Chinese "pineapple" buns are the way Asians use a streudel to top their pastries. This one is filled with custard for a sweet surprise.
Cuisine: Asian, Chinese
Keyword: Asian, Breakfast
Author: Eva Bakes
2 and 1/4cupsall-purpose flour
1 and 1/2teaspoonsactive dry yeast
6TBSPunsalted butterroom temperature
Yellow food coloringoptional
1 and 1/4cupsall-purpose flour
Another egg for egg wash
1 and 7/8ounceswheat starchtungmin flour*
1/2cupsweetened condensed milk
1large eggslightly beaten
*You can substitute with 1 TBSP of vanilla pudding mix - NOT instant and 1/4 cup corn starch
Place the dough ingredients in a bread machine according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. Set to the dough cycle and start the machine. It takes about two hours for the dough cycle to complete. (I do not own a bread machine and simply kneaded the dough by hand, covered it with plastic wrap and heated it in the microwave for 20 seconds. I then let the dough rest for about 10-15 minutes and reheated it for another 20 seconds in the microwave. I let the dough rest for another 2 hours before it rose.)
While the dough is resting, make the topping. In a large bowl, mix the butter and powdered sugar together. Add in the salt, milk powder, vanilla, and food coloring and mix well. Then add the beaten egg and mix. Finally, mix in the flour and combine. If the dough is too sticky, place it in the refrigerator to firm up.
Prepare the filling. Combine the custard powder (or vanilla pudding mix) and wheat starch (or corn starch) in a non-stock saucepan. Add in sweetened condensed milk, and mix over low heat until combined. Add butter. Bring the mixture to a simmer while constantly stirring. The mixture should turn into a consistency like paste. Remove the mixture from stove and allow to cool slightly. Once the mixture has cooled, add the egg and stir constantly until it has been well incorporated. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions, shape them into balls, cover with a damp towel and set aside.
After the dough has risen, punch it down and separate into 12 equal pieces. If dough is too sticky, add a little bit more flour. Using a lightly floured rolling pin on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough ball into a circle. Thin out the edges more than the center. Add a custard ball in the middle, and wrap to form a bun. Pinch centers to seal and place on parchment paper lined baking pan, seam side up. Repeat for the other buns.
Remove topping from refrigerator and divide into 12 pieces. Flatten topping dough with hands and gently place on top of bun. Using a knife, score the topping 3 times vertically then 3 times horizontally. Repeat for other buns and let dough rise for 40-50 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
After final rising, gently re-center topping if needed. Gently brush egg wash over each bun.
Bake for 10 minutes at 325 degrees. Then, reduce temperature to 300 degrees and bake an additional 5 minutes. Allow buns to fully cool before storing in air-tight containers. These buns freeze exceptionally well (for several months). Simply reheat them in the microwave for 30-45 seconds to serve.