The reason why Hot Cross Buns are one of those things on top of my Baking Bucket List, is because I was OBSESSED with the song as a child. (one a penny, 2 a penny…yes, that one.)
I sang it so much, that my little mind conjured up all these expectations of what hot cross buns would taste like. Well, they are really just spiced sweet buns with dried fruit, and a cross on top. Not the friendliest flavour profile for a child’s palate, but I love it now.
The spices really add character. And since it is Easter, I am crossing these off my bucket list.
I referenced so many recipes, and picked up some tips here and there, that I am going to call this one my own.
The list of ingredients look daunting to an amateur baker, but the list has really been lengthened by items for the cross and sugar glaze.
The husband who is not usually a fan of sweets and bread and usually has a tasting portion of whatever I bake, says it is as good as the store bought hot cross buns, and ate 2 (so far!). So these are definitely worth a shot.
400g Bread Flour
1 x 11g Sachet of Instant Yeast
75g Caster Sugar
1 tbsp Cinnamon Powder
1 tbsp Nutmeg Powder
3 Cardamom Pods
150ml Full Cream Milk
75g Mixed citrus peel
(You can use any combination of dried fruit you like)
For Egg Wash:
Splash of Milk
3 Tbsp Plain flour
2 Tbsp Caster Sugar
3 Tbsp Water
For Sugar Glaze:
1 Tbsp Caster Sugar
1 Tbsp Boiling water
1. Heat up butter, milk and cardamom pods over a low fire till the mixture simmers. Do not bring it to a boil. Allow the cardamom pods to steep and infuse the mixure with it. For a more intense flavour, crush the cardamom pods and sieve them out once the mixture has cooled to room temperature.
2. Beat the egg into the milk mixture once is has cooled to room temperature.
3. Place flour, sugar, yeast, cinammon powder and nutmeg powder into a bowl, and pour the milk mixture in.
4. Mix well and knead on a lightly oiled surface for about 10 minutes. Dough should be smooth and silky.
5. Place dough in a oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth and allow it to rise till it at least doubles in size. It should take about an hour.
6. Punch the air out of well proved dough, scatter raisins and mixed peel and knead them in for another 5minutes. Divide into 12-16 portions, depending on how big you want your hot cross buns to be, and shape them. I made 14 buns. Place each bun about an inch apart.
7. Let buns rise for another 45 minutes - 1 hour.
8. Brush surface of bun gently but thoroughly with egg wash.
9. Combine ingredients for the cross, mix well and pipe crosses on top of the bun.
10. Bake for about 20 minutes at 220 Celcius.
11. Brush sugar glaze over buns while they are still hot.
12. Enjoy warm with butter.