Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lemon Buns

At Easter my mom baked both Paska and these Lemon Buns. These are one of my most favourite yeast breads. The dough is twisted into figure eights and a teaspoon of lemon curd is placed in each little dip the twist makes before they rise and are baked.  Once baked they are finished off with a drizzle of icing. 

Ingredients for the bun dough
  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 10 - 12 cups flour
  • 2 cups milk, scalded
  • 1 cup lard ( I use Tender flake brand)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups warm water
Lemon Curd: ( make this while the bun dough is rising)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 egg yolks, well beaten
  • juice of 1 lemon and enough water to make 6 tablespoons
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
Method for lemon curd:
  1. In a small saucepan, mix sugar,salt and cornstarch.
  2. Stir in lemon zest, lemon juice and water. Stirring constantly cook over medium heat until the mixture thickens and is slightly bubbly.
  3. Beat egg yolks well. Slowly pour a small amount of the hot mixture over the yolks, whisking immediately so the eggs don't begin to cook. Pour this combined mixture back into the sauce pan with the remaining hot lemon mixture and cook a few more minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Remove from heat and add butter. Stir well and cover with plastic wrap until ready to spoon onto buns.
Method for the bun dough:
  1. In a large bowl stir together dry instant yeast and 2 cups flour.
  2. Scald milk and add lard. Stir until lard is completely melted. ( I cut lard into small pieces so they melt faster)
  3. Stir sugar and salt into hot milk mixture.
  4. Beat eggs well and add the warm water.  Pour hot milk mixture into eggs stirring well.
  5. Add all the liquid to the yeast and flour mixture. Stir well. Then incorporate at least 6-7 cups of flour to make a soft sticky dough. Using the remaining several cups of flour continue adding as you knead until your dough is smooth, but still very soft. Do not over knead this dough. Over kneading will cause these buns to loose their nice soft texture.
  6. Cover and place in a warm draft free area to rise until double in bulk. Approximately 45 minutes. 
  7.  Punch down dough. Pinch off small pieces of dough and form a circle and then twist into a figure  eight. Place bun onto parchment lined baking sheets leaving room between for  them to rise.
  8. Drop a teaspoon of lemon curd into the centre of each end of the eight. Allow buns to rise another 45 minutes.
  9. Bake in 375ยบ oven for 12-15 minutes until lightly browned. Remove to cooking rack
  10. Once completely cooled drizzle with an icing made by stirring together 1 1/2 cups of icing sugar, 1 tbsp melted butter, 1/4 tsp vanilla and a few drops of warm water at a time until you have a thin but not watery icing. If it gets too thin add a bit more icing sugar. 

22 comments:

  1. I am starting to wonder if this is NOT a good blog for me.. First the pull apart lemon bread.. now THIS? anything bread-like and lemony is a sure winner for me.. Guess I will be experimenting with these also! lol.. LOVE your page!

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  2. Can this be made with veg. shortening instead of lard?

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    1. 1. Lard is preferrable in this recipe since it makes the dough very soft and moist. If you wish to substitute with shortening you may. Tenderflake is a brand name. You are simply looking for Lard...the brand does not matter.

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  3. pinch off a small piece of dough to form a snack? Could we be SLIGHTLY more specific as to the size of the "pinch", please?

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    1. I changed this to say..form a circle. The pinch refers to pulling off a piece of dough rather than the amount. Think about the size of an egg of dough.

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  4. Lemon.... bread.... two of my favourite things in the world ! This sounds wonderful. A question: the lard (Tenderflake) _ I'm wondering if this is something you get in the USA - is it already flaked. I grate my block of lard - would this be the same thing? And is it then a cup of the 'grated' lard, or the block of lard (we always work in weights over here (Scotland), so it can be hard for me to work out what you guys want :)
    Anne x

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    1. @ Homeschool, Tenderflake is a namebrand of lard in Canada. So it's 1 cup of solid lard, which you can then grate or break into small pieces. Hope that helps.

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    2. Yes ...Tenderflake is simply a namebrand available in Canada. You can use any solid lard brand.

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  5. Looks delicious! I would love to make these for Easter, but would like to know if it is okay to use shortening instead of lard, how large a pinch of dough to use, and approximately how many buns the recipes makes. Also, would these buns freeze well (I would freeze them without the icing)? Thanks so much for another terrific recipe!

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    1. Yes...I would freeze these buns without icing. It actually works really well to freeze the buns on pans for about 30 minutes and then slip them into freezer bags. This way the very soft buns will not crush. Let them thaw outside the bag though...so they don't get damp on the bottom.

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  6. I can imagine the work that has gone into adding more specific measurements and instructions to the recipes that have been passed down from mothers and grandmothers. So, we'll forgive you if you didn't specify how much a pinch should be. Traditional mennonite recipes don't have specific measurements, it's more like, "use enough flour to make a good soft dough" and the method is often something like, "mix in usual manner and bake in moderate oven until done". KUDOS to you ladies for preserving these recipes making them user friendly for us to refer to after we no longer have the luxury of looking over mom's shoulder as she mixes "enough" flour for a good soft dough in the "usual" manner. THANK YOU!

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    1. This makes me smile because you are absolutely right! My mother's recipes used terms like 5 cents worth of yeast and "heaping" or "scant" is often used. I like Lovella's description - about the size of an egg - that was a Mom measurement too - and it's actually fairly accurate!

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  7. I would love to make these for Easter as well. What I am not quite understanding is the formation of the buns. When I pinch off the dough and form it into a circle, is is like a donut, with a hole in the center? If so, when you place the figure-eight dough on the pan and place the lemon curd in each hole, are you actually placing the curd on the pan? Does the dough then rise around it? This is the part that needs a little clarification for me (as well as the size of dough to pinch off, as has already been asked). Thanks for your help!

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    1. Since my recipe is exactly like Kathy's mom's recipe I will speak to the forming of the buns. Kathy might make her figure eights really small and then no curd would fall through. I let my figure eights rise first and then put the curd on just before baking. By that time the dough will have risen together.

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  8. Kathy - these look delicious and would be lovely on the Easter dinner table! I love anything with lemon - thanks for the recipe!

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  9. These look deliscious! Can't wait to try them!!

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  10. My son and I made these on Sunday. Oh, my goodness are they wonderful. It makes a HUGE batch of buns. The yeast roll is incredibly tender and delicious. The curd is wonderful. I did make a double batch of curd and, using one teaspoon on each end of the buns, ended up with only a tiny amount left over. I also make a double batch of the icing and again used most of it (the buns were not overly glazed). We will definitely be making them again. Next time, my son would like to try using orange marmalade in place of the lemon curd.

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  11. Hi Kathy! My goodness, I made these buns back in May (love, love, LOVED them!) and featured them on my blog. I have to tell you that these buns are my #1 most viewed post! Thank you so much for this fantastic recipe!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed them! What an interesting story about how many viewers saw it on PInterest. You have a lovely blog.

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  12. My mom made these, too, and your picture evokes wonderful memories! I have trouble forming the figure 8; the circle idea makes sense. But, how do you prevent the filling from leaking out the bottom?
    I have my last panful of lemon buns in the oven right now, and while the flavour is good, I will use this recipe next time. Mom used cooked lemon pie filling for her buns; I prefer to make my own whenever I can. Thank you!

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