Moroccan sweet buns (Krachel)
These buns may look like an ordinary burger bun but they're far from that. They are lightly sweetened, very soft, and have an amazing anise seed flavor. If you're not a fan of anise seeds, you can replace them with sesame seeds or omit them all together. My son is not a fan of any baked good other than chocolate cup cakes and brownies, the kid wont even eat cinnamon roll but hand him one of these and he's good to go. I guess its the Moroccan in him. :)
4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon anise seeds (you can reduce the amount of seeds to your taste)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons orange blossom water
1/2 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup warm milk
2 eggs (room temperature)
1 tablespoon yeast
For the egg wash you will need 1 egg plus 1 tablespoon milk, well beated.
1 tablespoon lightly toasted sesame seeds
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
Dissolve your yeast in about 4 tablespoons of your warm milk and a pinch of sugar. Set aside.
Sift your flour and salt. In a large mixing bowl combine all of your wet ingredients along with the sugar and anise seeds and mix well, add 1 cup of the flour and mix with a fork, keep adding flour until a sticky dough is formed. If the dough is too sticky add a little more flour but remember the dough must be a little on the sticky side but still good enough to kneed. You may oil your hands and the counter to prevent the dough from sticking to your hands. Kneed for about 10 minutes or until very smooth. If you find it hard to kneed, leave it standing for about 3 minuted then come back to it and you will see it becomes easy to kneed after it sits for a few minutes. After the dough has been kneaded, transfer it to a large oiled bowl making sure the dough is oiled on all sides (to prevent from sticking) and cover with a towel. Allow the dough to rise for about 1 hour or until it has doubled in size. Once the dough has risen divide into 12 even portions and shape into smooth balls, place the balls 2 inches apart in a non stick baking/oiled baking sheet and lightly flatten the tops. Cover the buns with a towel and allow to rise for another hour or until doubled in size. Preheat your oven to 350*. Brush your buns with the egg wash and sprinkle with anise seeds and sugar. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the buns are medium golden, if by the end of 20 minutes the buns appear to be done but have not browned, place them under the broiler for a couple of minutes (make sure to stand by at all times when they are placed under the broiler).