It is a well known fact that nobody can say no to an iced bun. They’re nothing special, but the sweet simplicity of an iced bun is irresistible. Maybe it’s the way that the soft, enriched white bun with its layer of sweet icing is quite simply ‘enough’. Enough softness, enough chewiness, enough sugary sweetness. And ‘enough’ is all anyone really wants from life, isn’t it?
Maybe it’s their magical powers of taking us back to our childhood. Every time I make iced buns they are greeted with delighted cries of “I haven’t had these since I was a kid”. I know I certainly have many fond memories of eating iced buns as a child. They remind me of family picnics, of Sunday afternoons and of squashing around my grandmas kitchen table, elbow to elbow with my cousins.
- 325g strong white flour
- 150g warm milk
- 40g butter
- 40g caster sugar
- 5g salt
- 10g fresh yeast
- 1 egg
- 200g icing sugar
- Egg wash (beaten egg with a pinch of salt and a dash of milk)
- To make your dough, place the dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the egg and butter. Dissolve the yeast into the warm milk and pour in to the bowl. Mix for approximately 7 minutes, until a soft and elastic dough has formed. This dough will feel a little sticky.
- Leave to prove in a warm place for a couple of hours. Sweet doughs will often take a little longer to prove because of the extra fat, but just be patient.
- When the dough has risen, turn it out onto a floured work surface. Divide your dough into equal portions. I scale mine to 50g as I prefer a daintier bun, but if you like a larger bun weigh out larger portions.
- Using your hand and as little flour as possible, roll each portion of dough into a ball. Then roll each ball into a sausage shape.
- Place the shaped dough on a lined baking tray. They need to be about 1.5cm away from each other to ensure they batch. This simply means that they touch at the sides whilst they bake. It means you get soft fluffy edges and it also encourages the buns to be taller.
- Cover the buns with a clean tea towel and leave to rise for 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees C or gas mark 6.
- Before you bake the buns, give them an egg wash to make sure they come out shiny and golden.
- Bake the buns for 10-15 minutes. They should be well risen and golden in colour.
- Whilst the buns are in the oven, make the icing by adding water a drop at a time to icing sugar. It needs to be quite thick and spreadable.
- Allow the buns to cool,completely before icing them.