Ok hands up who else goes into Greggs and buys a belgian bun? *raises hand high* BUT did you know that they should have a yummy gooey layer of lemon curd in the middle? Greggs skimp on this and so I find them rather dry and quite frankly a little tasteless. I will still go in there and buy one tho cos they are still my all time favourite cake.
Anyway the Greggs belgian buns are 20.5 syns EACH. Oooft. That is a hell of a lot of syns for a cake. I really craved one the other week so I thought I know I will check my grandparents recipe book and see if they had a recipe as I think they had a recipe for practically any cake going. They certainly was the best cake makers in our family. And YES they had a recipe. Now all I had to do was convert a few ingredients as back when they did this recipe book it was long before I was even born (I am 34 so you can imagine how old this book may be). A little converting done, time to experiment. And SUCCESS!! The result was spot on.
I have made belgian buns quite a lot in my baking days purely being my favourite cake it was a must have thing to do, however I used to follow a recipe I did in school, our 3rd cookery lesson and we was thrown into the deep end with belgian buns, it was such a simple recipe too but since moving I can’t find my old school books. Probably still in one of the many boxes I never unpacked and sitting in the barn or in the loft. But I am glad I can always rely on my grandparents for a cake recipe.
These are not as large as the Greggs version but I would say they are roughly half the size? Maybe a little bigger, its been a while since I brought one so I can’t really compare anymore. However they are much lower in syns and you could in fact enjoy 2 within your syn limit if you felt you really wanted to indulge.
Some recommended items from our kitchen to make this dish…
- Double sided dry and liquid measuring spoons for times when you need to measure both liquid and dry ingredients.
- Mixing bowls are always wanted in this household and these stackable ones save so much space in our cupboards.
- Rolling pin, we use a stainless steel one as I make a lot of pastry and it can be put in the fridge to prevent pasty from getting so warm from warm hands and being handled so much. Best purchase I ever made for pastry.
- Baking trays, we have separate ones for cake items and others for things like veg and meat etc so we have more than one set floating around in our house.
- Cake cooling racks, so handy to have.
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Makes 14 – 5.5 syns each, or 6 syns each with the cherry on top.
- 225g strong bread flour – 39 syns (Check own brands as syns vary)
- 7g easy instant yeast – 1 syn (this is the little instant yeast sachet you can get)
- 90ml whole milk – 3 syns
- 50g caster sugar – 10 syns
- 25g salted butter from a block, left at room temperature – 9.5 syns
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons lemon curd – 4 syns (Check own brands as syns vary)
- 25g sultanas – 3.5 syns
- 2 tablespoons icing sugar – 6 syns mixed with water to make a thin icing
- Glace cherries, halved – 0.5 syn per half (Optional)
- Warm the milk to lukewarm, if its too hot it will kill the yeast.
- In a mixing bowl add the flour and yeast and stir to combine.
- Add the sugar and butter and gently rub the butter in like you would if you were making pastry/ crumble topping making sure not to work it too much, just enough to make sure the butter isn’t a solid lump.
- Make a well in the middle and add the lukewarm milk and egg and mix to a dough.
- Tip the dough out and knead for 5 minutes until its elasticated, try not to over work it.
- Place the dough in a bowl and cover with a tea towel and prove for 2 hours in a warm place until doubled in size.
- Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to roughly 1cm in thickness and a rectangle shape.
- Warm the lemon curd with a little water to make it go further and easier to spread and spread across the dough, sprinkle over the sultanas.
- From the wide side of the dough tightly roll the dough up into a sausage shape and cut into 14 even slices.
- Place on a baking tray that has been lightly sprayed with frylight with a little space between them as they will grow and again let them prove for 1 hour under a tea towel in a warm place.
- They should have doubled in size. Move them a little if they are touching too much as they will grow some more when baking.
- Bake in a pre heated oven 180°C fan for 10 – 15 minutes until golden.
- Take out the oven and cool on a wire rack.
- Drizzle over the icing sugar on each one and place half a cherry on top of each bun if using.
- They will keep in an air tight container for up to 4 days. We have never had them last long enough to freeze them but you should be able to freeze them (without the icing and cherry on the top) if you wrap a piece of baking paper round them before placing in a sandwich bag.