Monday, January 11, 2021

Meyer Lemon Custard-Filled Matcha Turtles #BreadBakers

BreadBakers#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the Bread Bakers home page

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. This month Stacy of Food Lust People Love is hosting and she wrote: "Your bread can be large, as in one big animal, or small - animal-shaped rolls. Use your imagination! Points for flavor and shape!"

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send an email with your blog URL to Stacy at

Here's the animal-shaped bread basket from the #BreadBakers...

Meyer Lemon Custard-Filled Matcha Turtles 

I was inspired to make a green dough with matcha green tea powder...and I had lemons from my parents' tree, so I made a lemon custard. It was delicious!

Ingredients makes 6 turtle rolls

  • 13 grams dried/active dry yeast 
  • 250 milliliters whole milk, warmed to steaming but not boiling
  • 100 grams butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 40 grams organic granulated sugar
  • 450 grams flour + more for kneading
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon matcha green tea powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 egg, beaten

Vanilla-Meyer Lemon Cream
  • 500 milliliters whole milk
  • 1 vanilla pod, sliced lengthwise with seeds scraped
  • 3 eggs
  • 100 grams organic granulated sugar
  • 30 grams corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest (from an organic lemon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract

Baking and Topping
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup lightly packed organic brown sugar
  • 12 cloves for the eyes


Vanilla-Meyer Lemon Cream
Place the milk and the vanilla bean and scraped seeds in a medium sauce pan and let stand for 20 minutes. Then scald the milk and let the vanilla steep in the milk for 10 minutes. In the meantime, in mixing bowl, blend the sugar and egg until the mixture becomes fluffy and pale. Add the corn starch and whisk to combine.

Slowly pour the warmed milk into the egg mixture, whisking as you pour.  Whisk in the lemon extract. Place the saucepan back on the stove and bring to a boil. Whisking vigorously the whole time.  Once the mixture has thickened and just started to boil, remove from the heat. Keep whisking to keep it smooth. Fold in the lemon zest.

Spread the pastry cream into a dish and cover with plastic wrap, touching the top to keep the cream from developing a film.  Refrigerate until cool.

Pour warm milk into a large mixing bowl, stir in sugar, and sprinkle yeast over the top. Let bloom for 10 to 15 minutes. It should be foamy and frothy. Add in the butter and egg. Whisk to combine.

Add in the flour, baking powder, matcha green tea powder, and salt. Knead until a scraggy dough forms. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for 30 to 40 minutes. It should be doubled in size.

Dust a workspace with flour and turn out the dough. Knead the dough, dusting to prevent sticking if needed. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough to a rectangle, approximately 12" x 16". Cut the dough into 8 rectangles. Six become the bodies and the other two are used to form balls for the heads and legs.

On each of the six body rectangles, add a generous dollop of pastry cream. Gather the corners together on top to form a sort of purse shape. Press the seams together to ensure the cream stays inside the bun and won’t leak out during baking.

When bun is completely closed, invert it, and place it on parchment paper or silicone mat-lined baking sheet, seam side down. Press a large dough ball to form the head and four smaller dough balls to form the legs.

Mix the ingredients together in a bowl until a nice crumble forms.

Brush the buns with beaten egg and sprinkle the topping over the turtles. Press two cloves into the turtle head for the eyes. Let the buns rest and rise for 20 to 25 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 395 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the buns in the oven. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes on the sheet before serving.

And that's a wrap for our January edition of  #BreadBakers. We'll be back next month with Karen of  Karen's Kitchen Stories leading our event about pizza. Stay tuned!


  1. Lovely turtles Camilla. The filling sounds heavenly. Loved the chocolate topping!

  2. The delicious topping makes these turtles even more adorable!

  3. I'm impressed that you baked the custard inside the little turtles, Camilla! I had assumed that it was going to be inserted afterwards, doughnut or cream buns style. Great job!

    1. I had never thought to do that until I learned how to make Fastelavnsboller from a Danish friend. I honestly didn't think it would work. But it does. Thanks for hosting.

  4. These turtles are too cute and the meyer lemon filling is a great idea.

    1. Thanks, Wendy. I just love raiding my parents' tree for fresh lemons!

  5. Oh yum - I can only imagine how tasty these were with that pastry cream filling! They're adorable!

  6. These are not only cute but also yummy love this.

  7. That custard filling sounds delicious. Your turtles are sooooo cute! I love the little clove eyes. I bet these were a huge hit.

  8. Matcha and lemon custrad filling are my daughter's faves. We would love to try these. It is a great idea to bake with the custard filling and they have turned out perfect and delicious.

  9. Absolutely love your lemon filling! And the brown sugar topping too. I would totally make these. Lemon anything is a win for me.

  10. This is definitely a treat with custard, chocolate topping and that turtle shaped bread...A hit with the kids