Yemenite Honeycomb Bread (Khaliat Al Nahl)
photo by Mary F.
- Ready In:
48 small buns
- 3 1⁄2 cups bread flour
- 1⁄4 cup warm milk
- 2 teaspoons yeast
- 1⁄4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened yogurt
- 1⁄2 - 2⁄3 cup warm water
- 8 ounces cheese (kiri cheese or 8 oz. cream cheese cut into 48 pieces)
- 1 tablespoon milk, for the wash
- sesame seeds (both white and black seeds)
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon orange blossom water
- Activate the yeast by adding it to ¼ cup warm milk. Then add in the sugar, salt, flour, yogurt, egg, butter, ¼ cup sugar, and water. Add the water in slowly and stop when the dough is smooth but not too sticky to work with. Knead for about 15 minutes until smooth.
- Let the dough rise for about 1 hour in a warm place. If it is cold in your house, try placing in the oven (not turned on).
- Grease a 14 inch round baking pan or 2 smaller baking pans if you prefer. Separate the dough into 48 equal sized pieces. I do this by first splitting it into 3 equal pieces then splitting each piece in half to make six, then in half again to make 12, 24, 48 etc.
- Cut the cheese into 48 pieces also. I used 12 kiri cheeses which I cut each into 4 smaller pieces. Take a piece of the dough and flatten it out. Then place a piece of cheese inside. Pinch it closed with your fingers and roll it into a smooth ball.
- Place it into the prepared pan. Continue with the rest of the dough until you have finished. You need to leave about ½ space between the dough balls to allow room for them to rise. Cover and let rise until doubled in size for 1-1.5 hours.
- Paint the tops of the dough with 1 tablespoons milk. Then sprinkle black and white sesame seeds on top. Place in preheated 375 F oven for 20-25 minutes.
- In the meantime prepare the sugar syrup by heating 2 cups sugar an 1 cup water over medium high heat. Let it boil for 5-10 minutes. Then add 1 tablespoons honey and 1 tablespoons of orange blossom water. (You can also substitute the flavor of your choice).
- Remove the buns from the oven and pour the sugar syrup on the top.
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