Coconut Bread Rolls: A Sweet Fusion of Traditional Flavours
The culinary world is a broad landscape of flavours, techniques, and traditions.From the bustling streets of Bangkok to the tranquil countryside of Provence, every region boasts its own set of unique ingredients and cooking methods. Among the myriad of choices available to a culinary enthusiast, there's a certain joy in blending flavours from different parts of the world. One such delightful fusion is the coconut bread roll – a delectable treat that marries the aromatic goodness of coconut with the softness of freshly baked bread.
Origin and Inspiration
The origin of the coconut bread roll is a fusion in itself. The use of coconut and palm sugar hints at Southeast Asian culinary traditions, notably from countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand, where these ingredients are staples. On the other hand, bread rolls, with their soft, pillowy texture, are a universal favourite, found in many cultures worldwide.
The Heart of the Recipe: Coconut and Palm Sugar
Desiccated coconut, when soaked, becomes a soft, flavourful base that holds the texture and sweetness of the bread filling. Palm sugar, with its rich caramel-like taste, complements the coconut, lending it a depth of flavour. When these two are combined and heated together, they meld into a sweet, textured filling that becomes the heart of our coconut bread rolls.
The Bread: A Canvas of Flavours
The bread roll itself is not just a vessel for the coconut and palm sugar. It is a canvas, bringing in layers of flavour and colour. While half the dough remains a pristine white, the other half takes on a gentle green hue with the addition of pandan paste – a fragrant leaf extract commonly used in Southeast Asian desserts. For those seeking an extra splash of colour, a hint of yellow food colouring can be added to achieve a more vibrant shade.
Bringing It All Together
Creating the coconut bread rolls requires a mix of patience and technique. The dough is first mixed with precision, ensuring the yeast activates and the dough reaches the perfect consistency. After a resting period, the white and green dough is flattened and filled with the sumptuous coconut-palm sugar mixture. The final product, once baked, is a beautiful, colourful bread roll with a sweet, tropical filling that transports you straight to the beaches of Bali or Phuket.
In a world where fusion cuisine often brings together the most unexpected combinations, the coconut bread roll stands out as a testament to how flavours from different parts of the world can come together in harmony. Whether enjoyed with a cup of tea, as a breakfast treat, or a dessert, these rolls promise a bite of tropical paradise in every morsel.
Coconut-Palm Sugar Filling:
1. In a mixing bowl, measure out 100g desiccated coconut.
2. Pour hot water over the coconut, cover, and set aside for 30 minutes.
3. Chop 100g of palm sugar into small pieces and set it aside.
4. Drain the coconut using a strainer. Press the coconut gently to remove any excess water.
5. In a pan, combine the coconut and chopped palm sugar. Cook over medium to low heat.
6. Once the palm sugar has fully melted and incorporated with the coconut, remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Coconut Bread Rolls:
1. In a mixing bowl, combine 500g all-purpose flour, 7g instant yeast, 40g sugar, and 6g salt.
2. Mix 125g thick coconut milk with 125g of water, resulting in 250g of liquid ingredients. Add this coconut milk mixture to the bowl.
3. Crack in 1 egg.
4. Begin mixing at the lowest speed for 1 minute.
5. After 1 minute, increase the mixer speed and continue for an additional 5 minutes.
6. Add 30g unsalted butter to the mixture and continue mixing for another 6 minutes.
7. Conduct a window pane test on the dough to ensure elasticity.
8. Divide the dough into two equal portions.
9. Place one half of the dough back into the mixer. Add pandan paste to the dough in the mixer for flavour and colour. If desired, add yellow food colouring to achieve a specific shade.
10. Mix until the colour is evenly distributed throughout the dough.
11. Divide the uncoloured (white) dough into 14 equal portions, each weighing 30g.
12. Similarly, divide the coloured dough into 14 equal portions, each weighing 30g.
13. Roll each of the 28 portions into balls, covered, and let them rest for 15 minutes.
14. After resting, flatten each white dough ball, fill with the palm sugar and coconut mixture, and seal it.
15. Flatten each green dough ball and wrap it around the filled white dough ball, sealing the edges.
16. Place each ball in a cupcake liner and let them rise until they have doubled in size.
17. Brush the tops with milk.
18. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 15 minutes.
19. Dust the freshly baked coconut rolls with powdered sugar.
There you have it! Perfectly baked Coconut Bread Rolls with a sumptuous Coconut-Palm Sugar filling. Enjoy!