Dilkush –  Coconut Stuffed  Sweet Buns

 This  is  another  nostalgia  inspired   bread – Dilkush.   The name  literally  translates to – “Happy Heart”. These  are the Coconut  and  tuti fruiti (candied  fruits & peels )  stuffed  buns  sold  in the  neighborhood  bakeries  of my childhood.   It  was  kind  of   exotic  in a  land  where  home  baking  never  caught  on.  Sweet   fillings  in a   soft   bread  ,  there  definitely are  a  few  reasons  to be  happy  here .  As they  bake  the  sweet  aromas  fill the  air , taking  me  back  to the   beaches  and  warm  waters ,  and  gentle  breezes . Fresh from the  oven these  buns  were  heavenly .   Over  the  years   this  memory has  inspired  me  to make  many   sweet buns  and  rolls.   But  nothing  beats  the  original  flavors .   Here is   my heavenly  Dilkush !!!

The   recipe  calls  for a  basic  sweet   dough   and   coconut  stuffing .  Traditionally   no binders   were used in the  stuffing  .  Freshly  grated   coconut   mixed  with a   little  sugar   provides  just  enough  moisture  to keep  the light  stuffing in place .   I like  to bring  out  the   flavors  more  by infusing  the  dough   with   cardamom and  coconut  flavors .
 The  first  step is  to  bloom the  yeast  .  Heat 1/4 C  milk  till just  warm to  touch (110°F).  Add 1 tsp  sugar  and  mix well .  Sprinkle  the  yeast on top  and  let  it rest  undisturbed for 5  to 10  minutes . A good   quality yeast  would  have  become  active  and  bubbled  vigorously by then .  It   should  look  similar  to   the  picture  above . Take a  large  mixing  bowl   and   add  the   flour   sugar , powdered  cardamom ,  salt ,  1/4 C grated coconut and  softened  butter .   Mix  well   ,  make a  hole in the  center  and add   the  activated  yeast  to it . Slowly add  the  milk to the   flour  and  knead  until all the  flour  comes  together and  forms a   dough . It   should  not  be  too  stiff .  Knead gently until the   the  dough  becomes  soft  and  elastic ,  about  10 to 15  minutes . If  the   dough is  sticky add a  few  more  tablespoons of  flour  and  knead  to  incorporate  . If  it  is  too dry add a few  more  drops of  milk   and  knead  to make  it  more  pliable .  Transfer to an   oiled  bowl  and   cover  with a  plastic  wrap  or   moist   kitchen  towel and set aside to  double in a  warm place .
While  the   dough is  rising , prepare  the   filling .   Mix  the   fresh  grated  coconut  a  sugar  cardamom  ,  and   the  dry fruits and  nuts  together .    Here  I have added dried  cranberries  for a  burst  of  color . Chopped  nuts  ,   raisins , candied peel  are all   good options  as well .  Thawed  frozen   grated  coconut   can be  substituted  for   fresh  as well  .Punch   down  the   dough  and   turn it  out   to a   lightly floured   kneading  surface .   Cut  into 4  equal  parts   form  into 4  balls   and return  3  of  the  pieces  back into the  bowl  . Keep  it covered .
Roll out one  dough ball into a   circle  of   about 8 in in  diameter .   Transfer  the  circle onto a  baking  sheet  lined   with  parchment paper or  lightly sprayed  with oil . Spread  half  the   filling   evenly  on it  leaving  about  half  an  inch  from the   sides  uncovered .  Dip a  pastry brush in  water  and  lightly brush   along the  uncovered  side .  This  is   an optional  step .  Take  another  piece  of  the  dough  and  roll out  into  a  circle   just a  little  bigger  than  the   first  and  place on  top   of  the   first  one as  in  the   picture .  Press  along  the   sides   for a tight   seal .  Cover   with a  plastic  wrap   and  set  aside  to   rise in a  warm  place  until  almost   doubled   about  30 to 45  minutes .  Repeat   with the  other  pieces .
Alternately    the   dough  can be  divided into 12  equal  pieces  .  Flatten   each piece  into  about 4 inch  circles .    Divide  the   filling  into 12  equal portions . Place one  portion of the  filling  in  the center of  the    flattened  circle  and   bring  up  the    sides  to  close  in the  middle .   Turn  the ball  upside   down  , place on the  baking  sheet  and   cover  and  let  it   rise  till  almost   doubled . Preheat  the  oven to  400 °F (200 °C ).  Add 1 Tsp  warm  water  to  2Tbsp  honey  mix  well  and  brush  the  top of  the  buns .   Transfer  to the  preheated  oven  and   turn  the  heat  down to 375°F (190°C)  Bake  20 to 25 minutes  until  the  tops  golden   brown . Remove   from the oven  ,  cool on the pan  for  5  minutes . Transfer  to  a  cooling  rack .

Notes :

  • If  you are using desiccated  coconut  for  the   filling ,  add about 3 Tbsp  hot  water  to  the   filling  mixture .  and  mix  well .
  • This   dough  makes   wonderful  coconut   buns  –  without  the   filling.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: Dozen buns or Two 8" round loaves



Bread Dough
Bread/ All Purpose Flour - 400 gm (3 1/4 C)
Butter - 45 gms (3 Tbsp)
Salt - 8 gms (1 Tsp)
Sugar - 50 gm (4 Tbsp )
Grated Coconut - 30 gm (4 Tbsp) Fresh / Frozen
Milk - 210 gms (1 C)
Yeast - 8 gms(2 Tsp)
Cardamom Powder - a Pinch (1/8 Tsp)
Grated Coconut - 11/2 C (Fresh / Frozen) loosely packed
Sugar - 100 gms (1/2 C )
Cardamom Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Raisins / Dried fruits - 3/4 C
For Glaze
Honey - 2 Tbsp
Hot Water - 1 Tsp


Warm 1/4 C milk (50 gms) of milk to 10°F (warm to touch) and mix with1 tsp sugar . Sprinkle the yeast on top and set aside to bloom for 5 to 10 minutes .

In a large mixing bowl take all the remaining ingredients for the bread dough , except the milk , and stir to combine . Make a well in the mixture and add the activated yeast as well as half the remaining milk .Knead to make a soft pliable dough , adding the remaining milk slowly as required.Knead for 10 to 15 minutes until the dough is soft and elastic .Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl , cover and set aside to rise in a warm place till doubled (about 1 to 1.5 hrs).

Mix the ingredients for the filling and set aside (Refer to notes).

Punch down the dough and divide into 4 equal pieces . (For buns refer to the instructions above). Keep the dough covered .Roll a piece of dough into a disc of about 8" in diameter .Transfer the disc on to a baking tray lined with parchment paper .Spread half the filling on the disk leaving about 1/2 " gap from the edges .Dip a pastry brush in water and brush uncovered portion .Roll out another piece of dough into a disc slightly bigger than the first one .Place over the first disc, pressing on the sides to seal .Cover with a plastic wrap or moist kitchen towel .Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough .Set aside to proof until almost doubled.

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) .Mix 2 Tbsps of honey with 1 Tsp of hot water and brush the tops of the bread .Transfer to the oven . Reduce temperature to 375°F (190°C) and bake for 15 to 20 minutes , until the tops are turn light brown.Remove from the oven .

Cool in the tray for 5 minutes . Transfer to a cooling rack .



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