I have baked several batches of these buns recently, they have proved to be very popular indeed. Belgian Buns normally cost around £1.20 for a two pack in the supermarket. This recipe makes between 12 and 14 buns and costs £2.61 for ingredients, much cheaper and tastier than the supermarket version.
You can vary the filling to suit your tastes, I've used sultanas, cinnamon and sugar here but have previously spread a small pot of ready made custard over the dough before sprinkling on the fruit and cinnamon as a cheats creme patisserie filling.
450g strong white bread flour 32p
7g sachet fast action yeast 12p
50g sugar 4p
1 tsp salt 1p
2 large free range eggs, beaten 34p
50g butter, melted and cooled to room temperature 29p
150ml room temperature milk 7p
180g dried fruit 32p
50g sugar 4p
2 tsp cinnamon 3p
For the icing:
200g icing sugar 34p
4 - 6 teaspoons of water
Glace cherries, halved 69p
In a big bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, make a well in the centre then add the beaten eggs, milk and melted butter. Stir until combined then knead in a stand mixer or on a lightly floured surface for around 10 minutes until smooth and stretchy.
Put the kneaded dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film. Leave in a warm place for about an hour or until doubled in size.
Line two large baking trays. Turn out your risen dough and knock back. The dough will be quite stiff. Roll out to a large rectangle, around 45cm x 30cm. Now, scatter your dried fruit over the dough in an even layer. Mix the cinnamon and sugar together then sprinkle over the dough.
Starting with the longest side, roll your rectangle into a big sausage and pinch the join to seal. Rock back and forth to get a good shape, and slice into 12 or 14 portions. Put the dough swirls cut side up on the lined trays, leaving room for them to spread. Cover with clingfilm and leave to prove for another 30 - 45 minutes.
Whilst the dough is proving preheat your oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F/Gas Mark 4. Bake the dough swirls in the preheated oven for around 15 minutes. Keep an eye on them from about 12 minutes because they can go from golden to burnt very quickly. Cool the buns on a wire rack.
Once the buns have cooled completely you can ice them. Measure out your icing sugar and gradually add the water, a teaspoon at a time, until it’s a thick white paste. You don't want the icing to be too thin or it will run off the buns or be too transparent. If your icing is too thin, just add a little more icing sugar to get the consistency that you want. Spread icing over the top of each bun then put half a cherry on top. These buns are best enjoyed the day you bake them, you can enjoy them the day after too, just keep them in an air tight container overnight.