Pumpkin Rolls

These little rolls not only look like pumpkins, but they have pumpkin purée in the dough, which makes them perfect for using up the flesh of a scooped-out pumpkin lantern. Just peel and deseed the pumpkin (or squash) flesh, cut it into chunks and steam it until tender. Leave it to cool and then blend until smooth

Serves: 12–14
Difficulty: Needs skill
Hands-On Time: 40 mins, plus rising
Baking Time: 25 mins
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Step 1
Tip the flour into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Add the yeast, sugar, salt and turmeric and mix to combine.

Step 2
Warm the milk until lukewarm and add it to the bowl with the pumpkin purée and olive oil. Mix on low speed until combined, then increase the speed slightly and knead for a further 5 minutes, until the dough is smooth and cleanly leaves the side of the bowl.

Step 3
Shape the dough into a neat ball. Lightly oil a mixing bowl and place the dough ball inside. Cover and leave the dough in a draught free place at room temperature for about 1 hour, until doubled in size.

Step 4
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it lightly for 20 seconds. Divide the dough into 12–14 portions – it doesn’t matter if they’re not exactly the same size. Shape each dough portion into a tight, smooth and neat ball.

Step 5
Lay a length of kitchen string on the work surface. Place one dough ball in the middle of the string, then bring each end up and cross them over the dough ball as if wrapping a parcel. Without tightening the string around the dough (you don’t want the string to cut into it), carefully turn the dough ball over. Repeat this wrapping with the string so that it marks out 8 sections of the dough ball. Tie the string in a knot to secure it and place the ball on a lined baking tray with the knot underneath. Repeat with the remaining dough balls. Cover the balls loosely and leave them to prove at room temperature for about 45 minutes, until nearly doubled in size.

Step 6
Meanwhile, beat the egg with the 1 tablespoon of milk and heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/Gas 4.

Step 7
Carefully brush the rolls with egg wash and bake them for 25 minutes, until they are risen and deep golden brown. Leave to cool for 2–3 minutes, then carefully snip off the string. Press a piece of walnut into the top of each pumpkin for a stalk. Leave to cool.