Instead of having store-bought hot cross buns this Easter, why not enjoy these delicately-spiced hot cross buns straight from the oven? You’ll love our easy, delicious recipe
- 1 cup (250 ml) milk
- 2 tbsps honey
- 2 tbsps grapeseed or vegetable oil
- 60 g butter, chopped
- 1 cup (250 ml) apple or pear juice, at room temperature
- 7 g sachet dry yeast
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp finely grated orange rind
- ⅓ cup dried currants
- ⅓ cup sultanas
- 5⅓ cups (800 g) bread flour (see tips)
- 2 tsps ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ cup (75 g) plain flour
- 1 tbsp caster (superfine) sugar
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) cold water, approximately
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp powdered gelatine
- 1 tbsp water
Bring milk to the boil in a small saucepan; remove from heat. Add honey, oil and butter; stir until combined.
Whisk juice and yeast in a large bowl until dissolved. Add egg and rind, then currants and sultanas. Add combined flour, cinnamon and salt, then milk mixture; using your hand, mix together until combined. Cover with plastic wrap; stand in a warm place for 30 mins or until the dough doubles in size.
Lightly knead dough on a lightly oiled or floured surface for 10 secs. Return to bowl, cover; stand in a warm place for 1 hour or until risen by half.
Divide the dough into 16 pieces (each a little over 90 g); shape into balls. Place in a large square cake pan or baking dish lined with baking paper or greased, in four rows of four. Cover; stand in a warm place for 30 mins or until risen by half.
Preheat oven to 200 C.
FLOUR PASTE Combine flour and sugar in a small bowl. Gradually mix in enough water to make a smooth paste. Place flour paste mixture into a small piping bag fitted with a small plain tube. Pipe crosses onto the buns.
Bake buns for 25 mins or until buns are browned and sound hollow when tapped. Cool in pan.
GLAZE Combine ingredients in a small saucepan; stir over low heat, without boiling, until sugar and gelatine dissolve.
Transfer buns to a wire rack and brush tops with glaze.
We used a 23 cm (9-inch) square cake pan for the buns. Bread flour is higher in gluten than plain flour, so produces a better-textured bun. Bread flour goes under various names: “strong”, “baker’s” or “bread”. Plain (all-purpose) flour can be substituted. The perfect warm place to prove yeast dough is a windowsill in sunlight, or on an open oven door, with the oven set at a low temperature.
Cooked buns are suitable to freeze. Not suitable to microwave.
Photo: Ben Dearnley/bauersyndication.com.au