I’m almost loathe to post this recipe for sweet potato bread buns because I’ll invariably get a load of people messaging saying ‘but you can have an Aldi bun for a few syns more’ blah blah. Listen, I know that. But why buy a car when you’ve got two legs? Sometimes it’s nice to mix things up and with soup season just around the corner, these make a nice side dish for whatever slop you turn your veg into. Plus, I don’t know about you but we always seem to have three or four sweet potatoes rolling around in our drawers. It’s like being haunted by a vegan – but how would you even go about telling whether a vegan is a ghost? God knows they’re pale, wispy and whining in real-life. I’m kidding. Please don’t write me letters, save your strength.
Things are still grim in Chubby Towers. Paul’s been flirting with a cold for a good couple of weeks and now it has really got him in its snotty grip. He’s currently lying on the sofa sniffing and snorting like Kerry Katona on giro day. He’s coughing like a 200-a-day-smoker/his mother and I could toast marshmallows on the end of his nose. You know that bit in the movie Misery when Annie Wilkes gets walloped with an iron at the end of the movie? That’s Paul. He’s in a bad way. Now, traditionally, we’d rattle off a few jokes about man-flu but I’ve always thought that was reductionist and mean. He’s just a soft arse. I’m sore because as a result of him snoring like an idling bus all night and keeping me awake and I’m tired of running around getting drinks and decongestants and nasal sprays and tissues – oh CHRIST the tissues, it’s like I’m living in the bedroom of the type of blokes who get stung by online vigilantes – and I’m reaching the end of my goodwill. I’d make a shit nurse, I’m not going to lie. Anything more than applying a plaster and I’d be pressing a pillow into their face and turning off the alarm bells.
There was a brief shining glimmer of goodness in my day, however. I was given a free packet of crisps by someone in town today. Because I’m naturally cynical, I spent five minutes looking around for the hidden camera crew who would be recording me opening the packet only to get a face full of bees or something mean. Also, because I’m naturally morbidly obese and a greedy bastard, I spent another twenty five minutes going around and around to the various people until I had seven free bags. I know, what a cad. Paul and I were once in the Metrocentre (the glitz! the glamour – it never ends because it never fucking begins) and there was a team of 12 people handing out bags of those Milky Way Magic Stars. We sharp calculated that if we split up we could grab 24 bags. Even better, once I had removed my glasses I could grab another twelve and better yet, when Paul put my glasses on, he was able to get another 12, even if he could see through time whilst doing so. Then, swap coats to repeat the whole affair, then go and sit in McDonalds for half an hour and go around again. In total we ended up with about 150 bags of Milky Way Magic Stars. This was back when we didn’t drive so it meant an hour trip home on the bus with more chocolate than any fat bloke has a reason for having but we definitely won that day.
I can tell you now though – the allure of so much free chocolate is sharp lost after the 35th bag. We were eating those bloody stars for days and even now the sight of that four-eyed twat the Milky Bar kid fills me with absolute rage. I swear I was reclining in the bath when one of those damned stars floated out of my belly button.
Paul just chimed in from the sofa to add his best freebie story, so let me treat you to a wee bit more. Back when Paul was a nurse he, and a lot of his colleagues, were often treated to fun little freebies from drugs companies and other parasites. Mugs, laser pointers, chocolates and, somewhat inexplicably, a doorbell. Because nothing says ‘best treatment for a prolapsed arsehole’ like a doorbell. Anyway, he was super excited to be given a face towel roughly the same shape as a little pink pill. The gimmick being that you added water and the whole thing would rehydrate, unfurl and give you a charming, if somewhat moist, free towel to wipe your sweaty face with. So enchanted by this fabulously pointless gimmick that he saved this little towel-pill until he was at the gym and, with a proper flourish, rehydrated it in the changing room gym. Here’s the thing: it was a great towel, but it’s hard to look debonair and stylish when you’re wiping a towel with VAGISIL imprinted across it in pink Mistral font. No wonder he doesn’t bother with gyms now, the poor bugger is scarred.
Right, let’s get to the bread, eh?
to make sweet potato bread buns, you’ll need:
- 300g of sweet potato – either leftover mash or some that you’ve made especially – just peel, boil and mash it as smooth as possible
- 450g of plain flour (this makes enough for 18 buns – they’re not huge but they’re tasty – so this works out at 4 syns each)
- 1 packet of yeast (1 syn – but damn it if I’m splitting that between 18)
- 120ml of warm water
- good pinch of salt and pepper
- one egg
- poppy seeds – if you want them, syn them, but you don’t need to add them onto the top
to make sweet potato bread buns, you should:
- either in a big bowl or a stand mixer with a dough hook (we use our Kenwood Chef, we love it), add the flour, mashed sweet potato on one side, water on the other, yeast on another side and get bloody mixing
- once it’s starting to come together, add the salt and pepper
- you want to mix it until it’s all come together nicely – you want it smooth and elastic
- drop it into a bowl and cover with clingfilm – then leave to double in size for about an hour in a warm room
- take out, divide into 18 small balls, put onto a non-stick baking tray or two
- cover with clingfilm and allow to double again for an hour
- crack and beat the egg then smear the top of each bun with good old beaten egg
- cook in a pre-heated oven for about 25 minutes on 180 degrees
- serve – it’s just that easy!