Hot Cross Buns
Traditional spiced and sticky glazed Hot Cross Buns with pastry crosses. Hot Cross Buns are an Easter classic, but can be served at any time of the year!
Happy Easter Monday! I hope you’re all having a lovely Easter with your families?
Or, perhaps you’re ill in bed puking your guts up because you ate too much chocolate yesterday? I’m ashamed to admit that was [almost] me this morning! But if you can’t have chocolate on Easter, when can you?
Fortunately, although I felt nauseous, I wasn’t actually sick and it wore off in an hour or so.
Then I went back for more chocolate. *cough*
But Easter isn’t all about the chocolate (and the obvious), there’s the Hot Cross Buns too. And who would forget about these delicately spiced sweet bread jam packed with fruit.
I’m such a fan of hot cross buns that it used to disappoint me each time the shops stopped selling these buns after Easter. But now, the equilibrium has been restored – I can make them at home! *happy times*
This is my first ever time making bread, and again another first timer with yeast. I’m delighted with the results, they’re equally delicious, if not better than shop bought. I just lack patience but lesson learnt.
Why was I ever terrified of using yeast? Answers on a postcard please.
Hot Cross Buns Recipe
Prep Time: 1 hour 40 mins
Cook Time: 8-10 mins
Yield: 12 hot cross buns
FOR THE BUNS
- 450g strong bread flour
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp ground mixed spice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 50g unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 50g light brown sugar
- 7g (1 sachet) fast-acting yeast
- 1 egg
- 210ml milk
- 125g dried mixed fruit
FOR THE CROSSES
- 2 tbsp plain (all-purpose flour)
- 1 tbsp golden syrup (or corn syrup), gently heated, for glazing
- Sieve the flour, salt, ground mixed spice and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl, then rub in the butter using your fingertips. Try to keep the air in the mixture when rubbing the butter in. Make a well in the centre of the mixture, then add the sugar and the yeast.
- Beat the egg and add to the mixture with the tepid milk. Mix together to form a soft, pliable dough.
- Onto a lightly floured surface, turn the dough out and carefully work the mixed dried fruit into the dough until well combined. Lightly need for 5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
- Grease a large mixing bowl with butter or oil then shape the dough into a ball and place into the prepared bowl, cover with a clean tea (dish) towel and set aside in a warm place to prove for 1 hour.
- Turn out the proved dough again onto a lightly floured surface and knock back the dough. Re-shape into a bowl again and return it to the bowl, covering again for a 30 minutes to rise.
- Once risen, turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 12 equal pieces, rolling each into a ball, then slightly flatten into a bun shape. Cover the buns again with the tea towel and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Grease or oil a baking tray and transfer the buns to the tray then wrap the tray with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place for a further 40 minutes to rise. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 240℃/475℉/Gas Mark 8.
- For the topping, mix the plain (all-purpose) flour with 2 tbsp of cold water to form a smooth paste.
- When the buns have risen, remove the plastic wrap completely and either spoon or pipe the flour/water mixture making a cross on each bun.
- Bake the buns for 8-10 minutes, or until a pale golden brown.
- Glaze the buns as soon as they’re removed from the oven with the heated syrup, then set aside to cool on a wire rack.
- For my Hot Cross Buns, I decided to half Sultanas (sweet green raisins) and half currants for my dried fruit as I love the extra sweetness and fruitiness, but feel free to substitute as you wish. I’m not a fan of mixed peel neither.
- TIP: Problems rising? Boil the kettle and fill up a few cups or a large bowl with boiling water and place in a confined space like the oven or inside of a microwave – the heat and steam from the boiling water should be enough to get the yeast to start doing its thing!