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Chelsea Buns

Chelsea Buns

The old Chelsea Bun House was a shop in Chelsea which sold buns in the 18th century. It was famous for its Chelsea bun.



  1. Scald the milk. Pour it into a large bowl and the1/3 cup of sugar, salt, shortening and the first 1/2 cup water. Stir until the shortening melts. Cool to lukewarm.
  2. Meanwhile, dissolve the 1 teaspoon sugar in the lukewarm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and let sit for 10 minutes, then stir briskly and add to the milk mixture. Beat in 2 1/2 cups of the flour. Then gradually add enough of the remaining flour to make a soft dough. Turn the dough onto a floured board and knead for 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball.
  3. Grease a bowl and place the dough in it, rolling the ball to grease the entire surface. Cover with a greased wax paper and a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for about 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.
  4. Punch down the dough, knead two or three times and let rest for 10 minutes on a board.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare a syrup for the buns. Put the first 3/4 cup brown sugar, 3 tablespoons butter and 3 tablespoons hot water in a pan. Stir over medium heat until the butter melts, then boil for 2 minutes. Immediately pour into two greased 10-inch round pans.
  6. Drain the cherries thoroughly and cut them into halves. Divide the cherries, raisins and pecans between the two pans, sprinkling them evenly over the bottoms.
  7. Roll the dough into a 14 x 9-inch rectangle. Spread with the soft butter. Sprinkle with the last 3/4 cup brown sugar and the cinnamon. Roll up from the long side into a tight roll. Cut into 16 even pieces and place the pieces, cut side down, in the prepared pans. Grease the tops, cover with greased wax paper and a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes, or until double in bulk.
  8. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake the buns for 25 minutes, or until golden brown.
  9. Place strips of wax paper under a rack. As soon as the buns come out of the oven, turn the pans upside down on rack. Allow the syrup to run over the buns and remove the pans.

Yield: 16 buns


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