on brown sugar mixture in square pan. Repeat for other dough ball.

Cover and allow to rise again - about 45 minutes, until doubled. It goes faster if the pans are still a bit warm, or you can place in warm oven with the pan of boiling water again.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 35 -40 minutes. I sometimes have a problem with the edges browning too much before the center is baked. I turn my oven down a bit when that happens. You'll know your oven best. The glass pans are helpful because you can peek underneath and see if the dough is still 'grey' and unbaked. Remove from oven and invert immediately on cooling rack, removing the pan. Be careful of the hot sugar mixture - it really burns! Soak pans at once. Enjoy warm with fresh butter.

Yield: 24 small buns or 18 large buns

This is also the dough my mom used for Swedish Tea Ring at Christmas. Since we are here at home for Christmas, I'll be making those to freeze next week. It is a Christmas morning tradition to pull one out and warm it, garnish with icing, cherries and toasted almonds and serve, along with fresh fruit and hot cocoa.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much! :-) I was the anonymous request - I forgot to put my name.

    Mrs. Harris


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