Coconut Buns | Pani Popo Eggless Recipe

I am very late for my final post with the Tea Kadai theme. Even when I was deciding on the sets of dishes one might find in a typical tea kadai in south, or at least what I am exposed to, they do sell a sort of coconut buns. I have never tasted them, the ones that I have tasted are from Adyar Bakery, and it's more sort of buns stuffed with coconut sugary cream. Those buns tastes awesome and even after so many years, the taste still lingers on in memory.

So I decided I must have this on menu. Of course the other bread was the Bread Butter Jam. This came from the shop that used to be on our way to school. Yes I remember eating it couple of times. However much solid and costly Jam you have, it can't match the taste that was mixed with the butter in your bread. Bread was more a bun I think, the jam quite runny and the butter most probably home made, if I remember right. Oh my God, it used to taste heavenly!

I almost thought I must make Bread Butter Jam, all from scratch of course. However I didn't have time, and as such I am very last. Meanwhile I was searching for the coconut buns and wasn't able to arrive at one recipe. When Pavani posted Coconut Buns and with her heavenly pictures, I knew my job was done easy for me. I must thank her for the spoon feed. If only she was able to parcel her buns, I would've been much more happier. My buns are in no means meet the awesomeness you find in her pictures. Taste wise they were delicious, though I almost baked for nearly 30 mins. Still the buns looked they might have been baked for some more, while the outer crust was crisp. I will be trying it again. 

Pani popo are Samoan coconut buns where soft, tender buns are bathed and baked in sweet coconut syrup. Pavani used coconut powder, since I didn't have I went ahead used Coconut Milk. I was glad when I checked the original recipe and saw that it can also be used. She adapted it from King Arthur collection. I was also happy that I had the egg replacer that Vaishali gave me. I must now search where I will get an egg replacer in my place.






Coconut Buns | Eggless Pani Popo

Ingredients Needed:

For the Buns:

All purpose flour / Maida - 3 1/2 cups
Sugar - 1/4 cup
Milk powder - 1/4 cup
Active Dry Yeast - 2 1/4 tsp
Lukewarm water - 3/4 cup
Egg Replacer - 2 tbsp whisked in 6 tbsp water (instead of 2 large eggs)
Unsalted Butter - 2 tbsp, softened
Salt - 1 1/4 tsp
Vanilla extract - 1 tsp

For the Coconut Syrup:

Thick Coconut Milk / Coconut Powder - 1 cup (use 1 cup Water if using coconut powder)
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Corn Flour - 1 1/2 tsp
Salt - a pinch

How to make Coconut Buns

Make the Dough for Buns: 

Combine all the ingredients for the bun in a large bowl. Mix and knead until everything comes together into a smooth dough, about 5-7 minutes. Dough should be soft and pliable.

Place the dough in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Grease a 9"x13" cake pan. Set aside.

After the first rise, gently punch the dough and divide into 12 equal pieces.

Shape each piece into a rough ball by pulling the dough into a very small knot at the bottom. Roll into a smooth ball and evenly place them in the greased pan.

Cover loosely with a lid and let rise for 45-60 minutes.

About halfway through the rising, preheat the oven to 350°F / 170 C

Make the Coconut Sauce: 

Last 20 minutes of rising, make the sauce. Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk well to combine and cook for 5-7 minutes until sauce thickens.

Make Pani Popo:

After the buns have risen, pour the sauce evenly over them and bake for 18-25 minutes until the tops are golden brown. I baked mine for nearly 30 minutes, while pavani said hers took only 22 mins.

Cool in the pan and serve them warm from right out of the pan. If you want to save them for later, then invert them onto a cooling rack, store in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days.

Notes:

Mine didn't turn brown or golden on top, so brushed with milk and butter. Still they didn't turn as I saw in Pavani's or the Original recipe.

The buns are soft and dense, they turned fluffy after cooling down. However all the buns were almost done by the time this happened.

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