Sunday, September 18, 2016

Taipei Coconut Buns

When I saw the Bread Baking Babes'(BBB) selection for this month, Coconut Rolls, it struck a chord with me though I knew I'd neither made nor eaten one before. But then I realized that I not only owned the book that was the source of the recipe but I'd flagged it to make years ago! It was time to give it a try.
It's my first time participating as a Bread Baking Buddy in this group of talented bread bakers who are known (notorious?) for switching things up in recipes; Kitchen of the Month Lien's recipe for these sweet buns is an adaptation of the original. I decided to make the rolls as the recipe appears in the book which meant using cake and all-purpose flours and making a sponge to start. There seems to be an error in my edition (Random House Canada) in regards to the amount of AP flour, calling for only 2/3 to 3/4 cup (80-90g) which produced a thin, pancake-like batter. I suspect it should be 1-2/3 to 1-3/4 cups (200-210g) as this amount worked perfectly in creating a soft, supple dough. I followed Lien's lead in reducing the salt in the dough, reducing the sugar in the filling and doubling the filling.

These were a bit of a challenge for me to shape. I realized after forming the first few that rolling the strips of dough a little wider made it easier to accommodate the increased amount of filling but I still had trouble sealing the ends. Remarkably, they stayed closed during proofing and baking.
These were so good! They were pillowy soft with a chewy coconut-caramel filling, perfect with a cup of tea. I'm glad I was finally motivated to make them.  

For the BBB version of the recipe and excellent photos of the shaping of the rolls, visit host Lien's blog here. The original recipe for Taipei Coconut Buns is from Home Baking: The Artful Mix of Flour and Tradition Around the World by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid.


  1. These are so pretty, filling in the middle is perfect (I had a hard time getting it right in the centre) and the dough looks really fluffy too.
    This way of making the rolls (strips, pushing the coconut back in at the end) was a it fiddly, I wouldn't have done it myself. Lots just laid the filling in portions on the dough, keeping the ends free from filling so they close better. Thanks for baking with us again Zosia!!

    1. Portioning the filling makes perfect sense - I wish I'd thought of it!

  2. These look perfect!! I ended up making round buns because I had so much trouble shaping too.

  3. These look perfect!! I ended up making round buns because I had so much trouble shaping too.

  4. Wow. Perfection! Your coconut buns look great.

    I must say that I'm not surprised that you haven't made all the recipes that you'd flagged in Duguid and Alford's book. We're reading a library copy of it right now and I will probably have to buy the book because we're just half-way through and already have 20 or 30 recipes flagged.


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