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Sri Lankan Seeni Sambol Buns for #BreadBakers

Seeni Sambol is a Sri Lankan relish made with onions. (Seeni means sugar). This seeni sambol is a sweet, tangy and sour relish that is served with any savory meal or as a sandwich filling. So as the name suggests these buns are stuffed with seeni sambol or sweet onion relish.
Author: Pavani
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Prep Time: 45 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
3 hrs
Course: bread
Cuisine: sri lankan
Servings: 8 Servings


For the dough:

  • 1 cup All purpose flour
  • 1 cup Whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp Instant Yeast
  • tsp Egg Replacer powder or flaxseed meal whisked in 1½tbsp water, or ½ of a Large Egg
  • 2 tbsp Milk
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Unsalted butter, room temperature,
  • ½ cup Water

For the Onion Filling:

  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 1 Large Red onion, thinly sliced
  • 6~8 Curry leaves
  • ½ tsp Red chili flakes (adjust as per taste)
  • To taste Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • ½ tsp Tamarind paste
  • ½ tsp Ginger, finely grated
  • ½ tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp Non-dairy Milk (almond or Oat), for brushing the buns (or use 1 large egg yolk whisked with 1tbsp water)


Make the Dough:

  • In a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine all the dough ingredients along with ½ cup of water. Knead until smooth. Turn into a greased bowl, cover with a plastic wrap and let it rise until doubled in size, about 1½~2 hours.
  • Divide the dough into 8 balls and let rise for 30 minutes.

Make the Onion Filling:

  • Heat oil in a saute pan on medium-high heat, add the curry leaves and onions. Cook till the onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Then stir in the crushed red pepper flakes, salt, sugar, tamarind, ginger and cinnamon. Continue to cook till the onions are very soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Punch down each ball and press or roll out the dough into a 5" circle. Put a tablespoon of the onion filling in one quadrant of the circle, then fold the dough over like a half moon to cover the filling.
  • Lift the portion of the half moon that has no filling, and fold over once again. Pinch only the rounded edges of the dough together, then tuck them under and place the bun on the baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough balls.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. Brush the tops of the buns with milk (or the egg yolk mixture) and bake for 12~15 minutes or until the buns are lightly golden on top and bottom, be careful not to overbake or the dough will be dry. Serve warm or at room temperature.
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