I had been wanting to try this recipe for a while now, and yesterday, as the snow fell and I found myself craving something sweet, I finally gave them a try. Chouquettes, for those who aren’t familiar, are a small French pastry, similar to a cream puff, but without the cream. Instead they are topped with pearl sugar which gives them a beautiful sweet crunch. They are usually sold by the bagful at French bakeries. No one in their right mind would order just one, or could eat just one, for that matter! They are light as clouds and incredibly cute. Like little angel kisses!
It’s World Nutella Day, and what you probably didn’t know is that I won a recipe contest for this special day way back in 2008! I haven’t shared the recipe on this blog, so here you go! It’s weekend, and these buns are the perfect excuse to get baking!
Nutty Nutella Buns with Tia Maria Glaze
Approximately 12 buns
For the dough:
250 ml full- fat milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, beaten
550g flour, plus extra for the kneading and rolling
2 packets (7g each) active dry yeast
80g caster sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
or the filling:
75g chopped hazelnuts
110g chopped walnuts
For the egg wash:
1 egg, beaten
2 tbsps milk
For the glaze: 150g icing sugar
3 tbsps Tia Maria
- In a small pan, heat the milk and the butter until the butter is melted. Take the pan off the heat, add the vanilla and let cool to lukewarm. Whisk in the beaten eggs.
- In a big bowl, mix the flour, yeast, sugar, cinnamon and salt.
- Add the cooled milk mixture to the dry ingredients and mix well with a floured wooden spoon. Flour your hands and dig into the bowl, kneading the dough inside the bowl. The dough will be sticky, so keep your hands well- floured!
- Transfer the dough to a well- floured surface and knead it there for a further five minutes, sprinkling with more flour if necessary. Form the dough into a ball.
- Wash out your bowl with hot water, dry it and sprinkle some flour both in the bowl and on your dough. Return the dough to the bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and a tea cloth. Set the bowl in a warm place. I usually put mine in a sunny window next to the heater, and I even place the bowl on top of a cushion! Dough needs to be loved, you see. Allow the dough to rise for 1 hour.
- Punch down your dough and knead it for about a minute. Roll it out on a well- floured surface to a rectangle of about 27 X 45cm. It should be about 1cm thick.
- Spread the Nutella evenly over the dough and sprinkle with the chopped nuts. It takes quite a bit of effort to spread the Nutella! I did this with a the help of a knife, and with my fingers!
- Roll the dough from the long side and slice it into pieces of 4cm.
- Line a 26 X 37 rectangular baking pan with baking paper and place the buns in the pan leaving enough space for the dough to rise (about 1/2 cm apart). Cover the pan with plastic wrap and the tea towel. Allow the buns to rise an additional 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 200C.
- Make an egg wash by whisking the egg with the milk. Brush this over the rolls and pop them in the oven for 30 minutes. Check half way through to see if they are not getting too brown. Cover wth foil if necessary!
- Remove the rolls from the baking pan by lifting them up with the baking paper. Set them on a rack (baking paper and all) to cool slightly.
- Make the glaze by whisking the sugar with the Tia Maria.
- Drizzle the glaze over the buns.
- Try to stop yourself from eating the whole lot!
Because it’s almost weekend, and because I’m sure you need a few easy and delicious cookie recipes up your sleeve in preparation for the upcoming holiday season, today I will be sharing my minty chocolate cookie drops with you!