Sticky Chocolate Babka Buns
I’m obsessed with babka but I often find that I’m ALL about the crispy top and sort of meh about the doughy middle. That’s why I took all the elements of a gorgeous chocolatey babka braid and made it into BUNS!
The buns are sort of like cardamom buns in their texture - sticky and crispy with a delicate pull-apart dough. The chocolate filling is deep and dark and nutty.
These, my friends, will change your coffee break forever!
Makes 12 buns.
For the dough
7g quick yeast
80g caster sugar
55ml vegetable oil
Pinch fine sea salt
200ml warm water
For the filling
80g coconut oil
80g 74% cacao chocolate
25ml soy milk
80g caster sugar
40g cocoa powder
40g ground almonds
For the egg wash
2tbsp soy milk
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 tsp agave/maple syrup
For the Glaze
40g light brown sugar
To Make the Dough
Place all the ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer with the dough hook attachment. Place on medium speed and allow to knead for 6-8 minutes until smooth. The dough should be quite sticky, so once done kneading, turn off the machine and cover the bowl and leave to prove for an 1.5 hours. Meanwhile make the Filling.
To Make the Filling
Combine the coconut oil, chocolate and soy milk in a double boiler over a medium heat and melt, stirring constantly, until smooth.
Weigh out remaining dry filling ingredients into a bowl and when the wet ingredients are all melted, add to the dry. Stir to combine well then refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Take the dough out of the bowl and place on a lightly floured surface. Slice the dough in half and place one half back into the bowl and cover up.
Take your half of dough and roll it into a rough rectangle about the size of a medium baking tray. Spread half of your chilled filling onto the top of the rectangle, right up to the edges.
Fold the dough over along the length of the rectangle, to form a long thin oblong with all the chocolate filling trapped inside. Slice the oblong along the width into six even strips.
Leaving a few centimetres at the top, slice a long split down the centre of each strip, making sure the two sides stay connected by the folded edge. It should look like a pair of trousers.
Take the two “legs” of the trousers and twist them outwards at least four times. You should now have two very twisty trouser legs with a sliver of chocolate filling visible through the centre of each layer.
Pull one leg upwards and tuck it under the folded “waistband” of the trousers. Pull the other leg upwards and over. You can be quite messy here, the shape isn’t super important. Just make sure the dough forms a nice tight mess of strips, with the ends of the strips tucked under.
Place the buns on a greaseproof lined tray, cover with a tea towel and prepare the other half of the dough in the same way. Once done, leave both trays to prove a second time for another 40-50 minutes. Halfway through proving, preheat the oven to 170c
Mix the egg wash ingredients together and brush it over the proved buns.
Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and crisp around the edges.
While baking, put the glaze ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium low heat. Simmer for around five minutes until you have a nicely thickened glaze.
Once the buns are baked, glaze immediately with a pastry brush and leave to cool for ten minutes before serving.
Serve with a good cup of coffee!