Without a doubt, these look extremely impressive and I am sure you have no reservation agreeing with me.
These floss buns are light and fluffy, easy to enjoy, with a great and tasty floss topping on top it. Before I go into the details of making and description of these floss buns, let me digress a little by stating my blatant source of inspiration.
Floss buns are made popular by Singapore bakery franchise, Breadtalk, as floss buns are their signature buns. I grew up eating these buns, and I really enjoy the lightness of the floss on top of it. In the bakery, I will deliberately look out for the buns with the most floss, and occasionally, I will even buy it home for my family members! The floss bun is one of my favourites of the buns from Breadtalk!
Honestly though, as a not really affluent member of the society, I am shocked by the rising prices of bread. The price of these buns are increasing non-stop, although understandably why. Afterall, as a baker myself (albeit small scale and home-based ), I can also feel the pinch of the rising cost of raw ingredients required for baking. However, I decided to rather make some myself for the love that comes with homemade food can never be replaced.
The secret recipe behind these floss buns will definitely be difficult to unravel, and as such today I am really not replicating the exact floss bun, but trust me, these floss buns that I am introducing to you are delicious as well.
These buns are extremely soft and keeps well due to the addition of water roux or tangzhong. Honestly, I am really unsure about the origins of water roux or tangzhong, but I am really glad for its invention. I suspect its either by a Japanese or a Chinese.
Nonetheless, I am glad that the method for making this tangzhong is extremely easy and fuss free. This additional step makes this bread way fluffier and softer. Here as you can see the insides of the bun:
After making the buns, I add a really nice layer of transparent mayonnaise. This is often seen in some Chinese breakfast shops I assume. I added no more than 4 tablespoons of sugar in total because afterall, I am utilizing it as a paste and not for flavour. You can use of course, store bought mayonnaise as well or butter, but transparent mayonnaise is different. It is a way healthier substitute and it does not affect the aesthetics of your floss buns. At least for me of course, as I really detest mayonnaise ( except in some cases or Japanese mayonnaise ), especially seeing how it’s made and its fat content.
Honestly though, it might get slightly troublesome as you will be using your stove not once, but twice. The results however, will prove that this bun is definitely worth the effort. Just look at how amazing they look before they are assembled.
After topping with transparent mayonnaise, or any other toppings that I have suggested, coat the bun with some nice floss. The floss preference is really up to you. You’re your own boss in the kitchen!
I do see Breadtalk coming up with other variants such as spicy floss and seaweed floss. Alongside, companies that sell floss are starting to sell floss of more variants as well including seaweed floss and fish floss. Its really up to you. For instance, if you would like to make a halal version, you can use fish or chicken floss.
I would like to emphasize that the floss will be the main star of this bun, and the quality of the floss can impact greatly the taste of your bun.
Furthermore, in this recipe I will be using my electronic stand mixer for this as my hands were really tired from working out. You can definitely hand knead it of course, and I will provide alternate instructions for that. I really enjoy the convenience of the stand mixer however. I just let it mix while I get onto things such as cleaning up and making the transparent mayonnaise!
Let’s now get to the recipe!
Overall Difficulty: 3/5
Time Taken: Less than 3 hours, inclusive of the time taken to knead, bake and for the dough to rise.
Ingredients Required in sequence of what will be made first ( water roux / tangzhong, ) and last ( transparent mayonnaise ) :Tangzhong / Water Roux:
- 1/3 cup of plain flour
- 1/3 cup of milk
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon of water
Soft and Fluffy Tangzhong Bread:
- 2 + 1/4 cups of bread flour
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon of all purpose plain flour
- 1/3 cup of caster sugar
- 3 teaspoons of instant dry yeast
- 1/8 teaspoon of salt
- 1 large egg at room temperature ( mine weighs 55g including the shell ), lightly beaten
- 30g of butter, softened at room temperature
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of water
- Tangzhong / Water Roux
- Extra milk ( for coating ) and flour ( for surface )
Since there are other toppings available, I will just post the link for the transparent mayonnaise down below if you would like to use it:
Transparent Mayonnaise Recipe
Making TangZhong / Water Roux:
1. Mix together the plain flour, milk and water in a saucepan and heat at medium low heat. Constantly whisk it until you form a thick, paste like mixture ( picture available below under notes ). Once it has thickened, turn off the stove and set aside, allowing it to cool while you make the buns.
Making the Buns:
2. Lightly grease a large mixing bowl.
3. Mix together all purpose flour, bread flour, caster sugar, and salt. Stir until well combined.
4. Add in 3 teaspoons of yeast and stir well.
5. Add in the lightly beaten egg and the water, and start stirring. As the dough starts to come together, add the tangzhong or water roux, and continue stirring until the dough comes together.
6a) If using a stand mixer, use a dough hook attachment at medium speed. Beat for about 4-5 minutes until the dough starts to become elastic, and then add in the butter. Continue beating for about 7-9 more minutes.
6b) If kneading by hands, knead for about 5 minutes and when the dough starts to become elastic, add in the butter. Continue to knead for about 10 minutes.
7) To determine if you have sufficiently knead your bread dough, do the windowpane test. Take a golf ball sized portion of dough, and slowly stretch the dough using your fingers. It should be able to from a thin, translucent membrane which light can pass through. This means that the gluten has developed sufficiently. If not, continue kneading for 2-3 minutes and then attempting the windowpane test again.
8) Transfer to a lightly floured surface, do a couple of kneads, then form a ball.
9) Place the ball in the greased mixing bowl, covering it with a damp cloth and allow it to double in size. This will take about an hour ( at 29 degrees room temperature ).
10) Poke a hole in the middle of the dough using your finger to release the excess gas.
11) Transfer to a lightly floured surface and divide the dough into 6 or 8 portions, depending on how you like the size of the buns.
12) Form balls of dough by pulling the sides of the dough to its underside, and then pinching ( picture available in notes ).
13) Transfer to a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Cover the dough with a damp cloth and allow it to rise for about 20 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 190 degrees C.
14) Brush a layer of milk over the dough. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
15) Once out, immediately brush another layer of milk over the buns. Cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, and then assemble.
16) Place a spread, and then dip the bun directly in a shallow plate of floss, or scatter the floss onto the top of the buns using your hands.
Coating them with milk further ensures that they remain moist.
They’re best eaten the day they’re made but can be kept up to 3 days at room temperature, covered.
Thickness of TangZhong / Water Roux, the thickness is such that when I lift my whisk, some of the water roux will be carried on top and I can form patterns without it being disintegrated into the main portion:
Pulling the sides of the dough and pinching them to seal on the underside to form balls of dough:
Do contact me if you have any other queries,
– Bakeomaniac, Javier Tan!