My Garlic and Mozzarella Swirl Buns are the perfect picnic or bake-sale version of my ever popular Garlic Tear’n’Share Loaf. The enriched bread is gorgeously soft, the cheese stringy and the garlic bordering on spicy. You’re going to need to make a double batch!
Firstly, lets please all take a moment to check out the new board I received for my birthday – all personalised and everything! (Yes I know it says “Portia’s Pantry” and not “Cedges” but there is a long and convoluted story and it remains ‘personalised’ to me!
My Super Garlicky Cheesy Tear’n’Share Loaf was a surprise hit of a recipe for me. Its no real wonder though because its bloody gorgeous! I first made it for a Band of Bakers event where is went down a storm (gone in less than 7 minutes!) and I’ve made various versions of it ever since. This swirl bun version is a riff on a chelsea bun but without any of that blasted cinnamon I hate so much!
These Garlic and Mozzarella Swirl Buns are the ideal version for a buffet, picnic or as I designed them for, a bake sale! My buns went down a storm on the East Dulwich WI stall at the Goose Green Fair. I also made a mini version, topped them with yellow cheese and breadcrumbs and presented them as “Dino Rocks” for a kid’s 5th (dinosaur themed) birthday party – I’m rather proud of the presentation of that one to be honest!
Don’t be tempted to use fresh Mozzarella cheese here, it’ll be far too wet as would cream cheese or any other soft cheese like brie. The pre grated stuff has all the joy and stringyness of mozzarella but it’s quite dry – also best for pizza toppings I think. You could however use something stronger like cheddar or gouda but you’ll lose some of the gooey joy. A mixture would probably work.
Ingredients – For the Dough:
90ml (6 tbsp) Water
2 x 7g sachets Fast-Acting Dried Yeast
500g Strong White Flour – I sometimes substitute White Spelt Flour
50g Caster Sugar
1 tbsp Sea Salt Flakes
40g Salted Butter or Low Fat Spread
140ml Skimmed or Semi-Skimmed Milk
Ingredients – For the Filling and Topping:
250g Salted Butter
3 tbsp Garlic Paste
1 tbsp Sea Salt Flakes
2 tbsp Fresh (Or Dried) Oregano
150g Pre Grated Mozzarella Cheese
- I used my basic model Kenwood Stand Mixer* to mix and knead the dough with the dough hook attachment. Some electrical hand whisks* also come with dough hooks which I used to use in my pre Kenwood days. This is such a soft dough you could easily knead the dough by hand, it will jus take a little longer and be a little bit messier.
- Knead the dough on a floured surface but try not to add too much extra flour to the dough as this will dry it out. If it feels like its getting a bit dry, knead in a little more milk or water. You can alternatively use oil to grease the surface but be careful not to knead too much oil into the bread.
- You can just leave the dough to prove on the side in the kitchen but it’ll take twice as long. An airing cupboard or similar is ideal but I don’t have one so depending on the time of year, I usually put one of my ovens onto a super low heat and pop it in there – I’ve been burnt by doing this on occasion by being impatient and its started to cook the dough a little by having it on too high a heat. Don’t do this! You could also warm the oven a little, pop the dough in and then turn the oven off – just don’t keep opening the door to let the residual heat out.
- If you use the microwave to soften the butter, I usually do, I’m not organised enough to take it out the fridge in advance, cut it into small squares first and spread them out on a plate. Blitz for no more than 5 seconds at a time. This way its more evenly softened rather than big block which will melt on the outside and stay solid in the middle.
Add 6 tbsp of fairly warm (not hot) Water to a small bowl and add 2 x 7g sachets Fast-Acting Dried Yeast and 50g Caster Sugar. Whisk to combine a little (it won’t combine properly) and set aside.
Measure 500g Strong White Flour and 1 tbsp Sea Salt Flakes into a large mixing bowl and stir to combine.
Add 40g Salted Butter or Low Fat Spread, 2 Eggs, the by now frothy yeast and water mix and 140ml Skimmed or Semi-Skimmed Milk to the flour and stir until a dough is formed. The dough will be quite soft and sticky – this is a good thing!
Knead the dough until is it smooth and super stretchy – a good 10 minutes if kneading by hand, if not a bit longer – 5 to 7 minutes if using an electric mixer.
Leave the dough in a large covered bowl somewhere warm for about an hour to rise – it should about double in size.
While the dough is rising, make the garlic butter and cheese mix.
Take 250g Salted Butter which is room temperature or a little softer and mix in 3 tbsp Garlic Paste, 2 tbsp Fresh Oregano and 1 tbsp Sea Salt Flakes.
Stir in 150g Pre Grated Mozzarella Cheese to the garlic butter mix.
Set the butter mix aside while the dough finishes rising – aim for room temp – don’t refrigerate or you won’t be able to spread it.
Once doubled, take off the covering and give the dough a good punch down.
Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and give it a quick light knead. No need for electric power here.
Cut the dough into 2 equalish size pieces and place one back under a covering for the time being. Roll the first into a rectangle about 1/2 cm thick. It will fight back, keep going, it will roll out and stay eventually.
Take 1/2 of the garlic and cheese mix and spread over the rectangle of dough – try and make it a fairly evenly spread and right to the edges.
Roll the rectangle tightly into a long sausage and then using the sharpest knife you have, cut the roll into 9 pieces of equal length. I cut the whole thing into thirds, then each third into three for maximum evenness.
Put the rolls on their ends in a large lined baking tray – I used a really big one, you could use 2 smaller with 9 rolls in each if needed. You need to leave much more space between the rolls that you think you need to. They expand much more than you think they’re going to so don’t overpack them or they will end up excessively tight textured.
Repeat with the second half of the dough until you have 18 rolls.
Lightly cover the tin and leave to rise, exactly the same as before for 1 hour. The dough should puff out and get closer to filling the tin.
Bake the rolls in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes until golden brown.
Eat warm. I’m drooling writing this!
Let me know what you think in the comments – do you prefer a loaf or a swirl?
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