Italians are great foodies. Maritozzi Con la Panna, soft cream buns, are a favourite with them and deservedly so. They are delicious.
I do love a soft, slightly sweetened bun, made with an enriched dough. In the past I have made iced buns and have a recipe on the blog for them. Today I decided to make some bun, based on an Italian one known as Maritozzi. With the inclusion of whipped cream, sweetened to taste, they are known as Maritozzi con la Panna. Although I cannot claim this recipe is authentic to the Italian buns I do think it is fairly close, based on all the videos and recipes I have seen.
The recipe takes some time to make, but is very simple, particularly if using a stand mixer for the dough. The dough does have to rest for a couple of hours, to proof before being shaped. Then a further allow is allowed for a second proof. Then is is only 20 minutes of baking before leaving them to cool before filling with cream.
Often these buns, in Italy, have some sultanas included in them too but I wanted just a simple bun for mine.
The buns were made with very strong bread flour, which had a protein content of 14%. But they will work well with strong white bread flour too. The Italian buns often use just a seed oil in the dough, but that can be substituted with melted and cooled butter if desired.
I was certainly very pleased with how they turned out. They were lovely and soft, with the hint of orange flavour and the light whipped cream which was slightly sweetened was perfect.
A slightly simpler version of these might be Devonshire Splits which doesn’t include eggs in the dough. At some time in the future I shall try those too.
Another great Italian speciality is Torta Caprese.
- 500g(3 1/3 cups, based on scooping packed flour into a 250ml cup) very strong white bread flour
- 250ml(1 cup + 2 tsp) lukewarm milk
- 70g(6 tbsp minus 1 tsp) caster sugar
- 70g(5 tbsp) vegetable oil
- 1 medium egg(large in USA)
- 5g(1 2/3 tsp)instant yeast
- zest from one orange
- pinch of salt
- 100g (3 1/2 oz) of sultanas(soaked and drained) – This is an optional ingredient
- 1 tbsp sugar, for a syrup
- 1 tbsp water for a syrup
- 400ml(1 2/3 cups) double cream
- Icing sugar, to taste in the cream(I used 30g, a 1/4 cup)
- 1 egg yolk and a little milk for a wash
- In the bowl of a stand mixer place the flour and the yeast, and give it a mix around.
- Add the milk, egg, sugar and oil.
- Mix with the dough hook attachment until the dough comes together into a stretchy quite smooth dough, which will take about 5 minutes(10 minutes if doing it by hand).
- As the dough comes together add the zest and the salt to ensure that gets combined too.
- If using sultanas add them and mix again until they are evenly distributed.
- Tip the dough out onto the counter and form it into a ball, tightening it by turning, until the surface is taut.
- Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
- Place into a warm place and leave to proof for 2 hours, until the dough has more than doubled in size.
- Knock the air out of the dough and tip out onto the work surface, then divide into 9 equally sized pieces.
- Form each piece of dough into a tight ball, pinching any seams together.
- Roll slightly to form an oval.
- Place on a parchment lined baking tray.
- Cover the shaped dough with some lightly oiled plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for an hour.
- As the hour comes to an end preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
- Beat the egg yolk and milk together.
- Brush all over the surface of each shaped piece of dough.
- Place the baking tray(s) in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes(mine took 20 minutes), turning once during baking, if using a static heat rather than the fan. The buns should turn a darkish brown colour.
- As the buns bake heat the water and sugar until the sugar as dissolved, then set aside in a small bowl.
- Remove the baked buns from the oven and place them on a wire rack.
- While the buns are still hot brush them all over with the syrup and then leave them to cool completely.
- Place the cream and icing sugar into a large bowl and whip until the cream has achieved fairly stiff peaks.
- Cut each bun on a diagonal slant, but don’t cut all the way through, they just need be opened up to take the cream.
- Spoon, or pipe, cream into the mouth of the buns and use a small offset spatula or a knife to level the cream with the surface of the buns.
- Remove any excess cream from the surface of the buns.
- Lightly dust the buns with icing sugar and they are ready to serve.