Miso caramel and tahini babka VG

TL/DR: nom nom please make. nom. 

Miso caramel and tahini babka - pillowy dough wrapped with up with homemade miso caramel and runny tahini. Vegan. Sculpted Buns.

I have been doing a lot of thinking trying to diversify flavours; straying away from the more traditional ingredients. Sweet and salty does it for me, I feel the saltiness draws out a more complex sweetness of a dish and through adding an element of umani creates a well-rounded and multi-dimensional taste. Caramel is quite a typical and "normal" flavour now, especially salted caramel. Rather than adding salt, white miso paste creates the most beautiful salty hum. Along with the miso caramel, the creamy and slightly bitter tahini creates a marriage in heaven of flavours and textures; cashew butter could also be used but it is definitely on the expensive side. Through loosening the caramel with soy milk rather than cream, the tahini takes on the role of a smooth and velvety operator. Drizzling the tahini onto the rolled dough topped with caramel adds happy little nuggets of moreish-ness along with the pillowy bread dough.

Miso caramel and tahini babka - pillowy dough wrapped with up with homemade miso caramel and runny tahini. Vegan. Sculpted Buns.

For the miso caramel and filling 
  • 50g vegan butter
  • 100g golden caster sugar 
  • 30g golden syrup 
  • 1 tsp. barley malt extract - not a lot but makes a bit difference
  • 50ml soy milk 
  • 2 tsp. white miso paste
  • tahini 
  • sesame seeds
For the dough 
  • 300g strong white flour 
  • 7g salt 
  • 40g golden caster sugar 
  • 190ml warm water 
  • 7g (1 sachet) instant yeast

Make the dough first; mix together the flour, salt and sugar together. Mix together the water and yeast and let it bloom for a few minutes until there are little blooms of activity. Add this to the dry ingredients and knead for 10 minutes until silky and stretchy. I used my mixture but with a little bit of elbow grease, hand-kneading will yield beautiful results.

Grease the bowl and pop in the dough, cover with a damp tea towel and let the dough prove until doubled in size, about 1.5 hours.  Whilst the dough is rising, make the miso caramel.

In a pan, melt together the butter, sugar, golden syrup and barley malt syrup, stirring occasionally. Keep on a medium heat and watch the colour until it changes from a light golden to a deeper brown colour. Once at this stage, remove of the heat, pour in the milk and whilst until the bubbling subsides. Add the miso, pour into a bowl and leave to cool completely in the fridge.

Once the dough is double in size, roll out to a large rectangle, about 1.5cm tall. Spread over the cooled caramel and drizzle over a generous amount of tahini and sprinkle over some sesame seeds. Roll up the dough into a spiral and slice vertically down the middle to create two strands. Twist these together and pop into a 900g LINED loaf tin. Sprinkle with a few more seeds if you fancy.  

Cover and leave to prove for 40 minutes. Preheat the oven to 180c.

Bake for 30-30 minutes until the bread is golden and the filling is bubbling. Leave to cool for a good hour, dust with icing sugar and devour.