Buchteln – Sweet Austrian Yeast Buns

March 16, 2015
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Buchteln yeast buns

Buchteln or Wuchteln – you will hear both expressions in Austria – are a relatively unknown treasure. They are pull-apart style yeasted sweet rolls, filled with apricot jam. The buns are not overly sweet, since the recipe only calls for 3 tablespoons of sugar. The dough itself is very fluffy and airy, surrounded by a crispy, nicely browned crust, which will get soft when cooled. You will often see them served, sitting in a pool of vanilla sauce, but at my parents home they were usually served without.

I grew up eating a lot of Buchteln (singular is Buchtel) because my sisters and I where picky eaters. Especially my two sisters, of course ;-). But no one ever said no to this treat. So my mum and my granny made them at least every other week.

Austrian Buchteln, filled yeast buns

Wuchteln are usually served for dessert, but my family, and a lot of other Austrians do so too, eat them for main course as well. In Austria, it is quite a habit to eat sweet dishes for main course once in a while – like Palatschinken (Austrian Crepes), Kaiserschmarrn, Stewed elderberries with baked semolina or Blueberry Nocken.

The recipe itself is pretty straightforward. The only tricky part is filling the buns.  If the filling (usually apricot jam) gets on the edges, it is almost impossible to seal them as the dough will stop sticking. Even though I made Buchteln a couple of times myself, there are usually one or two that make me swear. It’s one of these nearly-throw-the-dough-against-kitchen-walls kind of situations. For moods like that, there is a troubleshooting section at the end of the recipe part ;-)

So let’s have some fun!

Buchteln shaping

Bottom left: Fold the edges of each piece into the middle a couple of times.
Bottom center: Flatten each piece to a circle . Put 1 teaspoon of apricot jam in the center of the circle.
Bottom right: Wrap the dough around the filling, pinching and sealing it tightly.

First you have to make a yeast dough and let it rise until doubled in volume (about 1 hour). Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 12 equal parts. Fold the edges of each piece into the middle a couple of times (bottom left), so you will get a nice ball with a smooth surface on the bottom side.

Flatten it to a circle with a diameter of 3 to 3 ½ inch. Put 1 teaspoon of apricot jam (not more) in the center of the circle (bottom center). Wrap the dough around the filling, pinching and sealing it tightly (bottom right). If you use too much filling, it’s difficult to seal them. For more troubleshooting, see note in the recipe part.

Put every Buchtel with the sealed side down onto a lightly floured surface until you have filled all of them (balls on the top right side in the picture above).

Buchteln baking

Put about 2 ½ tablespoons melted butter (you might need a little more) in a small bowl. Brush a baking pan (I used an oval 11 x 7 inch ceramic pan) with melted butter, just until coated. Put every Buchtel in the bowl with the melted butter, turn it around until well coated.

Update 6/19/2014: It is easier not to turn the Buchteln around in the melted butter. Just place them in the buttered pan and thoroughly brush each Buchtel with melted butter.

Buchteln in pan

Place the Buchteln, coated with butter, in your baking pan. You can do this tightly packed (traditional way) or give them a little space, but not too much (as I do). 

Buchteln Austrian yeast rolls

Let them proof for a second time for about 20-30 minutes at warm room temperature until puffy.

Oven baked Austrian Buchteln

Bake them at 375 °F in the preheated oven (center rack) for about 25 minutes (minimum 20 minutes). When they are golden-brown in color, take them out of the oven.

Buchteln - Sweet Yeast Buns

Let the Buchteln cool for 5-10 minutes and serve them dusted with confectioner’s sugar.

Austrian Buchteln

Enjoy!

Update: This recipe was featured in The Boston Globe. Woohoo! Just in case you are interested…

The Boston Globe, 25 October 2015.

The Boston Globe, 25 October 2015.

 

Buchteln – Sweet Austrian Yeast Buns

Yield: 12 Buchteln (for an oval 11 x 7 inch pan or sth. similar)

Buchteln – Sweet Austrian Yeast Buns

Ingredients

  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons (150 ml) warm milk
  • 1 ½ teaspoons (5 g) active dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons (40 g) sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 5 ½ tablespoons (77g) melted butter
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 325 g (about 2 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
    -----------------------------------
  • About 5 tablespoons apricot jam with fine texture (no chunks)
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter for the pan
  • Confectioners sugar for dusting

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk and set it aside for 10 minutes for the yeast to dissolve and activate.
  2. Stir in sugar, egg, melted (lightly cooled) butter, vanilla and salt with a hand whisk.
  3. Stir in about 1 ½ cups (200 g) of the flour to get a thick batter and stir vigorously with the whisk until no lumps remain. Time to change your tools: Get rid of the whisk an use a sturdy (wooden) cooking spoon to gradually stir in the rest of the flour.
  4. When all ingredients come together fold the edges into the center for a couple of minutes. Keep your dough in the mixing bowl for that. The dough will be sticky, but refrain from adding more flour. It helps if you oil your clean hands before you knead a sticky dough. Knead until smooth, about 5 minutes.
  5. Let the dough rise, covered at warm room temperature until doubled in volume (about 3/4 to 1 hour).
  6. Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 12 equal parts. Keep pieces you don’t need right away covered.
  7. Fold the edges of each piece into the middle a couple of times so you will get a nice ball with a smooth surface on the bottom side. Flatten each ball with your palm to a circle with a diameter of 3 to 3 ½ inch, keeping the center slightly thicker than the edges. Usually this part works without using any additional flour. If the dough keeps sticking to your countertop, add some.
  8. Put 1 teaspoon of apricot jam (not more) in the center of every circle. Wrap the dough around the filling, pinching and sealing it tightly. Round the buns again, creating a bit of surface tension. If you use too much filling, it’s difficult to seal them. Also avoid getting jam onto your edges, because this way it is almost impossible to seal them (see more troubleshooting in the note).
  9. Put every Buchtel with the sealed side down onto a lightly floured surface until you have finished filling all of them.
  10. Put about 2 ½ tablespoons melted butter (you might need a little more) in a small bowl. Brush a baking pan (I used an oval 11 x 7 inch ceramic pan) with melted butter, just until coated. Put every Buchtel in the bowl with the melted butter, turn it around until well coated. [Update 6/19/2015: Instead of turning the buns around in the bowl with melted butter it is easier to brush each bun when you've placed them in the pan.]
  11. Place the Buchteln, coated with butter, in your baking pan. You can do this tightly packed (traditional way) or give them a little, but not too much space. They will still rise during the second proofing and baking. If you feel there are too many of them, you can place the remaining in a lined muffin tin.
  12. Let them proof a second time for about 20-30 minutes at warm room temperature until puffy. It is best to cover the whole pan with a lid or cling wrap in this step. If you have a rather shallow pan, don’t cover the Buchteln, since they will stick to the plastic wrap. If you couldn’t cover them and they seem kind of dry before baking, you can brush them another time with melted butter.
  13. Bake them at 375 °F in the preheated oven (center) for about 25 minutes (minimum 20 minutes). When they are golden-brown in color, take them out of the oven.
  14. Let the Buchteln cool for 5-10 minutes and serve them dusted with confectioner’s sugar. Enjoy!

Notes

Troubleshooting: Filling the Buchteln is the trickiest part. If you get jam near your edges, remove it with a paper towel BEFORE you try to seal them. If the jam oozes out while pinching, clean your jammy hands and dough, and try to pinch it again. If this doesn’t work and you are close to throwing the whole Buchtel away, pinch off some dough of another unworked piece, flatten it and generously put this layer of dough atop the problematic area. Try to seal it tightly, coat it in butter and place it, seam side down, in the pan. If I have one of those problematic Buchteln, and if the pan is pretty packed anyway, I sometimes bake it in a paper lined muffin tin, seam side down.

http://www.lilvienna.com/buchteln-sweet-austrian-yeast-buns/

Did you follow this recipe? You could share your result here. All you need to do is take a picture with your smartphone and send it to enjoy@lilvienna.com

Buchteln from userUser the everyday kitchen: "I have never had Austrian Buchteln before, so this was my first attempt. They turned out very well!".

Brot von Userin nachgekochtRegine: "I made them. So so delicious!!!!!! I used my Kitchenaid stand alone mixer to knead dough until it reached the windowpane test. I placed all 12 rolls in a 12 by 7 baking dish. Thanks for such wonderful rolls. Also, I did not have active dried yeast so I used instant. By the way, I inadvertently used entire sachet of about 2 1/4 tsp although less can be used if instant is used to replace active dry yeast, but my rolls still came out beautifully." [Click to enlarge picture.]
Buchteln – Sweet Austrian Yeast Buns was last modified: June 23rd, 2017 by Ursula

26 thoughts on “Buchteln – Sweet Austrian Yeast Buns

  1. Dulcistella

    wow, great! A friend of mine (Italian) made one of these, but savory, when I was in Innsbruck… he called it “a Danube”, like the river :-D it looked awesome! And yours too :-)

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Thanks Dulcistella! I didn’t know that it is called Danube ;-) But now I do, thanks! But whatever name they may have, I can’t say “no” to them.

      Reply
  2. Kelsey M

    My mom and I can up lots of apricot and peach jam over the summer and are always looking for new ways to use it. I love baking yeast breads so this is the perfect recipe- can’t wait to try it!

    -Kelsey

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      It’s so great that your grandfather made something similar and that he is cooking at all! I honestly don’t know any Austrian grandfather who likes to cook!

      Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Thanks Kiran,
      You are so right. That’s why I knead everything by hand … and because I don’t have a machine ;-)

      Reply
  3. Jessica

    If I want to make these ahead of time, do you think I could get all the way to the filled roll stage and freeze/refrigerate them until ready to use? If I leave them at room temp long enough to proof before baking? Beautiful recipe – thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hi Jessica,
      Hm. Honestly, I’ve never made them ahead, but I know for sure that filling them and letting them rest in the fridge for a longer time wouldn’t work (over-proofed). It could work overnight, because the dough proofs more slowly in the fridge than at room temperature. I guess I have to try it the next time – the freezer and the fridge variation ;-) Sorry for not being more helpful….

      Reply
  4. Jessica Y

    OMG!! I visited Austria once in high school, and this literally brought back all those great memories of touring Vienna with friends. What a great recipe …. going to continue the trip down memory lane while at work and go through the Austrian recipes here :)

    Reply
  5. Patrick

    Palacsinta are actually Hungarian crepes (not Austrian). I’m sure that the mutual heritage of Austria-Hungary is what brought them over.

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hey Patrick, that’s probably right ;-) – and since crepes are so delicoious, I guess every country has its own version ;-)

      Reply
  6. Rose Gindl

    Hi Ursula:
    I stumbled upon your website by accident. It looks like we have very similar tastes in food and background. I too have an Austrian background and my mother made all your recipes and many others. As well, my father started out as a baker – he could make the best Milchbrot ever. I look forward to reading more on your blog. I also started a blog about “this and that” and have included my own and my mother’s recipes. Have a browse when you get the chance. I really like your photos. Mine are a little lacking. All the best to you and your husband.
    My blog is: everythingisalwaysrosie.blogspot.com

    Reply
  7. Regine

    I made them. So so delicious!!!!!! I used my Kitchenaid stand alone mixer to knead dough until it reached the windowpane test. I placed all 12 rolls in a 12 by 7 baking dish. Thanks for such wonderful rolls. Also, I did not have active dried yeast so I used instant. By the way, I inadvertently used entire sachet of about 2 1/4 tsp although less can be used if instant is used to replace active dry yeast, but my rolls still came out beautifully.

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hi Regine! So great to hear that the Buchteln came out nice!!! I love them too ;-)) Thanks for your lovely comment, Ursula

      Reply
  8. Melanie Hassan

    Hi Ursula, My grandmother used to make these and called them ‘Buhtle!’ She was Croatian so I guess it must have been the Austro-Hungarian influence. I had a go today, following your recipe and they came out great. Thank you. Kind regards.

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hi Melanie,
      Thanks so much for trying the recipe. So happy that you like them ;-) Austria and its neighbor countries often have very similar or even the same recipes – well, it was all one country once, so no wonder. So cool that your Croatian grandmother used to make them as well.

      Reply
  9. Sarah Krippner

    To help with the jam, I loosely place plastic foil on top of an ice cube tray (hard to find in Austria) and freeze little roundish blobs of jam before mixing the dough. So much easier especially with a soft jam.

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hi Sarah! What a great tip. This reminds me of making fruit filled dumplings, where a lot of people in Austria put a cube of sugar into half a (frozen) plum or apricot. I’ll definitely try it the next time.

      Reply
  10. Elen

    I keep coming back to this recipe – sooo good! We have them as ‘breakfast dessert’ on special occasions. They always make happy memories :-)

    Have you ever tried them with a different jam? I was thinking morello cherry next time… or various jams for a lucky dip…

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Hi Elen,

      Thanks so much for trying the recipe. That really makes me happy ☺ I love the lucky dip idea ☺ So far I’ve made them with apricot jam, red currant jam, rasperry jam, and powidl (plum butter) but really, anything you like works fine cherry sounds delish!!!!

      Reply

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