Another twist to humble bread, the caterpillar buns. Kids are really attracted by these. You can choose a filling of your choice. I have used paneer filling. You can also spread Nutella or even butter and cinnamon with brown sugar. The choice is unlimited.
Two most important things in bread making are: Milk should be just warm, approx. 48 to 54 degrees Celsius .
Second is kneading. You have to knead it for 10. -12 minutes for the gluten to develop, which helps the buns or any bread for that matter to rise.
Read the entire recipe carefully , including notes before you start.
This recipe was shared by a friend, Hazeena.
I have tweaked the original recipe slightly to suit my taste. The original recipe is from here
Ingredients Paneer stuffing
Paneer grated 400 gm.
Bell peppers ( red and yellow) 1 cup
Extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp.
Onion ( finely chopped ) 1 cup.
Garlic ( crushed ) 2 tsp.
Green chilly ( finely chopped) 1.
Ginger ( grated ) 2 tsp.
Chettinad spice mix 2 tbsp.
salt ( or to taste) 2 tsp.
Coriander ( chopped) 2 tbsp.
Ingredients For buns:
All Purpose Flour ( maida) 4 cups
Milk (warm) 1 1/2 cup
Instant Yeast 2 tsp
Baking Powder 2 pinch.
Sugar 1 tsp.
Salt 1 tsp.
Oil ( EVOO or any vegetable oil) 6 tbsp.
Milk Powder 3 tbsp.
Garlic ( crushed) 1 tbsp
for brushing Extra oil and milk
Method for Paneer Stuffing:
- Heat oil in a non stick pan .
- Add garlic and green chilli .
- Stir and add onions and ginger
- Sauté onions till soft and pink
- Tip in bell peppers , sauté for a couple for minutes .
- Add paneer , salt and Chettinad spice mix .
- Sauté on medium until the mixture is completely dry
- Remove from fire and mix in chopped coriander .
- Keep the filling aside to cool .
- Divide it into 4 equal parts.
Method for Caterpillar Buns:
- Warm milk. It should be just warm to touch not hot.
- Place flour in a large bowl.
- Make a well in the centre.
- Sprinkle salt and baking powder on the sides of flour , away from the well.
- Sprinkle sugar in the well.
- Over the sugar sprinkle yeast.
- Pour milk into the well.
- Slowly blend in the flour, till all the flour is incorporated.
- Tip it on a well floured counter top.
- Start kneading the dough.
- Add a little flour if the dough is sticky.
- You will get a beautiful dough that is soft and not sticky at all.
- Don't be tempted to add too much flour.
- There will be a slight variation in the total amount of flour used because of the quality of the flour and weather conditions.
- Now knead till the dough is elastic and soft like baby's bottom.
- If kneading by hand then knead for 10-12 minutes.
- Now grease a large bowl and put the ready dough into the bowl and turn the dough over so as to grease it from all sides.
- Cover with a cling film and let it sit undisturbed in a warm and draft free place till it doubles in size, anywhere between an hour to hour and a half depending on the temperature of your kitchen .
- To check if the dough has risen enough, push your finger , into the dough upto your second knuckle. If the indention remains when you remove your finger then it is ready else let it rise for some more time.
- Once the dough has doubled, turn it onto a floured surface and punch it .
- Add garlic .
- Knead for a couple of minutes to release all the trapped air and incorporate garlic properly.
- Divide the dough into 4 equal parts
- On a floured surface roll it out one portion into a 11" long and 10" wide rectangle.
- As shown in the pic below spread paneer filling on 2/3 of the rectangle.
- Cut the remaining 1/3 into 1/4" strips as shown in the pic below.
- Slowly lift the edges from the farthest end from you and start rolling it.
- Seal the ends and very gently lift it and place it on a prepared baking tray, slightly curved in the centre . Refer to the pic above.
- On one end stick two cloves for eyes.
- Repeat with remaining portions.
- Brush with oil. Cover and leave them for second prove, till they double in size.
- Anywhere between 30 to 45 minutes.
- Brush them with milk and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 25 -35minutes till golden. Mine were ready in 30 minutes.
- Once done remove on a wire rack.
- Brush with melted butter or extra virgin olive oil for softer crust.
- For the filling, you can also use spices of your choice instead of chettinad spice.
- if you are using active dry yeast then in warm milk mix sugar. Now sprinkle yeast and mix it lightly.
- Keep it in a warm place for 10 minutes. You will see yeast would have ballooned by now.
- Pour the oil into the well. Now pour yeast water mixture in the well and proceed.
- In this case you don't sprinkle sugar in the well.
- To prepare the baking tray : grease it and then over with a baking paper. Grease and dust the paper also.
- Alternatively place a silicon mat on the baking tray. This is what I prefer.