|The cherry decided to flower in time to be our Easter tree|
I don't observe Lenten fasting. And I have my dance class on Tuesday evenings so I'm never up for special cooking on a Tuesday. But I was intrigued by the idea of semlor, so I decided to make them for Easter instead of hot cross buns.
I didn't follow a traditional recipe. I used Paul Hollywood's iced fingers dough, because it is my go-to enriched yeast dough recipe, using all skim milk instead of whole milk and water. I added the seeds from 12 cardamom pods, ground in a pestle and mortar as finely as I could manage before I got bored. After the first rise I halved the dough and froze one portion - we don't need that many buns - and shaped the other half into 4 round buns.
When they were baked and cooled, I cut off a lid and scooped out some of the crumb from both pieces. In a perfect world the almond cream filling would be made from scratch, but I decided that was a step too far. I mixed the scooped-out crumb with about 75g grated marzipan, and a small slosh of milk to make a paste.
I packed the almond filling back into the bottom halves of the buns, pressing it in well, then topped it with some lovely fresh raspberries (not traditional, but raspberries go so well with almonds). Then added a mound of freshly whipped double cream. I dusted them with icing sugar once I perched the lids on top of the cream.
I think I could have been a bit more heavy-handed with the cardamom - the flavour was very subtle. And I can see the marzipan nay-sayers (mother) screwing up their noses at the idea of it, but combined with the crumbs it just gave a nice almond flavour and sweetness which balanced the sweet but tangy raspberries and the bland richness of the unsweetened whipped cream.