Enjoy - It's From Europe

Hot cross buns

  • Prep: 30m
  • Cook: 20m
  • Serves: 9

Once you’ve tasted a homemade hot cross bun you’ll never buy the shop-bought version again. And they’re not as technical to make as you might imagine. We've used the traditional mixed spice and candied peel flavours here, but you can experiment with other combinations too – such as fig and saffron or apricot and cardamom.

Method

  1. Put the milk and butter in a small saucepan and set over a gentle heat until the butter has melted. Remove and cool until lukewarm.
  2. Put the flour in a large mixing bowl then add the yeast, sugar, salt and spices. Make sure the yeast and the salt don’t touch as the un-diluted salt can kill the yeast which means it won’t rise.
  3. Pour the lukewarm milk mixture into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix everything together. As the dough is coming together, break in the egg and continue mixing until you have a sticky mess.
  4. Add the sultanas, mixed peel and orange zest then knead the dough for 10 minutes. You can do this by hand or in a free-standing mixer with the dough hook attachment. The dough should transform from wet and sticky to smooth and silky. Cover and leave to rise for 1.5 hours or until doubled in size.
  5. Divide the dough into 9 pieces, dust lightly with flour to make them easier to handle and shape them into round buns. Arrange them on a dusted baking tray so they are around 2cm apart. Put the tray in a plastic bag or cover with a tea towel and leave to rise for 30 minutes.
  6. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C fan / 210°C non-fan / gas mark 7.
  7. Mix the plain flour with around 75ml water to create a thick paste. Spoon into a piping bag and pipe crosses over the top of your proved buns. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.
  8. Melt the jam in a small saucepan and brush it over the warm buns to give a shiny glaze. Leave to cool then serve with plenty of butter.

Ingredients

All to be sourced organic where possible

  • 300ml whole milk
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened
  • 500g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 10g dried quick action yeast
  • 10g salt
  • 60g caster sugar
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 egg
  • 100g sultanas
  • 75g mixed peel
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 75g plain flour
  • 2 tbsp apricot jam
Kathy Slack

Kathy Slack

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