Monthly Recipe: Melon Pan (メロンパン)

Those of you who know Japan will surely know melon pan! Melon pan, available in all convenience stores across Japan, is a kind of sweet bread bun. Melon pan is made from an enriched dough covered in a thin layer of crisp cookie dough… and it’s gooooood! They’re called ‘melon pan’ not because of a melon flavour, but because they are supposed to resemble cantaloupe melons in appearance. Traditional melon pan is just a bread bun, but you can also buy flavoured melon pan and melon pan filled with fillings such as cream, chocolate or red beans.

Melon pan

The best melon pan in the world – available from Asakusa in Tokyo, near Senso-ji

I never dreamed I could make my own melon pan, but then I came across this recipe on the Sushi Sushi website: How to Make Melon Pan. They made it sound easy enough, so I thought I’d give it a go! On your marks, get set… BAKE!

Melon Pan (メロンパン)

Ingredients for Bread Dough

  • 1 3/4 cups (230g) self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp dehydrated milk powder
  • 1 tsp dried yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) cool water
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 25g softened butter

Ingredients for Cookie Dough

  • 1 1/3 cups (185g) self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 60g softened butter
  • 1/3 cup (75g) caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • caster sugar for dusting

Cooking: Melon Pan

Method

First make the bread dough. Place the powdered milk, flour, yeast and salt in a bowl and whisk together.

Cooking: Melon Pan

In a separate bowl, beat together the egg and water until smooth.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Add the wet mix to the dry ingredients, and combine the ingredients into a dough.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Knead until the dough is moderately firm. Knead the tablespoon of sugar into the dough. Knead well to ensure even distribution.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Knead the softened butter into the dough. Knead well to combine. This is messy work!

Cooking: Melon Pan

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with clingfilm. Place somewhere warm, or set your oven to about 30/40 C and place the dough bowl inside and leave to rise. It should take one hour to rise by about half. (I don’t think my dough rose enough, but I left it more than an hour.)

Cooking: Melon Pan

Whilst the dough is rising, make the cookie dough. Mix together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Add the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth and lump free.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Add the flour, baking powder and salt to the butter mix then stir until just combined as a dough.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Roll the dough into a cylinder, wrap in cling film and place in the fridge for 20 mins.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Once the bread dough has risen, remove from the bowl, flatten and divide into buns. These can be as big or as small as you wish! (I made 8 and they were a decent size.)

Cooking: Melon Pan

Take the cookie dough cylinder from the fridge and slice into the same number of portions.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Now flatten a piece of cookie dough to about 1/4 inch of thickness. Place a bun of bread dough in the centre. Wrap the cookie dough around the bun and ensure there is no openings. Do this to every bun, then roll in sugar.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Take a knife and make the traditional criss-cross pattern across the dough lightly.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Place the melon pan on a tray, cover with cling film and leave to rise again. Meanwhile you can heat the oven to 180 C.

Cooking: Melon Pan

When risen slightly, bake the melon pan for 15-20 mins until golden brown.

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

There you have it – home-made melon pan! They’re not as good as the real thing, and I think they could do without the vanilla, but they’re still pretty yummy! I’m feeling quite proud of my first attempt at bread making! I think Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood would be proud!

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

Cooking: Melon Pan

☆★☆

I’ll be back in February with a new recipe! If you have any suggestions, or perhaps you would like me to try one of your recipes from a book or website, please leave a comment below or get in touch! All the recipes I try on this blog have some connection to Japan and, because I don’t eat meat, they need to be vegetarian or pescetarian. I’m particularly interested in helping to promote Japanese recipe books, so do let me know if you have one I might like!

One thought on “Monthly Recipe: Melon Pan (メロンパン)

  1. I love to add powdered strawberries to the cookie dough, it turns it pink and gives it a fruity flavour that goes well with the bread in general, it’s delicious! :3

    Like

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