Bring the Teddy Bear Picnic to life with these adorable Teddy Bear Buns. Soft and buttery enriched dough is coated in icing and then rolled in toasted coconut. Its the most delicious way to celebrate World Book Day!
If Teddy Bears could bring one thing to their woodland picnic I think they’d be pretty happy with these. I absolutely love bringing bakes to life, adding character and personality just makes the process much more enjoyable, and that’s just me as an adult so imagine how much fun it is for little kids.
TIPS FOR BAKING AN ENRICHED DOUGH
Enriched dough is a normal dough with added ingredients to enrich it’s flavour such as butter, oil, eggs, sugar or other flavouring like zests and spices.
Wait before adding all the ingredients
Adding lots of other ingredients can weaken the structure of the gluten in bread so to ensure you get a good rise and a good crumb it’s wise to show a little love to the classic bread ingredients first to develop the gluten. Start by kneading together Flour and water first for a little bit, then go ahead and add in the rest of the ingredients
It will take longer to prove
The thing with yeast is that it’s doesn’t like change so much and is quite comfortable with it’s little life with flour and water alone. Adding other ingredients to the mix gets it back up a bit so it tends to work slower in protest. Generally where a normal dough will take around 1 hour to double in size, an enriched dough will usually be about 2 hours or more. Sometimes it’s useful to add in a little extra yeast to compensate for any sugar that has been added too as this gives it a little boost.
Chill your dough
If you’d added in lots of butter and eggs you will undoubtedly have a wet and sticky dough to work with. This is fine as it’s supposed to be this way but to make it a little easier to work with try chilling it in the fridge before shaping it as this will solidify the fats inside and make it easier to handle.
Alternatively you could do an overnight prove too, the added bonus of this is that breads proved overnight in the fridge develop a much deeper flavour.
HOW TO SHAPE THE TEDDY BEAR BUNS
This is the fun part. To shape these buns into cute little bear heads you’ll need to cut the dough into seven equal parts. Roll six of these into balls for the bear heads and then cut the remaining part into 12 smaller balls for the bear ears. To assemble lay the six bear heads onto a baking tray and place two smaller balls at the top for their ears, putting a little pressure to help them fuse together.
Don’t worry too much at this stage if they haven’t stuck together completely as during the final prove and bake they will properly fuse together.
BRINGING THE TEDDY BEAR BUNS TO LIFE
My favourite part is bringing the bears to life! I have a huge affection for this in all bakes as I just love adding a personality. My baking cupboard is well stocked with these Wilton Edible Eyes and they’re a great decoration to have to hand if you love baking with My Kitchen Drawer.
To create the soft and cuddly teddybear fur effect I used coconut, but toasted it so it turned golden brown. To help it stick, the buns were first dipped in a light brown coloured icing sugar which is tinted with cocoa powder. Then to decorate for the mouth and nose I used a giant white chocolate button a chocolate chip and a writing pen.
It’s very simple but really effective.
If you like bringing bakes to life too you should also try out these bakes
Shop the ingredients
I would love it if you tagged me @mykitchendrawer on Instagram if you make these Teddy Bear Buns. It’s the biggest honour to see my recipes come to life in your kitchen and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to drop me a message. Happy baking!
For the dough
- 125 g Strong White Flour
- 125 g Plain Flour
- 1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 30 g melted butter
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 50 ml warm milk
- 1 egg
- 50 ml warm water
- 100 g desiccated coconut
- 150 g icing sugar
- 3 tbsp milk
- 6 giant white chocolate buttons
- 6 chocolate chips
- 12 edible eyes
- Chocolate icing pen
- 1/4 tsp coco powder
For the dough
- Mix both flours together in bowl and add the yeast to one side of the bowl and salt to the other side of the bowl.
- Make a well in the centre and add the butter, sugar, milk and eggs and bring the mixture together. Add the water gradually until it forms a soft and sticky dough.
- Knead the dough together on a floured surface for about 10 minutes until it feels smooth and stretchy. You can test if the gluten has developed by doing the window pane test and stretching the dough out to see it stretches enough for you to see through it. If it breaks early or feels tough, carry on kneading.
- When it's kneaded, place it into a well oiled bowl, cover it with cling film, or a warm damp towel and leave to prove in a warm place for 2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Once proved, take the dough out of the bowl and press it down to knock out all the air. Knead it again until smooth then divide it into 7 even pieces. Shape 6 of these peices into round buns and arrange on a lined baking tray about 1 inch apart. Divide the final peice of dough into 12 smaller balls, then add two balls to each large bun to make the ears.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6 and then cover the buns with a damp tea towel and leave to prove again for between 30 minutes to 1 hour, until they have doubled in size.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until well risen and golden brown, then leave to cool on a wire rack.
- Lay the desiccated coconut onto a baking tray and bake in the oven for 5 minutes checking regularly to mix it around until it's all toasted and golden brown.
- Mix together the icing sugar and the milk until the mixture is smooth and has a ribbon consistency. It should coat the back of a spoon but should also easily drizzle off the spoon.
- Add the 1/4 tsp of cocoa powder to tint the icing brown
- Working one bun at a time, dip each cooled teddybear bun into the icing face down to coat well then lay back onto the baking tray and sprinkle your toasted coconut over the top.
- Immediately stick on the giant white chocolate button and eyes before the icing starts to set. Then stick on the chocolate chip for the nose and pipe on the mouth.
- Continue with all buns until they've all been decorated, then leave for 10 minutes before serving.
- These are delicious served a little warm and are best eaten fresh on the day. They wil last for 2 days if left in an air tight container.