There is nothing like eating freshly baked pastries for breakfast. NOTHING. It (well second to not waking up every morning to my other half's beautiful face) is the thing I miss most about Liverpool. It is
However, this love of croissants does not extend to all croissants. Plain ones I can totally take or leave, chocolate ones do not even get a moment of consideration. It's the almond ones. The sticky, oozy, almondy goodness that fills my morning treat does funny things to my taste buds, brain and tummy. Hannah
And why should I have to?! Umm because I am on a very strict student loan and haven't got the cash to frolic off to Carluccio's whenever I please. That's why.
When I came across this recipe in Dan Lepard's Short and Sweet, I knew I'd hit the baking book jackpot. (Side note - Dan's book sure is sweet, but short it is not. It's bursting with so many yummy recipes, I would definitely recommend that you add it to your collection.) Its basic ingredients are kitchen staples (that includes marzipan for me, I am a marzipan menace I tell you) making this recipe perfect for pastry lovers on a budget and unlike making croissants, this recipe is not eye poppingly time consuming. I have to be honest and say as things stand at the moment I would much rather pay for a croissant every day for the rest of my life than roll the same bit of pastry ten zillion times, but each to their own eh.
The marzipan melts in the oven covering the insides of the dough 'walls' as it were, leaving you with an oozy sweet sticky almond heaven, balanced perfectly by the delightful yet subtle tang of lemon dough.
As with most other pastries, these are best eaten the same day.
400 g strong white flour
1 tsp salt
zest of 2 lemons
1 x 7 g sachet of dried fast action yeast
3 tbsp caster sugar
100 g unsalted butter, melted
250 ml milk (I used semi-skimmed)
1 large free-range egg
oil for kneading (I used 1 cal spray, otherwise known as fry light)
300 g marzipan, grated
a knob of butter, melted, a large handful of toasted slivered almonds and a generous tbsp icing sugar to decorate
1. The night before you want to bake these lemon and marzipan buns, combine the flour, salt, zest of 2 lemons, sugar and yeast in a large mixing bowl.
2. In a jug mix together the melted butter, milk and egg. Add this wet mixture to the dry mixture to form a craggy mess. Cover the large mixing bowl tightly with clingfilm and leave to rest in the fridge over night.
3. The next morning lightly oil your work surface and tip the dough onto it. Knead lightly until the dough comes together nicely and roll it out into a 25 x 50 cm rectangle.
4. Grate the marzipan and spread it out onto the dough rectangle, covering the whole surface right to the edges.
5. Roll up the dough like a roulade, so the shorter side is the one that forms the spiral, the image below may be of more help.
7. Bake the lemon and marzipan buns for 30 minutes, until they are golden brown.
8. Once the buns have cooled use a pastry brush to cover them in melted butter and then sprinkle the buns with toasted slivered almonds (a large handful should be enough) and dust them with icing sugar.
9. Voila! Serve, share, eat and ENJOY :) I certainly did! To me, there is nothing better than gooey marzipan in the middle of a pastry.