Pan De Mei – Sweet Corn Buns


3/4 oz. baker’s yeast
1/2 cup white flour
1/2 cup melted butter
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup finely ground cornmeal
4 tbs. confectioner’s sugar
6 tbs. sugar
2 oz. dried sambuco seeds

How to make the Pan de mei:

Dissolve the yeast in 12 cups of warm water and stir in half the flour. Let rise for half an hour in a warm draft-free place till it has doubled in size. Punch down and mix in the remaining white flour, the cornmeal, sugar, butter, and eggs. The dough should be very soft; add more warm water, if necessary.

Put the dough in a pastry bag and squeeze out 2-3 oz. mounds onto a buttered cookie sheet. Do not put them too close together. Let them rise in a warm place for about half an hour. Melt the confectioner’s sugar in a little water, brush the liquid over the buns. Sprinkle with sambuco seeds. Bake the pan de mei in a 400°F oven for 15 min.

Sambuco seeds are gathered in spring and dried. Sometimes they are added to the dough itself, or they may also be omitted completely.

Regional recipe from Lombardy