Google Buns

faraway tree2I think I read the Enid Blyton stories of The “Faraway Tree” in the Enchanted Wood a gazillion times growing up. I recently bought a new copy just to re-live the great stories.

The stories tell the tale of three children that move into a house next to an Enchanted Wood and find a tree inhabited by magical characters…Dame Washalot, Mister Watzisname, Silky the Fairy and Moonface.

At the top of the tree in the branches were doorways to are different crazy lands like… “Roundabout Land”, “Land of Goodies”, “The Land of Snow and Ice”, “The Land of Giants”, “The Land of Do-As-You-Please”. The jeopardy in the books was the danger of getting stuck in a land and losing the exit back down the tree. That always scared me!!

Enid Blyton is known for her decadent delicacies in books and in the Faraway Tree you have thick cut sandwiches, homemade toffee shocks (that swell in your mouth and then explode), lemonade, pop cakes and the most interesting…Google buns!

“Come on,” said Moon-Face. “Come and eat a Google Bun and see what you think of it.”

Soon they were all sitting on the broad branches outside Moon-Face’s house, eating Pop Biscuits and Google Buns. The buns were most peculiar. They each had a very large currant in the middle, and this was filled with sherbet. So when you got to the currant and bit it the sherbet frothed out and filled your mouth with fine bubbles that tasted delicious. The children got a real surprise when they bit their currants, and Moon-Face almost fell off the branch with laughing.”

I usually make blueberry and ricotta buns hot out of the oven for Christmas morning, but thought that I could use this recipe to make the Google buns. Stuffing a raisin full of sherbert is not easy, but  I thought that covering blueberries in sherbert might be easier.

Google Buns Recipe
Adapted from Waitrose recipe.

Google Buns close upIngredients

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 25g sherbert
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 425g strong white bread flour,
  • 7g dried yeast
  • 75g butter (melt it if you are not using a bread-maker)
  • 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 50ml of water /  50ml milk
  • 250g ricotta cheese
  • 50g vanilla sugar
  • 150g fresh blueberries

Preparation

  1. Whisk the egg white in a bowl and paint the blueberries.
  2. Roll the blueberries in the sherbert and leave to dry.
  3. Mix the flour, yeast, butter, egg and caster sugar in a bowl. (If using a bread maker, add the flour, yeast, water/mile and half the seeds of the vanilla pod, butter, egg and caster sugar and put on dough setting)
  4. Add 100-150ml warm water and mix to a soft dough.
  5. Knead on a floured surface or board for 10 minutes until your dough is nice and elastic.
  6. Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours until the dough has doubled in size.
  7. Once the dough is ready (either from bread-maker or hand-made) cut out 6 x 4cm diameter circles out of the dough.
  8. Punch them down to flatten them slightly
  9. Preheat the oven to 220C, gas mark 7.
  10. Cut out 12 x 14cm squares of baking parchment.
  11. Mix the ricotta in a bowl with the vanilla sugar and the sherbert covered blueberries (leave some blueberries to top the buns).
  12. Spoon a tablespoon of the mixture into the centre of each piece of dough.
  13. Pull the edges of the dough up over  and over the filling to and pinch the edges of the dough together to make little bundles.
  14. Push the parchment paper / baking paper into  sections of a muffin tin.
  15. Pop in a bundle of dough into each.
  16. Put in a warm place and leave to rise for 45 minutes – covered either in a tea-towel or cling-film.
  17. Once they are ready – pop them in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  18. Sprinkle with any remaining blueberries and sherbert.
  19. Don’t eat them all at once!

These are great hot out of the oven…but be careful not to burn yourself on the blueberries.

Sherbert Blueberries

Fill the bun procesedBun in PaperGoogle buns on plate

Blueberry and Ricotta BunsGoogle bunsThe Faraway Tree

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Bananaman – Banana Cake

This is an homage to all thing BANANA!

Remember this from the 80s….”this is 29 Acacia road, and this is Eric, a schoolboy who lives an amazing double life. Because when Eric eats a banana, an amazing transformation occurs. Eric is Bananaman, ever alert for the call to action.” It had hilarious voice overs from Bill Oddie and the dulcet tones of Graeme Garden; not to mention the crazy banana suit with banana shoes and a banana cape.

But my new favourite Banana Man is the one from Adventure Time – actually made out of Banana.  He unfortunately seems to be at the centre of Jake the Dog’s death premonition. Finn and Jake terrorize the poor banana man who just wants to do his aerobics and finish his spaceship.

I had to also include this – from That Mitchell & Webb look – the first time I watched it – I laughed until banana came out of my nose and I was crying yellow tears.

Can you stomach any more banana fun? What about minion banana madness?  This is my husband’s favourite. Minion obsessive banana compulsive behaviour.

Banana Cake Recipe

Bananaman bananacakeIngredients

  • 100g butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 75g dark brown sugar
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp dark rum (Appleton)
  • 2 overripe bananas (3 if small ones) – roughly mashed
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 50g chopped walnuts
  • 100g raisins
  • 3 eggs
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C / Gas 4.
  2. Butter and line a loaf pan.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl until light.
  4. Add in the eggs with a tablespoon of the flour and whisk for a few minutes.
  5. Add in the bananas, rum, walnuts and raisins.
  6. Sift in the dry ingredients and fold together.
  7. Pour into the loaf pan.
  8. Pop in the oven for 60 minutes until golden and a sharp knife comes out cleanly.

Banana and walnut cake

I also intend buying these two great looking banana-books. Banana! by Ed Vere – about two monkeys fighting over a banana.

Ed Vere Banana

And also this book of  poetic and rhyming fun from Michael Rosen and my favourite illustrator, Quentin Blake.

Bananas in my ears

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