This week’s recipe is big and bold, and I make no apologies for it. I love creating refined desserts with delicate finishing touches, but sometimes you can’t beat a big messy cream bun. Cream and jam buns are a nostalgic childhood treat for me; soft and plump and full of soothing delicious flavour. It is no secret my favourite combination of texture and flavour is sponge, jam and cream – a genoise or Victoria sponge is my death-row dessert. It’s the simple things for me, and paired with a decent cuppa, it is blissful.
This is a take on classic finger buns from the local bakery we used to visit as children. They were sandwiched to the brim with thick cream and served with a tiny dollop of jam; really, it was a dot of jam and, in my opinion, it was never enough.
When I think about flavour combinations I love, it seems to always steer back to those soothing simple flavours I grew up with, and this recipe is a hybrid of those classic cream buns and another childhood favourite: coconut and jam cake.
Coconut paired with fruity berry flavours is a beautiful combination. It is kind of tropical and sweet, but sharp and comforting, all at the same time. These buns are made with a type of milk yeast bread dough; with milk and milk powder added to give a gorgeous lightness and a beautiful crumb. The filling: a soft and cloud-like coconut cream, which is subtle in flavour but with a perfect balance of sweetness. A few dollops of raspberry jam completes the dish and provides just enough tang.
This makes enough for eight large finger buns, and they are indeed a generous portion. The dough does need to be left to rise and prove, like any yeast dough, so patience here is needed. Slice and fill your buns just before serving – and don’t be afraid to get messy.
Recipe: Coconut jam finger buns