Kaya and Coconut Sticky Buns

1/31/2020 11:09:00 AM

Kaya and coconut sticky buns. The softest, fluffiest bread dough, twirled around lashings of sweet sweet kaya and shredded coconut. A gorgeous Malaysian-style sweet treat!

Kaya and coconut sticky buns
Kaya and coconut sticky buns

I've made the kaya, I love the kaya, I'm obsessed with the kaya. No secret there. When I made the most recent batch of kaya, I wanted to do something a little more than just slathering it on hot buttered toast, and set to work trying to think of a baked good that would showcase the kaya. I'm please to say that these kaya and coconut sticky buns were the result!

I got the idea from a couple of places - the pandan and coconut danishes at Lisette's in Kuala Lumpur, and the scrolls with roasted pineapple, salted kaya curd and lime glaze that were a twice-off special at my beloved Beatrix Bakes - although my buns ended up being quite a lot simpler than either of those fancy treats.

I made a yeasted dough using the tangzhong method - essential for the super soft and fluffy white bread that you get as Asian bakeries. (You you may remember the tangzhong method from my raisin yuzu milk buns, or, you know, all over the internet). It's just one extra step and it's pretty easy - just whisk together flour, water and milk over a medium heat until thickened. Let it cool, then add it to the rest of the dough ingredients and knead as per usual! And the results are fabulous. Even the raw dough is gorgeous - I love how soft and pillowy it is.

Tangzhong dough
Tangzhong dough

I then rolled it out, brushed it generously with melted salted butter, slathered on the kaya, sprinkled it with shredded coconut, and rolled it up into a log. (I used my homemade kaya, but storebought is more than fine). I sliced the log into twelve even pieces (using a piece of kitchen twine for ease; the dough is far too soft to be sliced neatly with a knife), and arranged them in a lined tray before their second proving.

Kaya and coconut sticky buns
Kaya and coconut sticky buns, ready for the oven

A short stint in a moderate oven, and they were done! I brushed the baked buns with extra melted butter, because I had some left, and I always love butter!

Kaya and coconut sticky buns
Kaya and coconut sticky buns

I totally loved these buns - the dough is so soft and fluffy, and the coconut and kaya is just a match made in heaven! I love the chewy texture provided by the shredded coconut, and the little roasty coconut shreds on the tops of the buns were just the best.

Kaya and coconut sticky buns
Kaya and Coconut Sticky Buns

We served them as part of a larger brunch spread, with German-style Nußschnecken (hazelnut scrolls), gula melaka granola and fruit, but these little kaya buns certainly can stand on their own!

Kaya and coconut sticky buns, Nusßschnecken; Coyo and gula melaka granola

Enjoy! Don't forget to check out my kaya recipe too!

Kaya and Coconut Sticky Buns
A recipe by Sarah Cooks, dough based on King Arthur's Soft Cinnamon Rolls

For the Tangzhong
35 grams water
35 grams full-fat milk
14 grams bread flour
For the dough
250 grams bread flour
10 grams milk powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon yeast powder
85 grams full-fat milk, lukewarm
1 large egg
42 grams unsalted butter, melted
For the filling
2 tablespoons salted butter, melted, plus extra for finishing
1/2 cup kaya
3/4 cup moist sweetened shredded coconut

To make the Tangzhong, whisk the water, milk and flour in a small saucepan until completely smooth. Cook over a medium heat for a few minutes or until thickened and the whisk leaves line on the bottom of the pan. Scrape the mixture into a separate bowl and set aside to cool slightly.
To make the dough, place all the ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Add the tangzhong mixture. Mix to combine all the ingredients. Cover the dough and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
Uncover the dough and knead for approximately 10 minutes, or until smooth and elastic and the bread passes the windowpane test.
Form into a ball, leave it in the bowl, cover with clingfilm and allow to rise at room temperature for 1 hour - 90 minutes, or until puffy and approximately doubled in size.
To assemble, punch the dough down, and roll out into a 20cm x 45cm rectangle.
Brush the dough evenly with melted salted butter. Spread the kaya over the dough. Sprinkle generously with the shredded coconut.
Starting from the long edge, roll into a log. Use kitchen twine to cut the log into 12 even pieces. Loop the twine around the log and slowly but firmly pull it around the spot you want to slice.
Line a 23cm x 33cm rectangular baking tray with baking paper. Arrange the 12 spirals into the tray. Cover the tray with foil and refrigerate overnight.
When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 175C. Take the rolls out of the fridge and allow to come to room temperature while the oven is preheating.
Cook the rolls for 22-25 minutes, or until lightly golden brown and cooked through. (If you measure the temperature of the bread in the centre, it should be around 88C).
Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Brush with extra melted salted butter before serving.
Makes 12

Have you made this recipe? Leave a comment below! Tag me on Instagram @sarahcooksblog and hashtag #sarahcooksblog

For more bready scrolly goodness:

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  1. Tangzhong bread is perfect for Kaya! Mmm I'd like one of these right now :D



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