Recipe Courtesy Jane Mason
The Book of Buns

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In my first book there is a description of a bread safari in the Western Cape. One of the amazing bakeries in that lovely region of the world is De Oude Bank Bakkerij in Stellenbosch. The bread is fantastic and these chocolate sticks are super fantastic. I have made the recipe up because I forgot to ask for it and I think the result is close to the real thing.





  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of sugar
  • baking sheets lined with non-stick parchment paper

Makes lots depending on how big you make them

Day One: making a predough

Mix together the water, flour and yeast in a bowl until they are well blended. Cover with clingfilm and allow to sit on the counter for 12–48 hours. The longer it sits the tastier it will be.

Day Two:making the dough

Put the flour into a big bowl and make a well. Sprinkle the sugar and yeast into the well and pour in the milk. Flick some flour over the milk to close the well and allow to rest for 1 hour. Add the salt and the predough from the night before. Bring it all together in a ball in the bowl. Pull it out onto the counter and knead well for 10 minutes.

Lightly flour a surface on which you can cut (you will see why later) and roll out the dough to a thickness of 5 mm. Brush the top with some of the melted butter for the filling and cover it with clingfilm. Allow to rest for 2 hours.


Remove the clingfilm. Scatter a third of the chocolate chips over the dough. Fold the left edge to the middle and fold the right edge in to meet it. Flour around the dough. Roll the dough flat again, brush some more melted butter on it and scatter over another third of the chocolate chips. Fold the dough as above and flour around it. Roll the dough flat again, brush some more melted butter on it and scatter over the final third of the chocolate chips. Fold the dough as above, lightly flour it and flip it over so the floury side is down. Flour the top, cover with a tea towel and allow to rest for 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 230°C (450°F) Gas 8.

Beat together the ingredients for the glaze and brush it over the dough. Using a knife, scraper or pizza cutter, cut the dough into strips about 2.5 cm wide.

If the strips are too long, cut them in half. Place the strips on the prepared baking sheets. Pop them in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven. It is hard to resist eating these warm and they are wonderful dipped into a cup of coffee or hot chocolate.

How to shape a tight ball (sticky dough):

Scrape the dough out of the bowl. [1] Divide the dough into the number of portions indicated in the recipe and flour your hands. [2] Cup one hand over the dough with your fingertips on the table and your palm touching the dough – don’t press down. [3] Move your hand around in a circle, keeping your fingers on the table and your palm on the dough. Use the table – and the fact that the dough is sticking to the table – to create the tension to pull the surface of the dough around itself. [4] Lift the sticky dough ball with a scraper to move it around. [5]

How to shape a tight sausage:

Stretch and fold the dough. [1, 2]  Roll the dough up tightly. Use your fingers to tuck the dough in as you roll and use your palms to stretch and shape the sausage. You should end up with a little footstool of dough. [3]

Book of BunsThis recipe is from The Book of Buns by Jane Mason. This gorgeous collection of more than 50 authentic, easy-to-follow recipes means you will be baking freshly baked buns at home over and over again. From all over the world, there is a bun to suit almost every occasion. Legend has it that buns were developed to enable poor people to buy bread with dignity. Not being able afford a loaf was humiliating because it was impossible to buy just a slice or two. There is every kind of bun on this beautiful book and the recipe instructions are brilliantly clear and are often accompanied by step-by-step photography which makes it both fun and easy to bake buns as part of your every day repertoire.

This recipe has been shared with permission from Rylands Peters & Small and is from The Book of Buns by Jane Mason. Priced at £13.00