Saturday, October 16, 2010

World Bread Day 2010 - Chelsea buns with fennel and apricot


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Zorra of 1 umruhen bitte is once again hosting World Bread Day. All you have to do is bake any kind of bread and post about it on Saturday, October 16, 2010. Easy!

I had been eyeing up Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Chelsea Buns with Fennel and Apricot for a while. I love dried apricots, and the combination of fennel and apricot seemed intriguing. The recipe from The Guardian is here.

To be honest, I wasn't overly enamoured of the fennel and apricot combination. I found the aniseed flavour to be a little overwhelming - maybe because I used ground fennel instead of fennel seeds?

If I made these again, I would change the method as follows:

  • I would use less fennel (as I was using ground fennel);
  • I would activate the yeast separately before putting it into the dough mixture - I found the rising of the dough to be rather lacklustre;
  • I would use an eggwash to brown the dough on top, because I ended up with slightly overbrown bottoms and pale tops on my buns;
  • I would probably ice the buns with water icing as opposed to using the milk glaze, which didn't add a lot, in my view.

Thanks to Zorra for being our host for World Bread Day once again, and you will be able to check out the roundup of breads from all over the world shortly on her site.

15 comments:

Scraps said...

You could also try placing a cookie sheet under the baking pan when you put it into the oven--it'll insulate the bottom a bit more to prevent over-browning.

Ellie (Almost Bourdain) said...

Fennel and apricot! I love this flavour combo.

Art and Appetite said...

OH MY! That is totally diving!

Happy Cook said...

Wowo i love the combination with fennel though i would have never thought about it.

Conor @ Hold the Beef said...

What an intriguing combination, though as I'm not a big aniseed fan I fear I may have the same reaction as you.

adele said...

Interesting. I think my English muffin recipe came by way of Fearnly-Whittingstall (the name's quite a mouthful, isn't it?), and it's a good one. Fennel and apricot... I'll have to keep this in mind.

Barbara Bakes said...

Too bad the fennel was overwhelming. They look scrumptious.

Deliciously Suite said...

I've never thought of that combination before. But I do love apricot!

zorra said...

Your buns look gorgeous. But I understand you didn't love too much the fennel seeds, me would neither. ;-) Thank you for your participation in World Bread Day.

Beth said...

I've loved reading all the great bread recipes this weekend. Thanks for your honest posting. I love apricot, but I'm not sure about combining it with fennel. Great suggestions for next time!

jillbert said...

This was a daring choice! I love apricot, but I'm not a big fennel fan. They look pretty!

natalia said...

Ciao ! I love the look of your rolled bread ! The flavours soud wonderful!

Heavenly Housewife said...

I love chelsea buns, though I've never made them. I simply adore this combination of fennel and apricot you put together, I bet it tastes magnificent.
*kisses* HH

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Girl, I'm on such an apricot kick at the moment (dried Turkish apricots that is). So these are so singing my tune! :D

Elizabeth said...

Oh!! That's too bad about the fennel not working so well with the apricots.

The rolls LOOK beautiful though.

I had that problem with overdone bottoms on sweet rolls too - I now bake any bread that has sugar in it on the top shelf of the oven.

(I just looked at Hugh F-W's recipe and WOW that's a lot of fennel seed he calls for. Thanks for the heads-up to reduce the amount.)