The eagle eyed amongst you will spot that this one is only a minor modification of my standard, everyday bread recipe. This may very well be the case, but do not assume that there is anything standard or everyday about the result, as that would be a mistake. These buns are SERIOUSLY naughty, super sweet and hyper indulgent, with a sticky lardy crust and a rich, melted chocolate middle. They are the near definition of a guilty pleasure and not for the faint of heart. However, if you ever feel the need for a shamelessly sinful treat (and we ALL feel that need once in a while) then these are just the toothsome ticket!
Prep time: 20 Mins (Plus some proving time)
Baking time: 20-25 Mins
110g Tepid Water
6g Fresh Yeast
A pinch sugar
150g Very Strong White Bread Flour
A Pinch of salt
6 heaped tbsp Nutella (or thick Chocolate Fudge Sauce)
10g Unsalted Butter
25g Caster sugar
This recipe will make about 3 large buns. Pour the water into a large bowl, add the yeast and sugar, then mix to blend. Add the flour and salt, loosely mix, then
tip out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for around 8 minutes, stretching the dough apart, folding back on itself, turning by a quarter and repeating. When the dough is smooth and elastic return to a clean floured bowl and leave covered in a warm place to prove for around 60-70 minutes.
Tip the proven dough out onto a floured surface, divide into three and roll
each out into a flat disk, around the thickness of a pound coin. Place
2 heaped tbsp of Nutella in the middle, bring the sides up to form a ball,
press to seal completely, invert and place on a greased baking tray. Cover with an upturned bowl or plastic tub and leave again for 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 8. Uncover the buns and pierce a hole in the top of each with a sharp skewer. Melt the lard and butter together and lightly coat the surface of each ball. I use my fingers for this, as I find a brush can sometimes damage the dough. Sprinkle liberally with caster sugar,
then bake in the centre of the oven. After 10-12 minutes, brush
again with the remaining melted lard/butter, sprinkle with more sugar and return to
oven for another 10 minutes or so, until a deep golden brown. These are best served warm with cold cream on the side, but I would advise against tucking in straight from the oven, as the melted chocolate middle will be nothing short of molten!