Sunday, 22 March 2009

Mini Melon-pans

These are not ice creams...

and they are not muffins either.

They are actually mini melon pans...sweet bread buns covered with a layer of crispy pastry dough. Besides the plain buns, there are also green tea and chocolate ones. The original recipe calls for baking 3 mini buns in a special mould. Since I don't have such moulds, I baked them separately in my muffin cups (it seems like I take forever to finish using up all my muffin liners!). The finished buns looked almost like muffins or scoops of ice creams :)

I could have added too much flour to the pastry dough, and as a result, the dough was quite dry and crumbled easily while I try to wrap it over the bread dough. Upon baking, the pastry crust was a bit too hard :(

Fortunately, the texture of the bread was fine, it was soft and tasted good on it's own. I like the green tea version best, and as usual, my kids prefer the chocolate ones.

(makes 12 mini buns)

Dough Ingredients:
160g bread flour
30g cake flour
25g caster sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp instant yeast
10g milk powder
1 egg yolk
100ml water
15g unsalted butter

1/2 tsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp green tea powder

Pastry Ingredients:
45g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
40g icing sugar
1 egg yolk
10g milk powder
70g cake flour

1/2 tsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp green tea powder

  1. Prepare Bread Dough - Place water, egg yolk, salt, sugar, bread flour, cake flour, milk powder and yeast in the pan of the bread machine (according to the sequence as stated in the instruction manual of your bread machine). Select the Dough function of the bread machine and press start. After about 8mins of kneading (the ingredients should form a smooth dough by now), add in the 15g of butter. Let the machine continue to knead the dough. After the kneading cycle has stopped (20mins), Stop and Restart the machine. Continue to let the machine knead for another 10mins.
  2. Stop the machine and remove dough from the bread pan. Divide the dough into 3 equal portions (about 120g each). Take one portion of the dough and knead in cocoa powder, until the cocoa powder is fully incorporated into the dough. Repeat the same for the other dough with green tea powder. Leave the third dough plain. Shape each dough into a smooth round and place in separate mixing bowls, cover with cling wrap and let them rise till double in volume about 50 ~ 90mins.
  3. Prepare Pastry Dough - With an electric mixer or a manual whisk, cream butter & icing sugar till pale and fluffy. Add in egg yolk gradually and beat well. Add in milk powder and cake flour. Fold with a spatula and gather the mixture to form a dough. Divide the pastry into 3 equal portions. Knead in cocoa powder, green tea powder separately into two of the portions, leave the 3rd portion plain. Divide each pastry dough into 4 smaller portions. You should have 12 doughs in total. Cover with cling wrap and leave it aside for 10 mins.
  4. When ready, remove bread doughs and give each dough a few light kneading on a lightly floured work surface. Press out the trapped air as your knead. Divide each dough further into 4 smaller portions (about 30g each) and shape into balls.
  5. Flatten each pastry dough into a round disc. Wrap each bread dough with it's corresponding pastry dough. Wrap the pastry dough over about 2/3 of the bread dough, leaving the bottom 1/3 unwrapped.
  6. Place doughs in paper muffin cups, cover loosely with a damp cloth or cling wrap and let dough proof for 25 - 30mins or till the dough reaches almost to the rim of the paper cup.
  7. Bake at preheated oven at 190 degC for about 18 mins. Rotate the buns halfway into baking to ensure even browning. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack
Recipe adapted from 孟老师的100道面包


Elyse said...

Wow! These are like the most precious treats ever!! I love how the tops fluff up. What a neat, delicious looking bite!

grub said...

Dear HHB,

Hehehe, this mini buns look really cute! Can you bake them in a normal oven or do you bake them in a bread machine oven?



Elin Chia said...


Wow, these mini melon pan looks yum yum and I will definitely try it out next. Btw thanks for the ice cream link.

I juz make a tupper of kimchi (first time making it:P) will want to try out the kimchi chigae when the kimchi is ready in a few days time.

Thanks for sharing these wonderful recipes. Love your blog!

Regard, Elin

Kitchen Corner said...

Oh.. you're creative! I haven't try to bake this kind of buns in the muffin casing. I shall try it next time. Thanks for sharing!

youfei said...


These looks so cool! I'd love to try them someday! =)


asieja said...

sweet & beautifull

pepsakoy said...

Lovely ! There's no chance that I'm gonna miss giving it a try...

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hi Happy Home Baking,
I noticed that u have omit the cheese powder which is stated in the original you think it affects the overall of the bread? Just curious, thanks.

Baking Monster said...

these look really interesting I want to try them. :)

Talita said...

How cute they look! Surely is delicious!

Anonymous said...

The texture looks perfect! I wish I could have fluffy buns like these every morning!

Anonymous said...

May I know what brand is your bread machine as I am thinking of getting one after reading your bread recipes.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Honey Bee Sweets, yes I left out the cheese powder as I find it weird to have it in this type of bread. Since the amount (5g) is very little, it didn't have any effects on the finished bread.

Anonymous said...

Actually I do find it strange too. In some cases, the recipe calls for kraft cheese in chocolate bread and also several uses cheese powder etc But some how the bread always turn out tasting good....Guess they have their reasons. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi,HHB, I've tried this recipe twice fr the same book , replacing the topping recipe with coffee-flavoured Mexican Bun topping. First time i omitted the cheese powder, and second time with cheese powder, and agreed with you that there is not much difference though.Does your topping turn out more like cookies?
One question I will like to ask, I'm using the Bluesky too,you mentioned that after the first 20mins of dough function, stop to restart for another 10 mins. In my case, when I stop to restart after 20mins,the machine just couldn't restart and display "error",probably the machine is a bit too warm for the dough function to start again.Do you have similar encounters?


特蕾莎(仙子) said...

It looks nice~~

Yan said...

very adorable bakes ....

you are amazing!


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Anonymous, the brand of my bread machine is Bluesky. I bought it from Carrefour at less than $70.

Hi Sem, yes, the topping is cookie like...I thought may have added too much flour or my measurements of the ingredients was not accurate, my scale can only read up to 10g!
I have no problem with re-starting the machine. You need to press the stop button and hold for a few seconds and the cycle will stop. Then, push the start button and you can select the Dough setting again. I usually leave the lid open when it is kneading (except for the first few mins when the machine is mixing the ingredients to avoid flour flying out of the pan).

Anonymous said...

this is something interesting. and the ingredients look normal.. maybe i can try this too

thinkingmama said...

Hi, recently I have also been getting the HHH error in the bread machine. I will try to leave it open and try again.

Can I know for the breads you make right, is the yeast smell/taste very strong? I find that my breads/bun have this problem. I'm using Bake King's yeast. Can you advise what has gone wrong?


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Jane,
I bought my breadmachine two years ago, maybe the model/make is slightly different, that could be the reason why I don't encounter this problem.
I use the same brand of instant yeast. The yeast taste is not strong, I could only smell the yeast when it is a raw dough (usually after the 1st proof), once baked, there is no yeast smell.
I suspect it could be due to the proofing. You may have over-proofed the dough, or you may have let the dough proof at too high a temperature and as a result the dough rise too quickly (I let the dough proof at room temperature which is around 28-30degC for 1-1.5hrs for the 1st proof). Not sure whether these are the reasons? If not, then it could be due to kneading or your bread was not cooked through?

sherlyn said...

Hi HHB, the buns look lovely. You sure those are mini muffin liners? my muffin liners fly like nobody's business then when I am hot in baking. Now I am recovering from a 10 day fever and still taking antibiotic for lung infection. Hope to get on with my life real soon. I have yet to get this "meng Lao Shi" book .. perhaps, shd just add it to my collection of the other two. haha.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Sherlyn, sorry to hear that you have been sick for so long. I hope you are feeling better now.
No, those are not mini muffin liners, although it is quite small compared to the plain ones. I don't own this book, I borrowed the book from the library sometime back, and I simply copied down those recipes that I like :)

Anonymous said...

can i check with you sth about the pullman tin for baking bread? may i know where u bought yours? and what is the purpose of the cover? do we leave the cover on the tin when the bread is baking? sorry , so many questions, i am thinking whether to buy one but not sure how to use it..

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Octopusmum, I bought the pullman tin (the smaller one) from Phoon Huat. The finished loaf will be the same size as those Gardenia bread loaf. However, I read that those availabe at Sun Lik are of better quality.
If you are baking a square loaf, you will need to cover the lid when baking. I usually put the lid on just before baking (so that I can see the progress of the dough) or when the dough has risen up to 90% of the height of the tin. If you want to bake a loaf that has got a rounded top then don't use the lid when baking. Hope this helps.

thinkingmama said...

Hi, I made a loaf of bread yesterday and following your advice, I did not let it proof too long. There is no yeast smell already. :) thanks for the advice and I really think that overproofing was the reason.

Another question, for hand kneading, do you really knead until no dough sticks to your hand? I gave up kneading once the dough is less sticky. Is this ok? My window pane test always fail or rather I do not know how to do a proper window pane test.


Anonymous said...


thks for your prompt reply. feel like popping over to Sun Lik to check out the tins right now but then, must wait until lunch time:(
one more question, will there be a problem of the bread sticking to the cover after baking?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Octopusmum, you will need to grease the pan, the sides, bottom and the inside of the lid. I usually use veg oil. I have no problem with the lid sticking to the bread, but after using the pan for quite some time, lately, I have problem unmolding the bread as it seems to get stuck to the sides even though I grease it very well. I read somewhere that it is due to the residuals left on the pan. So now I had to line it with parchment paper to save the trouble :(

Hi Jane, oh so it is really due to over-proofing! Thank you for asking the question, we both have learned something :)

Tell you what, I made some plain rolls yesterday by hand. I kneaded for about 30mins! The dough was quite easy to work with, but like you, I can't really tell whether it has passed the pane test! So I gave up after 30mins and just let it proof! I usually use the time as a limit, as long as I have kneaded for about 25-30mins, by then, the dough will no longer stick to my hand and feel smooth, even though it doesn't seems to pass the test, I will just stop and hope for the best. How long do you spend kneading the dough?

Anonymous said...


tks for the tip, will bear that in mind if i ever get the tin!

thinkingmama said...

my kneading was not the traditional way of kneading. I put it in a big bowl and roll the dough about infront of the TV, multitasking ma. hahahha. I think i did abt 30 mins too. As soon as I felt that it was less sticky, I stopped 'playing' with it and let it proof.

It rose to about 80% of the tin (we have the same one) and when baking, it did not rise any more. Is it normal?

Thank goodness the bread turned out to be soft. I was proofing and waiting till almost 1am when it finally finished baking.

Anonymous said...

What a cute melon pan.....At first I thought that it was a muffin....ha ha....

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Jane, wow your method is really unconventional! I hope you can make a bread by using the traditional way of kneading. I am sure there's a difference in the finished bread. If you knead the dough in a bowl (unless you have a bowl as big as a baking tray) you will not be able to knead the dough until it is fully developed.
The bread should rise and expand further when it is baking (it's known as 'oven spring'), it is either due to the kneading/proofing or your oven temperature is not accurate, did you preheat your oven?
Not sure whether I am asking too much, but I really really really hope you can knead the dough the proper way, ie on a work surface. There are many videos online to show you how to go about kneading, I urge you to take a look at them and try it out.

Anonymous said...

you are always give the measurements in gms:-)
How can make into cup.. help me please... i am fan of urs..


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Anonymous, yes I use a scale to measure the ingredients, I have problem with recipes using cups. You can refer to this site ( for converting ingredients from gms to cups.

Elena said...

Hi, thank you so much for your recipe! I'm an amateur baker and i thought that this would be hard to make.. but i tried it nevertheless and I'm very surprised and happy the melon breads came out nice and tasty ^^ ~ thank u so much ~~

zainuddin said...

thanks for share

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I'm Kelly :)
Been trying out some of your bread recipes and my hub and son love it. :) thanks for sharing your recipes..
Been thinking of trying this, but quite difficult for me to have bat 3-4 hrs free in a stretch. Wondering if I can put the pastry douGh in the fridge like maybe in the morning and work on it again in the evening when I have the time? Thanks :)

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Kelly, yes you may prepare the pastry dough in advance, cover with cling wrap and keep in the fridge. Remove from fridge about 15mins to allow it to soften before working on it. Happy baking :)

Anonymous said...

Can I make this in the form of a round bun? If so, how long should the baking time be?

Anonymous said...

And I forgot to ask, can I use all purpose flour instead of bread flour?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, please use bread flour.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi you can make it into round buns, baking time should be around 15-20mins depending on your oven. hope this helps.