Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake // Eat Cho Food

It’s SPRIIIIINNNNNNGGGGGGG TIME! Gosh, the warmth and sunshine is making me so freaking happy. It smells like spring, you know? I can’t explain it, but it just smells warm and fresh. Like all the trees are waking up and mustering up the energy to bloom. Ugh, I love it. We actually spent the weekend in Tahoe, where there is a ton of snow still lol. But it was so sunny! I was burning up during my ski lesson! Did I tell you I can ski now? Me! The girl that trips while walking on perfectly flat sidewalks. That girl can ski! Well, sort of. I can slowly ski down a small hill without falling! I’m pretty much in pizza position the entire time because I’m afraid to go too fast. I’m fine with that though because pizza position makes me think of Reuben’s pizza and I then I get hungry. French fries are great too though…

Wait, what am I talking about again?

Sorry, this beautiful weather turns me into that bubble headed kid that just likes to run around in a meadow picking daisies and spinning around in circles while staring at the sky. I have so much energy and just want to check off the bajillion things on my to-do list as quickly as possible so I have more time to frolic around in the park. It’s funny how the seasons impact the food that we make. In the winter we make hearty stews and braises that warm us up in the kitchen for a few hours. But then in the spring we’re making light and fresh dishes that come together quick, so we have time to go play outside!

This Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake isn’t necessarily spring time specific, because I would literally eat this 365 days a year, but it is so quick and easy to make that you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the glorious sunshine! If you haven’t had a mochi baked good before they are so addictively chewy on the inside and slightly crisp on the outside. Mochiko flour creates the most magical texture. Did you know that mochiko flour is also gluten free?? So it’s practically health food in my opinion.

I got the inspiration for this recipe after my Pinterest was inundated with skillet cookie cakes for some reason. They just kept popping up and I wanted to add my own spin on a cookie cake without adding more noise to the internet. I started to think about the main components of a great chocolate chip cookie. That would be browned butter, brown sugar, quality chocolate, and a ton of flaky sea salt. I love a beautifully caramelized crisp cookie. Then I started to remember that when I was developing my Black Sesame Mochi Muffin recipe I started by making simple browned butter mochi cakes (which includes brown butter and brown sugar as main flavor components) and it reminded me so much of chocolate chip cookies but without the chocolate. I ended up halving that recipe so it would fit in my cast iron skillet, omitting the black sesame (although a black sesame and chocolate cookie cake sounds insanely good!), and heavily sprinkling the batter with chocolate chunks and salt. OMGGGGG I’m not lying when I say that this is one of THE BEST things I’ve ever baked. It so gooey, chewy, crispy, melty, chocolatey, and salty at the same. All the best -y’s! Plus the fact that from start to finish it takes less than 1 hour to make somehow makes it taste even better!

Typically when I’m testing dessert recipes I’ll limit myself to one portion before sending out into the world so I don’t end up eating the entire tray of brownies or cookies myself. No joke, I ate two big slices of this in one second and started to go in for my third before I had to force myself to stop and demand that Reuben take it into work. I still dream of that long lost third slice…

Carve out an hour of your day, make this insane Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake and save me a slice! Or send me a photo of your cake, that works too!

Happy Spring, friends!


Mochi Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Materials:

1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup of full fat canned coconut milk
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups mochiko flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 oz bittersweet chocolate chunks
flaky sea salt

nonstick cooking spray

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 10” cast iron skillet or cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.

2. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook for about 4 minutes until it turns slightly brown. Turn off the heat and immediately whisk in coconut milk, evaporated milk, and brown sugar until evenly mixed and sugar has dissolved. Whisk in eggs and vanilla until smooth. Set aside.

3. Whisk together mochiko flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Slowly pour in butter mixture and whisk until smooth.

4. Fill skillet or cake pan with mochi batter. Sprinkle chocolate chunks over the top of the cake. Place in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until cake is just set.

5. Remove the skillet from the oven, immediately sprinkle with flaky sea salt and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes until cool enough to eat.

enjoy! 

Pull Apart Coconut Buns

Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food
Coconut Buns (Cocktail Buns) // Eat Cho Food

You see that first photo up there? That’s actually a selfie I took this weekend, because I’ve most literally turned into a bun and got a nice tan. Jkkkkk, I just ate a lot of buns the last few days for the sake of “research” and feel very bun-like. I definitely didn’t get a tan because I’ve been mostly indoors since… forever. This weekend has been all sorts of wonderful and all sorts of crazy. My office gave me 2 days to work from home and bake a cake! Like, what?! I’ve been slaving away on this Great British Baking Show Final Showstopper caliber cake that’s inspired by the designs our office created for a recent project. The cake will be part of one of our quarterly publications! I just finished it and I’m actually pretty happy with it! My coworker, Paulina, is an incredible graphic designer and the design of this cake was actually inspired by her work. I made her wedding cake too, which was also inspired by the graphics she created for her invites. So pretty much Paulina and I should start a graphic cake business! Ah, I wish! There was a moment during the decorating process when my buttercream was being weird and kept breaking and I though I was going to melt into one of my crying puddles, but then it somehow worked out! Hooray! If you just push through the butter and tears, things will work out.

(Maybe my tendency to cry all the time is what prevented me from making it on the Great American Baking Show?????? How would the producers know that about me though? Oh, whatever… I’m over it. Stop talking to yourself, there’s still people reading your blog.)

I can’t wait to share the final cake with you! Hopefully that will happen soon.

When I wasn’t working on this crazy cake, Reuben and I got to finally spend some quality time together. It seemed like we barely saw each other for what felt like eons because I was working overtime a bunch and Reuben was gone on his man ski trip. We took advantage of our weekend and got to relax, be lazy, make plans for Italy (we leave in a month!!!!! Holy, meatballs.), eat lots of buns, and squeeze in a little brewery pit stop. There was a cat named Matcha at the brewery we stopped at. I stalked the cat. If you watched my Instagram stories over the weekend you already know it was pretty much the highlight of my whole weekend. Gosh, I loved Matcha. I desperately need a small animal in my life I can name Black Sesame or Noodle.

Should we discuss these buns now? Last week I shared those lovely Chinese Bakery Style Hot Dog Flower Buns and I was overwhelmed by how many people related to them and also considered them a childhood favorite! I would love it if you share with me your Chinese Bakery favorites! I’ll try to make them! This week, I’m sharing another one of my favorites (I have a lot of favorites…)! You might know them as Coconut Buns, Cocktail Buns, or Gai Mei Bao. These buns have a fluffy milk bread base and then filled with a sweet coconut and slightly milky filling. Its made all shiny with a simple syrup glaze, which gives it just a little extra kiss of sweetness. The coconut filling is the best part of the bun! I should eat that stuff straight! Don’t though because there is raw flour in it and it needs to be cooked a bit haha, but you get the point. It’s delicious. The ratio of filling to bun in this recipe is a little higher than what you would find at an actual bakery, but this is my kitchen and I can do what I want! You may notice that the milk bread base is this recipe is different than the Hot Dog Flower Buns, and that is because I’m still experimenting with all the various milk bread techniques. Don’t worry though, they all taste good! Typically you would find Coconut Buns as individual buns, but I wanted to turn them into a shareable/pull apart situation because why the hell not? There is always something about tearing your food apart with your hands that make it taste better. The pull apart nature of this recipe also makes this a great option for your weekend brunch table too! Yay for friends tearing apart buns!


Pull Apart Coconut Buns

makes 11 buns in a 8” round pan

dough materials:

1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup warm milk
1 egg
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup bread flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp instant yeast
1/2 tsp salt

coconut filling materials:

6 tbsp softened butter
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tsp cornstarch
1/4 cup dried milk powder
1/2 cup finely shredded coconut

1 egg + 1 tbsp water - egg wash
sesame seeds - for topping (optional)
1/4 cup water + 1/4 cup white sugar - syrup glaze (optional)

steps:

  1. Combine heavy cream, milk, egg, sugar, cornstarch, flours, yeast, and salt in the bowl of your standmixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix at medium speed (speed setting 4 for KitchenAid) for 15 minutes until a smooth and slightly sticky dough is formed. Stop to scrape down the sides every few minutes. If the dough sticks to the sides, sprinkle a little bit of flour after scraping to help it not stick. Once dough is formed, place in a large bowl lightly greased with oil. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest in a warm place for 90 minutes. The dough will grow 1.5x from its original size.

  2. While is resting, make the coconut filling. Combine all the filling ingredients in a bowl and mix with a spoon or rubber spatula until just combined. Set aside.

  3. Scrape out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 2 minutes. Divide the dough into 11 equal pieces. Roll out the dough into a roughly 3” circle. Add a tablespoon of filling in the center of the dough round. Fold the dough around the filling and pinch the dough together to close. Quickly roll again to form a smooth ball. Place dough in a greased 8” springform pan. Repeat with remaining dough and fill the springform pan. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest for another 45 minutes.

  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the tops of the buns with egg wash (1 egg mixed with 1 tbsp water) and sprinkle each bun with a few sesame seeds if using. Bake for 28-30 minutes on the center rack until golden brown and cooked through.

  5. A few minutes before taking the buns out of the oven, combine 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup sugar in a small sauce pan and cook on medium heat until sugar has dissolved. Remove buns from the oven and immediately brush the syrup glaze over the buns. Allow buns to cool in the springform pan for 10 minutes. Remove buns from the springform pan and cool on a wire rack until ready to eat!

notes :

  1. Buns are best fresh out of the oven. After a few hours or days the bread will feel a little hard. You can just microwave the buns for 15-25 seconds and they will be fluffy again!

  2. If you only have active yeast, you can add it to the warm milk with a pinch of sugar and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes. It should be have a few bubbles on the surface.

Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake

Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // Eat Cho Food
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free
Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/mini-almond-and-satsuma-orange-cake // Gluten Free

Happy Chinese New Year, friends! Gong Hay Fat Choy! We had the most wonderful CNY party this weekend and my body is still recovering from it. If you make almost 100 dumplings in one afternoon, you’ll discover a whole bunch of arm muscles you never knew existed. We had most of our friends over and they all fit! Most importantly, we had enough food and no one left hungry! There was a whole plate of noodles and maybe a few bits of roast pork left. I feel like that’s considered a success! I just love cooking for real life people so much. When I’m making food for the blog, Reuben and I will eat it as a meal if it’s savory and if it’s sweet one of us will bring it to our respective offices to share with our coworkers. I don’t really get to see people’s reactions from eating my food, unless it’s Reuben. There is just something so special when you feed people in your own home and see their eye light up and hear a bunch of loud mmmmmmmmmmmms or OMGGGGGs. It’s so rewarding and makes me so happy! I hope I can mentally and physically recover soon so we can do it all over again! Maybe that will be in 2021 lol.

The very next day I woke up with a slight exhaustion/ happiness hangover ( I was sadly too excited to eat all the food I made and only had maybe 2 drink the entire night), cleaned up the apartment and got it back to a respectable level to have a few more people over for an intimate Super Bowl party. Reuben helped too, don’t worry. I was mentally dreading having more people over after the party, but they brought a puppy over and I made mac and cheese… so it was all good! I not sure what we’re going to do tonight for actual Chinese New Year? I honestly still feel wiped out after this weekend, so maybe we will order in chinese food? That still counts!

In honor of Chinese New Year, I’m sharing this Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake! During CNY a lot of the food we eat are meant to symbol something good for the new year! Noodles for long life and dumplings for fortune and wealth. I had satsuma oranges all over our food table at the party as decoration, but also because you’re supposed to have oranges as a symbol of good luck! I’ve shared a few savory recipes this month for CNY but every celebration needs a dessert! Cake! We always need cake! This cake is deliciously moist and dense from the almond flour. Bonus points too because it’s also gluten free. The orange flavor is super bright and present in both the cake and buttercream. I love how Mother Nature was kind enough to give us great citrus during the cold and gloomy months of winter. It’s like she knows we all need a little fruity and zesty pick me up to get through the polar vortex (it doesn’t snow here, but I sympathize with you if you’re freezing).

I hope you have the chance to whip up this cute little citrus cake! I also hope you all have a wonderful and fulfilling new year : ) eat some dumplings for me!


Mini Almond and Satsuma Orange Cake

makes a 2 layer 6” cake

cake materials:

4 eggs - yolks and whites separated
zest of 1 satsuma orange
1/2 cup sugar - divided
1 1/2 cup almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp almond extract

orange buttercream materials:

3/4 cup unsalted butter - softened
3 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
juice of 1 small satsuma orange

*double the buttercream ingredients if you wish to full coat the cake.

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line the bottom of 2 6” cake pans with parchment paper rounds.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks with orange zest and 1/4 cup sugar. In another bowl, whisk together almond flour, salt, and baking powder. Add to egg mixture and whisk to combine.

  3. In the bowl of your standmixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk egg whites on low for about 30 second and then increase to medium speed. While the whisk is still running, slowly add in the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar and whisk until soft peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the egg and almond flour mixture until just combined.

  4. Pour batter in cake pans and bake for 23-25 minutes until done. Allow cake to cool in the pans for 10 minutes and then invert the cakes onto a wire rack to completely cool.

  5. In the bowl of your stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, blend together softened butter, powdered sugar, salt, and orange juice until smooth. It might look curdled for a minute but just keep blending. Place a cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Add a plop of buttercream on top and smooth with an offset spatula. Add second layer and frost the top of the cake and the sides with a light layer of buttercream for a naked appearance. Decorate with additional buttercream or marzipan dyed to look like oranges. Cut and serve!

Black Sesame Waffles

Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles
Easy and Simple Black Sesame Waffle // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/12/black-sesame-waffles

January is a month of fresh starts, juice cleanses, Whole30, Cook90, Marie Kondo purges, and strong gym attendance… for some people. I’m cooking the same tasty and satisfying food I love, which is definitely not compliant by any diet’s standards. I’m refusing to watch the Marie Kondo special, for no particular reason. And I’ve been to the gym a handful times, which I’m actually pretty proud of! I tried to not set too many resolutions for myself this year and just focus on being a happy and productive human bean. That’s a pretty good goal I think!

I do have a few normal and boring general life goals though. This year I think will finally be the year that I become really, LIKE REALLY, organized. I can feel it! Or maybe this is the year I learn to actually make the bed every morning. That would be something. I’m trying, Mom! I’m also trying to make a conscious effort to waste less. That means:

  1. Eating all my vegetables and salad greens before they get gross.

  2. Buying less plastic things. You should have seen how much paper and plastic I purged from our office. OMG. I’m so sorry, Earth!

  3. And using up all the boxes of lasagna noodles we have in the cupboard from when Reuben and I couldn’t decide on the perfect noodles to make the best lasagna.

When you’re a food blogger or even just like a well stocked home cook, you end up with a ton of food products taking up space in your fridge or cupboards. I have SO MANY random bags of various flours and starches. When is the next time I’m going to bake with oat bran???? How many jars of coconut butter is normal? 5? I looked in the fridge a week ago and realized that I had like 4 half full jars of tahini! So I’m trying to work through all the excess things in my kitchen little by little so that I can hopefully reset my kitchen pantry with the necessities. That would be butter, flour, sugar, salt, and oyster sauce.

This recipe for Black Sesame Waffles used up the last bit of black sesame tahini hiding in the far end of my fridge. You know that back corner right by the open box of Arm & Hammer that’s been there since you moved in? That’s where the jar was hiding. I’m honestly surprised that I didn’t use up this jar sooner because I LOVE black sesame everything. Muffins. Cake. Cookies. Sprinkled on 90% of my meals. I’m obsessed. I might even get a black sesame tattoo! JK I won’t ever do that. But a black sesame tattoo would just be like an extra freckle, right?

These waffles are deeply nutty from the black sesame. Almost like peanut butter but 1000000% better. The texture is light but with a nice chew, which I’m all about. You can find black sesame paste or tahini at your local asian or Mediterranean market, Whole Foods might have it, or you can just order it off the internet! You could make it from scratch too! Regular tahini also works if you’re having a hard time finding the black sesame variety. Once you’ve introduced black sesame into your kitchen, these waffles are super easy to whip up in the morning, because I know you don’t want to be separating eggs and whip egg whites to stiff peaks on the verge of a hangry meltdown. You just want to eat! I love topping my waffles with yogurt, but dreamy whipped cream and pomegranates make for a slightly fancy and luxurious breakfast situation. You deserve it. It’s January and you’re already kicking booty!


Black Sesame Waffles

serves 4-6

materials:

2 cups AP flour
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cup greek yogurt
1/2 cup water
2 eggs
4 tbsp melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup black sesame paste/tahini

steps:

  1. Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a large bowl.

  2. Add greek yogurt and water in a medium bowl. Whisk until combined. Add in eggs, butter, vanilla, and black sesame paste. Whisk again until combined. If your black sesame paste is a little thicker you may need to mix a little longer, but a few small chunks of sesame paste is okay!

  3. Add wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Avoid over mixing. The batter will be really thick.

  4. Heat up your waffle iron. Fill iron accordingly, so that it does not overflow. I place about 2/3 cup of batter in my waffle iron to make these. Cook until desired doneness (3-4 level for me).

  5. Serve warm with whipped cream, maple syrup, and pomegranates! Or with whatever your heart desires!

Matcha (sorta) Pineapple Buns

Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha (sorta) Pineapple Buns
Matcha (sorta) Pineapple Buns
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun
Matcha Pineapple Buns // https://eatchofood.com/blog/2019/1/1/matcha-pineapple-bun

Hello, 2019! Happy New Year!! I hope you went to bed as early as you wanted and didn’t have to stand outside in the cold or rain waiting for fireworks or a ball to drop. We celebrated the New Year twice technically, because we were flying from Cleveland to San Francisco when the clock struck midnight (EST). So I blew Reuben a kiss from my crammed middle seat because he fell victim to the cold floating around my family and I’m trying my hardest to not succumb to the germs too. We unwillingly celebrated the New Year again in our apartment, hangry (thank god for delivery sushi though!) and definitely grumpy from flying. But we were so thankful to be back home and in our cozy bed again! This isn’t too far from my ideal NYE though, if you take out the hangry-ness. My ideal NYE is at home, watching a movie with my family instead of a celebrity filled countdown. Maybe I’ll take a glass of sparkling cider and some cheese and crackers.

Reuben and I got to spend a nice long holiday week in Cleveland and it was so dang pleasant. We gained about 143929491 pounds but it was worth it. Staying at my parents’ house is sort of magical. I sleep so much, there is always a new movie to watch, and somehow there is always freshly made egg rolls. Thanks, Mom! Christmas is the one holiday out of the year that I always go home and try to stay for as long as possible. Throughout the rest of the year, I get a few longish or super short weekends to get some time to see my brother and parents. Maybe a few aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandma sightings too! So getting a whole week at home with the fam is the best Christmas present. Sorry, was that too corny?

The last few times I’ve been home, I’ve gotten into the habit of making Pineapple Buns or Bo Lo Bao. They are a huge family favorite at Chinese bakeries! We all love them. Especially my dad and grandma. Pineapple Buns don’t actually have any pineapple in them. They get their name from the crisscross pattern formed on the topping, which resembles a pineapple. The bun is a super fluffy and slightly sweet milk bread topped with a crisp cookie like topping. I would experiment on the recipe every single time I was home because no matter how they turned out my family would eat them instantly. Plus I Ioved having a family full of taste testers available!

The goals of my experimentation were:

1. Super fluffy and light milk bread.

2. A cookie topping that would actually hold a definite pattern.

Achieving goal number 2 was a lot harder than I thought. The topping on a classic pineapple bun sort of naturally cracks and becomes a super flakey cookie. It doesn’t quite hold the score patterns as cleanly as I want them to. But! When Reuben and I went to Mexico City this past summer, I discovered the Concha! I tried a few different ones for research purposes (obviously) and realized that they were remarkably similar to pineapple buns. I found the bread to be a little drier and not as rich and doughy, but the cookie topping was similar in flavor and texture. The patterns on all the conchas were so clean and defined! The recipes for concha topping and pineapple bun topping is pretty similar. The only difference I found was the use of powdered sugar instead of caster sugar, which allows the topping to retain it’s form a lot better. So I inserted the (sorta) into the recipe name because these buns are like if a Pineapple Bun and a Concha had a beautiful and delicious hybrid baby bun!

The end result after a year of experimenting is the lightest and tastiest milk bread with an addicting cookie topping! If you haven’t had a warm pineapple bun just out of the oven with some butter and honey, then you are missing out on one of the best things in life EVER! Oooh I bet a drizzle of condensed milk would be amazing too! Don’t forget to make yourself a cup of milk tea while you’re at it!


Matcha (sorta) Pineapple Buns

makes 16 buns

milk bread materials:

2/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
1 egg
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups bread flour
1 package of instant yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
1 tsp salt

topping materials:

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup dry milk powder
1 tsp matcha powder
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
2 tbsp milk

steps:

  1. Combine heavy cream, milk, egg, sugar, cornstarch, flours, yeast, and salt in the bowl of your standmixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix at medium speed (speed setting 4 for KitchenAid) for 15 minutes until a smooth and slightly sticky dough is formed. Stop to scrape down the sides every few minutes. Once dough is form, place in a large bowl lightly greased with oil. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest in a warm place for 90 minutes. The dough will grow 1.5x from its original size.

  2. Scrape out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 2 minutes. Divide the dough into 16 equal pieces and roll into smooth little dough balls. Place dough balls on baking trays lined with parchment paper. 8 dough balls fit on a standard baking tray. Cover trays with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest for another 45 minutes.

  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  4. Make topping by combining flour, dry milk powder, matcha powder, shortening, powdered sugar, baking powder, salt, egg yolk, and milk in the bowl of a standmixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on low speed for 1 minute. Dough will still be slightly crumbly. Knead together with you hands until dough is smooth and combined. Set aside until ready to use.

  5. Once the dough has rested for the second time, roll out the topping on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/8” thick. Cut out 16 2.5” - 3” circles using a cutter. Use an offset spatula or bench scraper to lift the dough rounds up if they stick. Place rounds on top of the dough balls and lightly score the tops.

  6. Bake buns for 15-17 minutes until buns are slightly golden. Remove from oven and allow buns to cool on a wire rack. Enjoy warm or completely cooled.

baking notes:

  1. In the photos you’ll notice that I marbled a plain dough with matcha dough. I did this in an attempt to make the buns look more pineapple like. The marbling is unnecessary because the colors are not as defined after baking. So just mix in the matcha into the entire dough.

  2. These buns are relatively small-medium sized. If you prefer larger buns just divide the dough into 12 instead.