Caoimhe: Oooh, what are you making Mam? Me: Hot Cross Buns
Caoimhe singing: Hot cross buns, hot cross buns, one a penny, two a penny, hot cross buns!
Guess what song’s stuck in my head today?
I have bought quite a few hot cross buns over the years, however I have never made any, until now! It’s shameful really when I consider the amount of bread I bake, so from now on, I vow never to buy hot cross buns again!
I knew I had seen a recipe in one of my many cookbooks, I just couldn’t remember which one! Six books later I found it, the recipe I wanted is in Tana Ramsay’s, I Love to Bake!
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
450g Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1.5 tsp Mixed Spice
50g Butter, cut into small cubes, plus extra for greasing
Finely grated zest of two oranges
80g dried Cranberries (I used Sultanas)
100ml warm Milk
1 large Egg, beaten. (Plus a second one beaten to attach the crosses and glaze)
100g Short-crust pastry (ready made is fine & convenient too!)
for the glaze
1 tbsp hot water
1 tbsp smooth orange marmalade (I used honey)
1 tbsp soft dark brown sugar (I used coconut sugar)
- Put the warm water in a mixing bowl, add the yeast, stir together and leave aside for 30 minutes, until it starts to froth.
- Meanwhile, place the flour, cinnamon & mixed spice in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter cubes, then, using your fingertips, rub the butter in until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the centre and tip in the yeast mixture. Add the orange zest and sultanas, and mix well with a wooden spoon until distributed throughout.
- Add the warm milk and egg, and continue mixing until the mixture comes together into a dough. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour, or alternatively, add a touch more warm water if the dough is too firm. You should be able to handle the dough without it sticking too much to your fingers. Knead the dough for 10 minutes on a lightly floured surface, until smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough in a lightly oiled mixing bowl, cover with a clean damp tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
- Punch the dough back down in size. Divide into 12 even-sized pieces and place them on a lightly greased baking sheet lined with parchment, bear in mind they will double in size again, so leave plenty od space between them. Cover again with the tea towel and leave in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 220C/200C Fan.
- To make the crosses, roll out the shortcrust pastry on a lightly floured surface until about 3mm thick and cut out pastry strips. Brush the risen buns with beaten egg, lay on the pastry cases and brush once again with the egg.
- Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until they are lovely and golden, and sound hollow if you tap them underneath.
- Meanwhile place the ingredients for the glaze in a small saucepan and heat until the sugar has dissolved and the marmalade has loosened. As soon as the buns are ready, remove from the oven paint on the glaze and leave to cool slightly.
I was so pleased with how these turned out, they are absolutely delicious. It will definitely be homemade Hot Cross Buns that grace our table at Easter from now on.
Mr. Simply Homemade was highly impressed with them, as were three out of the five children, my fussy eater being one of those, he does surprise me sometimes!
They are the perfect accompaniment to that mid morning cuppa and not too sweet.