Food Therapy from Tales of the Basil Queen

Photo: stevendepolo/Flickr

There’s something about pink icing that can make even the driest, blandest pastry a little special. In my childhood, I had so much FD & C Red No. 3 on my Dunkin’ Donuts that I might as well have been swallowing a (sugary, jimmie-covered) tumor.

The donuts were always horrible – even as a kid, I’d sometimes just eat the frosting and discard the rest – and despite being a New Englander born and raised, I haven’t stomached a DD pastry in years. To be fair, I can’t even remember the last time I had a donut – it all seems too sticky-sweet, too reminiscent of a toddler’s palate. It doesn’t seem to have a place in a quinoa- and kale- lover’s diet.

I changed my mind at about 10:30 this morning, when I saw this recipe by Adele at Tales of the Basil Queen. Finger buns (also known as London buns or candlegrease buns) are basically a lighter version of donuts – they’re an Austrailian treat made from a yeasted dough with sultanas and just a teensy bit of sugar and butter. Out of the oven, they are drizzled with some pink icing – a necessary step. “The icing is supposed to taste pink,” Adele writes. She uses food coloring; for an all-natural approach, you could use beets.

These buns are, in Adele’s words, “pleasantly soft and agreeably sticky, and they are much beloved by schoolchildren, if not so much by adults.” This adult, however, thinks they might be a perfect afternoon snack. If your yeast fails you, if you cook for too long, hey – at least you’ll get a bowl of pink frosting out of it.

(Incidentally, Tales of the Basil Queen happens to be a captivating and utterly absorbing local blog. Her great post accompanying this recipe is typical of the quality you can expect. Check it out!)

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