Friday 28 October 2022

Boo Bun (Halloween Coconut Pumpkin Bun)

It's end of October - time to bake something ugly but yummy 👻👺 My family does not really celebrate Halloween, but this festive mood really lured me into baking something unusual, something ugly or scary ... hehehe 😨😉 

I baked 10 delicious soft bamboo charcoal buns wrapped with creamy coconut pumpkin custard, and partially coated with pandan matcha cookie crust. The buns may not be beautiful in order to meet the theme, but they were delicious to the palate 😋

Prepare the coconut pumpkin custard and bamboo charcoal bread dough a day ahead. The pandan matcha cookie dough can be prepared on day of shaping.

Raw dough weight: 544g
1st proofing: overnight 
Thaw for 80 minutes before shaping.
Divide into 10 portions, rest for 15 minutes.
2nd proofing:  40 minutes 
Preheat oven to 190℃ for 10 minutes. After closing the oven door, lower the temperature to 180℃ and bake for 15 minutes, further lower to 170℃ for 5 minutes, turn off oven and continue to bake for 2 minutes.

Coconut Pumpkin Custard (285g)

10g coconut oil
30g raw sugar/fine sugar

20g top flour
8g potato starch
40g low-fat milk

1g low sodium salt
65g coconut cream
1 egg, 59g

125g steamed pumpkin


1.Peel pumpkin and cut into chunks (about 145g). Steam for about 20 minutes till softened. Pour away the excess juice, and collect about 125g steamed pumpkin. Mash the softened pumpkin before use.

2. Mix top flour and potato starch to 40g low fat milk into a smooth paste. Add pumpkin paste from Step 1, salt, coconut cream and 1 egg to a batter. Set aside.

3. Heat coconut oil and raw sugar in a pot at medium-low heat for 1~2 minutes. Pour in the batter from Step 2, stir regularly to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the base of the pot.

4. When the batter starts to thicken, lower the heat and stir till a spatula can clear a clean path while moving through the custard.

5. Transfer the coconut pumpkin custard to a clean and dry glass container. Seal the top of custard with a sheet of cling wrap touching the custard surface. After the custard has cooled down, cover with a lid and refrigerate till needed.

Pandan Matcha Cookie Crust (149g)

40g ghee/unsalted butter, softened
20g icing sugar
20g raw sugar

5g fresh pandan paste #
25g beaten egg

35g top flour
5g rice flour
1/4 tsp matcha powder
pinch of salt

# Blend 20g fresh pandan leaves with 50g water, and collect 5g of pandan paste without straining.

1. Cream ghee, icing sugar and raw sugar into a smooth paste. Gradually add the remaining ingredients following the sequence listed.

2. Transfer the cookie dough to a piping bag fitted with a Wilton 10 nozzle. Set aside in room temperature.

Bamboo Charcoal Milk Dough
210g superior bread flour
20g top flour
4g bamboo charcoal powder
35g raw sugar 
1g instant dry yeast 

50g natural yeast, 100% hydration *
30g yudane ^
120g low-fat milk, cold
15g beaten egg
30g water, cold to be added depending on dough condition

3g low-sodium salt

20g ghee/unsalted butter, softened 

* 50g natural yeast can be replaced by 25g each of bread flour and water + 1/8 tsp instant dry yeast. Let the mixture stand for about 1 hour or more till it doubles in volume, before use. You can also keep the mixture in the fridge overnight and thaw it for 1 hour before use.

^ 30g yudane dough is prepared by combining 16g of bread flour with 16g of very hot or boiling water into a sticky dough. Wrap the yudane dough in cling wrap, cool down and refrigerate before use. Use a silicone spatula to scrape out the sticky yudane dough from the cling wrap.

1. Knead the dough following your preferred method. 
For my method, you can refer to my recipe Yudane Milk Bread. After kneading the dough to window pane stage, 

2. After kneading the bread dough to window pane, shape the bread dough into a ball, and keep in a plastic bag coated with a little cooking oil. Keep the dough in a second plastic bag before keeping in the fridge overnight.

3. In the next day, remove the outer plastic bag, invert the dough, and let it thaws at room temperature for about 80 minutes. Keep the coconut pumpkin custard in the fridge till shaping as cold custard is easier to handle than room temperature one.

4. Divide the dough into 10 portions, shape into balls, cover with a towel or plastic sheet, and let them rest for about 15 minutes. Take out the cold coconut pumpkin custard.

5. Flatten the dough to a thickness of about 1cm. Place about 27g of coconut pumpkin custard to the center of the flattened dough. Wrap up the dough, and shape it into a ball.

Place the shaped dough onto a non-stick baking pan and let them proof in a closed oven for about 40 minutes.

6. While waiting, cut some "BOO" stencils. This step is optional.
After the 40 minutes proofing, take out the shaped dough and start to preheat the oven to 190℃ for about 10 minutes.
Place the stencil over shaped dough and sprinkle some bread flour over it. Remove the stencils.

Pipe a few rounds of pandan matcha cookie dough around the "BOO" stenciling.

7. After closing the oven door, lower the temperature to 180℃ and bake for 15 minutes, further lower to 170℃ for 5 minutes, turn off oven and continue to bake for 2 minutes, or till part of the cookie crust turns golden.

8. Let the buns cool down for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving. The cookie crust would become crispy after cooling down.
Keep the unconsumed buns in the fridge. Heat up the buns for about 15 minutes at 100℃, and cool down for 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy 😋

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