About the author: Jane Burkinshaw is a professional photographer and passionate about all things photography related. Jane specialises in portrait photography and runs photography courses.

Chelsea Buns and a spot of food photography

I love Chelsea buns - that lovely sweet, stretchy bread, caramelised brown sugar, delicate cinnamon and fruity sprinkles of raisins! Still warm from the oven and perfect with a cup of coffee, or a glass of cold milk if you are my 12 year old son!

I surprised the family with these, as I am rarely seen in the kitchen baking from scratch. My husband, Nic, is a great cook and finds it relaxing, so we have a long established habit of letting him rule the roost in terms of food shopping and cooking. I can cook the old student staples of spag bol, cottage pie, chilli con carne, lasagne and toad in the hole, but my confidence runs out beyond that. I recently went on a Taste of Spain cookery course and discovered that I can cook (find out what delights I made in a separate post about this). This newly discovered confidence and interest, along with a massive love of food photography, has given me a new zest for home baking.

I won't pretend to be perfect or experienced, far from it, but I thought it might broaden the appeal of these foodie posts, if they extend beyond nice photographs of food and share the recipes  I use too.

So, here goes, my first proper foodie recipe post.

Ingredients:

For the enriched white dough:
500g strong white plain flour
1 tsp fast acting dried yeast
100g mixed dried fruit
2 tbsp milk powder
2 tbsp white sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 medium eggs
200ml water

For sprinkling on the rolled out dough:

3/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1tbsp runny honey
1 tbsp golden syrup


We have a bread machine and have worked out that the 45 minute pizza dough setting creates an amazing and versatile bread dough. So Nic chucked in all the ingredients (except the currants, which should have gone in at this stage) and left it to do its thing. It was sat in there for a good hour or so after the programme finished and had already risen quite bit when I got it out (1).

I knocked the dough about a bit and then rolled it out into an oblong approx 20x50cm (2). In hindsight I should have rolled it a bit thinner and bigger, as my buns were quite chunky!

I then sprinkled the sugar and currants on (better late than never to include them!) and drizzled with the honey and golden syrup (3 & 4). I rolled the dough into a long sausage and sliced into 5cm mini sausages with a very sharp knife (5).


I placed the individual sections into an ovenproof dish that would give them plenty of space to expand (6) and then left them to rise for about another hour (7). I baked them in the oven for 15-20 minutes until they were golden brown and firm on the top.

At this stage you could brush them with a little glaze of sugar dissolved in water or alternatively apricot jam for a slightly stickier option!

Once they'd cooled for a short while I transferred them to a wire tray (8) and a little while later separated them into individual buns by pulling them apart and then dusted them with icing sugar. Et voila!


They were a real hit, especially with Sam, who was quite cross with me this morning when I told him he couldn't have one for breakfast as they'd all gone! Will definitely be making these again soon.

I offer commercial photography services, including food, on an hourly, half day or full day basis. I can shoot in a purpose built natural light studio or on location. If you would like to have a chat about your photography requirements please get in touch.

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