These flaky scallion rolls are a delicious Asian-fusion bread that combines flaky laminated pastry with soft fluffy milk bread. They’re filled with sriracha mayo and cheddar cheese and topped with toasted sesame seeds for the ultimate savory flavor combination!
This fusion recipe combines different elements of my favorite dishes, from flaky, flavorful scallion pancakes to soft, fluffy milk bread to crispy, layered croissants. You’ll find a lot of different techniques and flavors that have been melded together to create these tasty scallion rolls.
When you bite into these rolls, you’re met with the fragrant crunch of pastry that melts away to soft, fluffy layers of milk bread. Perfect on their own or paired with a bowl of noodle soup!
How to get flaky pastry layers
Scallion pancakes are known for their flaky, crisp texture and I wanted to bring that element into these pastries. The recipe uses a “rough puff” pastry lamination technique.
What is pastry lamination?
Pastry lamination is a technique used to create the flaky layers that pastries such as croissants, Danishes, and puff pastries are known for. It involves rolling out dough, then adding a layer of fat (such as butter or shortening), then folding and rolling the dough again. This process is repeated several times to create multiple layers of dough and fat. When the fat melts in the oven, the steam helps puff up the pastry and create a signature texture.
For this recipe, we use a “rough puff” technique, which involves laminating in small pieces of butter rather than an entire sheet. This technique is easier and more forgiving than a “full puff” lamination.
Tips for pastry lamination
Pastry lamination can be tricky if you’ve never done it before. This recipe is a great introduction though and fairly forgiving! Here are some tips to follow to help you get flaky layers:
- Partially develop the gluten when initially making the dough. Normally in bread recipes, you want to knead until the dough forms a window pane and the gluten is fully developed. For this dough, you only want to knead until just smooth. During the lamination process, gluten will continue to develop. If you overknead at the beginning, the dough can become harder to roll out later.
- Make sure your work area is cold. I keep my kitchen around 70F because butter starts melting above 75F. You want to make sure the surface you’re working on is cold as well. My countertop will sometimes heat up from sunlight hitting it or because I’m running the dishwasher, and this interferes with lamination!
- Freeze the dough for 15 – 20 minutes before starting lamination. This ensures that the dough is colder than the butter, which helps prevent butter breakage and melting.
- Grate your butter into small pieces. This helps the butter become evenly distributed among the dough. If you use big chunks of butter, it’s harder to laminate evenly.
- Chill the dough for 20 – 30 minutes between each turn. This does 2 things – it keeps the dough cool and prevents the butter from melting, and also gives the gluten in the dough a chance to relax. If you don’t let the gluten relax, the dough will resist being rolled out.
- Be patient with proofing. The additional butter can make proofing slower. You’ll know when the rolls have finished proofing when they become puffy and you can see the layers starting to separate. I like to put my rolls in the oven with a tray of hot water (heated to 150 – 160F) to help speed up the process. Make sure the proofing temperature does not exceed 75F or else the butter will start to melt!
How to get super soft, fluffy bread
The fluffiness of this recipe comes from using a soft, yeasted milk bread dough. The recipe adapts my Japanese milk bread by hand. It uses less liquid so that the dough is stiffer and easier to handle when laminating.
Unlike a traditional pastry recipe, the milk bread dough has tangzhong and egg to give it a fluffier, lighter texture.
Filling the scallion pastry rolls
To make sure that every bit of the pastry is filled with scallion flavor, each lamination adds a layer of chopped scallions. We then roll the dough with more chopped scallions, cheddar, and sriracha mayo. During baking, the sriracha mayo melts into the dough, infusing it with flavor and making the filling extra soft.
Feel free to adapt the filling to any flavors that you would like! Any savory filling would pair well with the scallion – I know I’ll be experimenting with flavors such as miso, gochujang, and kimchi!
Other savory Asian bread and pastry recipes to try:
Everytime I make these rolls, they are devoured immediately!If you make this recipe, please let me know! I always love to see what my readers are baking. You can comment below or tag me on Instagram @halicopteraway.
Flaky croissant-style scallion pastry rolls
- Rolling Pin
- Mixing bowl
- 9 x 9 inch baking pan
- 3 tbsp (23g) all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (60g) water
- 1/4 cup (60g) milk
- 1/4 cup (60g) milk, cold
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tsp (7g) instant or active dry yeast
- 2 1/2 cups (325g) all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 egg
- 4 tbsp (60g) unsalted butter, room temperature
Butter for laminating
- 12 tbsp (170g) unsalted butter, cold
- 1 bunch scallions, chopped
- 2 tbsp mayo
- 1 tbsp sriracha
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- milk for brushing
- white sesame seeds (optional)
- In small skillet or pot, whisk together flour, milk, and water until smooth. Bring to simmer over medium-low heat, whisking frequently, until mixture has thickened but is still pourable. It should take 5 – 10 minutes. Your whisk should leave a mark when dragged along the bottom of the pan.
- Pour into a bowl and cover surface with plastic wrap to prevent a film from forming, and allow to cool to room temperature.
Make the dough
- In a large measuring cup, mix together the cold milk, sugar, and yeast. Set aside.
- In the bowl of stand mixer, mix together the all purpose flour and salt. Create a well in the middle and add the milk, sugar, and yeast mixture. Add the tangzhong and egg as well. Using a dough hook attachment, mix together on low speed.
- After the dough has just come together, add the softened butter in 4 pieces while the stand mixer is running, letting each piece incorporate into the dough before adding the next.
- Stop mixing when the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. Form into a ball, cover, and let rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour until doubled in size.
- After the dough has doubled in size, place in the fridge for at least 1 hour to chill, and up to overnight.
Prepare the butter
- Grate the cold butter into a bowl. Place the bowl in the fridge while you wait for the dough to chill.
Laminate the dough
- Place the dough in the freezer for 20 minutes before you start laminating
- Roll the dough out into a 16 inch x 8 inch rectangle on a floured countertop. Place the grated butter in the middle of the dough rectangle in an 8 inch by 8 inch square, spreading it out into an even layer.
- Enclose the butter – fold the top third of the dough down until the top edge is in the center of the butter. Fold the bottom third of the dough up until the bottom edge meets the top edge. Press the edges together the seal the butter in the dough.
- Turn 90 degrees so that the dough seam is perpendicular to you. Roll out again into a 16 inch x 8 inch rectangle. Sprinkle the surface of the dough with chopped scallions. Gently roll the rolling pin over the dough to press the scallions in.
- Do your first book fold – fold the top edge and bottom edges of the dough so that they meet in the middle. Then, fold along the seam like you're closing a book. The dough should have 4 layers. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 20 – 30 minutes.
- Remove from the fridge and roll out into a 16 inch by 8 inch rectangle. Sprinkle the surface of the dough with chopped scallions. Do your second book fold following the instructions in the above step. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 20 – 30 minutes.
Make the filling
- In a small bowl, mix together the softened butter, mayo, sriracha, brown sugar, and salt. Set aside
Shape & bake the rolls
- Grease a baking pan and set aside
- Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out into a 12 inch by 15 inch rectangle. Spread the surface with the filling and sprinkle with chopped scallions and cheddar cheese.
- Roll up the dough so that the final roll is 12 inches long. Divide into 9 even slices. Place each slice in the greased baking pan
- Cover and let rise for 1 – 2 hours until puffy and doubled in size. You should see the layers start to separate. Towards the end of the rise, preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Brush the top of the rolls with milk and sprinkle with sesame seeds
- Place in the middle rack and bake for 25 – 30 minutes until a deep golden brown on top
- Remove from the oven and enjoy warm!
- These rolls are best enjoyed fresh. If eating them on the second day, place in the oven for 5 minutes at 350F to warm them back up