I love this recipe because I'm impatient. Yep, because I'm impatient and because it's delicious and it's a great one to make for guests. While I love yeasted doughs, and I've learned shortcuts in the kitchen are a no-go. Sometimes, finding a more accessible way to cook or bake something, is okay. Typically, buns like these require time, because they require yeast. But in this case, these buns don't need yeast, therefore they don't need the time to rise, and they're just as satisfying, bready, subtly sweet, and crave-worthy. Not so sweet you feel guilty about eating them, but sweet enough to perk up your taste buds. They come together quickly and you can have it at the table within the hour. The perks of being impatient, amiright?
I originally developed this recipe just over a year ago and I never stopped thinking about it. I was inspired by the good ol' cinnamon bun minus the sugary frosting, and irresistible Swedish buns and Danish breads from the Scandi side of the world. When I cross-tested it recently I made it better so it feeds more mouths, 12 to be exact. Serve warm with friends and family.
whole-wheat cardamom & walnut buns
makes 12 buns
for the filling:
1 cup walnuts, chopped
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing pan
½ cup coconut palm sugar or organic sugar, plus more for dusting
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. fine sea salt
for the dough:
1½ cups whole-wheat flour, plus more for dusting
½ cup all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. coconut palm sugar or organic sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. fine sea salt
¼ tsp. ground cardamom
¾ cup almond milk or milk of choice
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2½ tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 10-inch cake pan with butter (I used a nonstick).
For filling, in a medium bowl, mix all ingredients until well combined. Set aside.
For the dough, in a large bowl, whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom. Make a well in the center and slowly whisk in milk, lemon juice, and butter. With a rubber spatula mix until well combined and the dough is uniform. Knead with your hands a few times until dough is soft.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to a 12-by-8-inch rectangle. With the longest edge facing you, gently spread the filing over dough leaving a 1-inch border. Roll away from you into a log. Slice into 1-inch pieces to get 12 buns.
Arrange the dough, leaving some room between each, in prepared cake pan. Brush with egg wash and lightly dust with sugar.
Bake until buns are golden, 35 to 40 minutes. To serve, either invert onto a serving plate or remove with a spatula (depending what you're feeling like!). Inverting will give you a flatter look (see pic), but I love serving them as is, too. Either way, be sure to serve warm.