Coconut Sweet Soft Buns- 65C Tangzhong Method

Last week, someone had asked me if I had tried any of the Tangzhong (water roux method) bread recipe from what has now become the ‘tangzhong bread bible’, 65C Tangzhong Bread by Yvonne C.

The method documented in the book is a true water roux method where a little bread flour is mixed with water and heated to 65C. This resultant liquid starch is then added to the rest of the bread flour to yield a super soft and fluffy bread.

The sweet soft buns I had made earlier, uses a variation of the water roux.
Yvonne C’s recipes are easy to follow. Although some may feel intimidated by the process of cooking the flour to precisely 65C,  this is really not too difficult if you have a candy thermometer to help you monitor the temperature.
The water roux prepared this way is wetter and more watery than the my previous recipe. With so much moisture, I was looking forward to a softer and fluffier bread. However, unfortunately, the recipe calls for more flour (almost 30% more) and very little tebutter. The xture of these buns, although, still relatively soft, were much coarser and drier compared to my previous recipe. The only consolation is that the buns were wrinkle free. I do wonder, however, if I had not cooked the water roux correctly. I will try to repeat this again to confirm.
I have chosen to fill these buns with grated coconut cooked in palm sugar syrup. Together with red bean paste, the grated coconut filled bun has to be one of those local classic buns we grew up with. These can still be found in neighbourhood bakery stores – often sold in a 2×3 block. I don’t think these old fashioned filled buns will ever go obsolete but as the younger generation becomes more spoilt for choices with BreadTalks’ fancy flavours and the wide selection of western breads that are easily accessible to us today, these less stylish dough will most likely not stir up as much excitement as they did for us during our younger days. For me, I will gladly still eat them for breakfast every morning….

Tangzhong (Water roux)
Bread flour          50g
Water                  250g

Bread flour          210g
Plain flour           56g
Milk powder       20g
Castor sugar        42g
Salt                      1/2 tsp
Yeast                   6g

Egg                     1
Water                  85g
Tangzhong         84g
Unsalted butter   22g

Coconut Filling :
Grated coconut         250g

Gula Melaka             50g

Salt                           Pinch

Pandan Leaves         4 pieces
Water                      80g
Method :
1. Mix A together and cook over low heat until 65C – stirring all the time while cooking. When it is cooked, the mixture should look like starchy glue and you should be able to see the stirring lines in the dough. Remove from heat and cool down at room temperature.
2. Tie the Pandan leaves into a bit knot and boil it with gula melaka and water until gula melaka is completely dissolved. Remove the pandan leave and strain the syrup in to a heavy saucepan. Add grated coconut and cook until mixture is dry and fragrant.
3. Mix B with C in a mixing bowl and using a dough hook stir until mixture forms a dough. Add D and continue mixing at medium to high speed (about 15-20mins) until the dough is no longer tacky to touch. At this point, stretch the dough to check that it will not break easily ( window pane test).
4. Transfer dough into an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let it prove for 40mins.
5. Divide dough into small portions of 40g each. Roll each small portion into a smooth ball and all to prove for another 10mins.
6. Flatten each small ball and wrap with a tbsp of grated coconut filling. Seal the dough to form a ball again.
7. Let the buns prove for another 40 mins.
8. Brush with egg solution and bake at 175C for 15mins until golden brown.