“The most difficult part of this recipe is allowing the buns to cool slightly before you gobble them up!” says MasterChef SA 2014 runner up Siphokazi Mdlankomo in her book My Little Black Recipe Book, R235, (Metz Press)


  • 250ml warm milk
  • 10g instant yeast
  • 750ml cake flour
  • 60ml castor sugar
  • 5ml salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 125g butter, melted
  • 5ml vanilla extract


  • 80ml golden syrup or maple syrup
  • 50g brown sugar
  • 50g butter

Cinnamon butter:

  • 50g butter, softened
  • 125ml demerara sugar
  • 15ml ground cinnamon


  1. Place the milk and yeast in a bowl and mix to combine. Set aside in a warm spot until bubbles appear on the surface.
    2. Place flour, sugar, salt, eggs, butter, vanilla and yeast mixture in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on low speed for 2 minutes or until dough comes away from sides of the bowl.
    3. Place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with damp cloth. Leave to rise in a warm place until double in size.
    4. To make the glaze, place all the ingredients in a saucepan on low heat and cook for 5 minutes or until smooth.
    5. Pour into a lightly greased 20cm x 30cm baking tin and set aside.
    6. For the cinnamon butter, place all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Set aside.
    7. Roll the dough on a lightly floured clean work surface to make a rectangle. Spread the dough with the cinnamon butter, leaving a 1 cm border. Roll the dough tightly to enclose the filling.
    8. Preheat the oven to 200˚C.
    9. Cut the dough roll into 2cm pieces. Place the pieces in the prepared baking tin. Cover with damp cloth and set aside to rise until double in size.
    10. Cover the baking tin with tinfoil and bake for 15-20 minutes.
    11. Remove the foil, turn the oven to 160˚C and bake for a further 20 minutes or until golden brown.
    12. Allow to stand for 5 minutes before turning out to cool.

(Makes 12 buns)