Don’t you just totally love it when you walk into the house and you smell that best of smells; freshly baked bread? And then to take it out of the oven and the moment you hear that soft crack when you break of a piece of warm crust and pop it in your mouth, unable to resist? O how I wish that scenario actually happened here in this very house!

Instead I tend to end up with bread that is either too dry, too firm or just plain disappointing… In all of the before three cases, it still beats getting the bread of the supermarket. Not that they have bad bread perse, but it’s just not the same as homemade, now is it? So yes, I do struggle with breadbaking. I followed a breadcourse before as you know, but as with many such things, haven’t baked a bread since. It was an enormously interesting course and I learned a lot but it was also pretty daunting to do all that stuff yourself. So when I learned about Levine’s workshop I decided that’s where I wanted to go.


She approaches the whole breadbaking from a homebaking perspective, so I felt right at ease and with her guidance I actually started to feel confident I could maybe do this myself at home without too much danger of messing up the bread. We made two types of bread; the soft buns you see above and some crusty pistolets that I haven’t eaten yet. Too much bread to all eat in one go so they went straight into the freezer. But if the lunch we had is anything to go by then I just know that it is going to be awesome too. O and Levine gave us some amazing baguette too, which basically means I will have to come back to learn how to make those too.


For now I will tempt you with this recipe for soft buns, which you can also make into the pretty ‘braided’ buns you see on top and below. And trust me when I say that it took me a while to make anything resembling a knot with that bread but it was fun and if you can’t do that you can always just keep them round!


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Soft buns


  • 560 g flour Good quality
  • 9 g yeast dry yeast
  • 10 g sugar
  • 60 g butter unsalted, at roomtemperature
  • 100 g egg At roomtemperatue, whisked loosely
  • 250 g full fat milk lukewarm
  • 10 g salt
  • baking tin of 24 cm greased

Additional ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • baking trays lined with baking paper

Additional ingredients (Optional)

  • poppyseed or sesameseed for the top


  • Kneading the dough in the kitchenaid; put all ingredients, except the butter in a bowl. Stir together with a wooden spoon. Using the doughhook, knead the dough for about 8 minutes and then add slowly add the butter and keep kneading until the dough feels pliable and is stretchy. It should feel as sticky as a post-it note. It is usually around 10-15 minutes.
  • If you're kneading by hand; put all ingredients into a large bowl. Stir with a wooden spoon until the flour gets moist. Turn out onto a worksurface and knead by hand for about 15-20 minutes til you have a pliable dough. Don't ad extra flour if it's not really necessary; the dough will get less sticky during the kneading.
  • 1st rise; Grease a large bowl with some oil and put the dough in. Turn once so all sides are covered with oil. Cover the bowl and leave the dough to stand at roomtemperature for about 1 hour so it doubles in volume.
  • Shaping: Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled workbench. Divide with a doughcutter into 16 equal parts and make them into little balls. Leave those covered for about 10 minutes and round them again firmly.
  • For separate buns: put the balls of dough onto a baking tray a few centimeters apart. If they do not fit onto one tray take your other tray and divide them over the trays. Bake them one after the other.
  • Breadcrown: Divide 8 balls of dough into a baking tin and put the other 8 in the other one.
  • Coat the dough balls with a little bit of eggwash and sprinkle with seeds if you want to.
  • Second rise; leave them covered at roomtemperature for about 60 minutes until almost doubled in size. The dough has risen enough once you press a finger in and it slowly moved back.
  • During the second raise preheat the oven to 200 C.
  • Bake the buns for 15-20 minutes brown. Remove from the baking tins or from the baking trays and leave to cool on a cooling rack. You can freeze these really well. You can use the same dough to also make little knots in your bread. See notes


The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.

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