Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Sweet yeast dough Monkey bread pull- apart muffins

My obsession with sweet yeast baked goods has taken a turn for the best recently. Tracking down a unique recipe is pleasing enough, but when juxtaposed with an original thought it can turn into a magical, and dare I say it, euphoric experience. I’m only saying this because it happened to me last week. Twice.

The first was a Sweet yeast dough Monkey bread pull- apart muffins. A mouthful. The second time was a lemon curd tart I made with a salted butter Speculaas Pâte sablée.

I found out about an American phenomena called ‘monkey bread’. Loosely based on pastry this is a violent recipe involving some cinnamon, but mainly the brutal drowning of industrial frozen biscuit dough chunks into what can only be described as butter. It was the cinnamon that caught my attention.

I would own this monkey bread, I thought. The industrial biscuit was quickly substituted with a sweet yeast dough recipe, making this a high quality muffin version of the cinnamon delight.

The dough is cut into bite size chunks before it is baked, so it has an ergonomic design, what with the bites pulling apart.

Sweet yeast, cinnamon and butter turned toffee pastry that’s user friendly – what more can and should pastry be?!?!

The result is breath taking and mouth watering and left me gob smacked and flabbergasted.

Sweet yeast Monkey bread pull- apart muffins

Makes about 15 muffins

For the dough

500 grams sifted all purpose organic flour

1 ¼ teaspoon salt

1 ½ teaspoon active dry yeast

320 ml milk

75 grams butter

For the dry sugar cinnamon mixture

2 cup brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

3 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground cardamon

For the butter sugar mixture

40 grams cold salted butter, diced

In a large bowl combine all the ingredients. Knead for about 5-8 minutes, either by hand or stand mixer until dough is smooth and elastic.

Cover the dough with a clean dishtowel and leave to rise for approx. 45 minutes at room temperature.

Divide the dough in 15 pieces. Form into little ball shapes, cover and leave for 20 minutes.

In a small bowl mix together the ingredients for the sugar cinnamon mixture.

Grease a muffin pan with butter, dust it with flour and set aside.

Turn out one ball of dough at a time onto lightly floured surface. Press it with your hands until it is about 1 cm thick. Cut the dough into small chunks, about the size of a thumb and roll them in the sugar cinnamon mixture until covered. Set aside. Do the same with all the remaining dough balls.

Add the cold butter into the sugar cinnamon mixture and mix with your hands until combined.

Fill each muffin to the halfway point with dough chunks, softly packing them in. sprinkle about a tablespoon of the sugar mixture, then top with more dough chunks, packing lightly. Finish with more sugar mixture.

Bake at 175°C degrees for about 12-15 minutes but keep an eye on them. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes.

Run a sharp knife around the edges of each muffin then gently scoop out of the muffin tin.

This is when the magic happens and the sugar and butter have turned into oozing, juicy toffee.


  1. I will try this immediately. Is this weekend too soon? And will share pics, for sure. Dreaming about it will get me through the week!