Spiced, sweet and sticky; you can’t beat these traditional Easter buns fresh from the oven. You’ll never consider shop-bought again!
Hot Cross Buns, Hot Cross Buns, one a penny, two a penny, Hot Cross Buns!
I couldn’t help but burst into song when I took these from the oven. The smell was divine. It was torture having to wait until after I’d taken the photos before I could have a taste. You may notice in the photo above that there happens to be one bun missing – I gave in to temptation!!
There is something so comforting about Hot Cross Buns. Maybe it’s because we often eat them warm, or the sweet hint of spices, or perhaps because of the memories of many Happy Easter days spent munching toasted Hot Cross Buns with butter oozing between our fingers!
HOT CROSS BUNS WITH APPLE
adapted from ‘Hot Cross Buns’ by Paul Hollywood
- 500g strong white bread flour (plus extra for dusting)
- 10g salt
- 75g caster sugar
- 10g fast action yeast
- 40g unsalted butter
- 2 medium eggs
- 120ml warm, whole milk
- 120ml cold water
- 130g sultanas
- 50g mixed peel
- 50g glace cherries, chopped into quarters
- Zest of 2 oranges
- 1 eating apple, peeled, cored and diced
- 2 tsp cinnamon
For the crosses:
- 70g plain flour
- 70ml water
For the glaze:
- 70g apricot jam
Refer to my 6 bread-making tips if you are new to bread-making.
1. Sieve the flour into a large bowl. Add salt and sugar to one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other. Beat the eggs. Add these along with the butter, milk and about ½ of the water.
2. Start to mix together, gradually adding more of the water to collect all flour from the sides of the bowl. You might need a little more or less water. Hollywood says ‘you want dough that is soft, but not soggy’.
3. Once it has come together into a rough ball, you can begin kneading. To do this, lightly flour your worktop and work the dough for 5-10 minutes. The dough will be quite sticky to start with but as you work it it will become a much smoother consistency with a soft skin.
4. Put your dough into an oiled bowl and cover with either a tea towel or cling film. Leave it to rise for at least an hour, or if you have time, up to 3 hours. It should double in size.
5. Once risen, place the dough onto a lightly floured worktop and pour the fruit and cinnamon on top. Fold the dough into the middle repeatedly until the fruit is evenly distributed. Place back in the bowl and cover for another hour.
6. Lightly dust your worktop with flour and ‘knock back’ the dough. The purpose of this is to remove air from the dough to make it easier to shape. Fold it into the middle repeatedly. Cut into 12 evenly-sized pieces and roll into balls. Place these quite close together on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
7. Place the baking tray into a clean, plastic bag and leave to ‘prove’ for about an hour. Heat your oven to 200°C fan/220°C.
8. Before baking, mix together the flour and water to form a paste. Pipe this in thin lines across the tops of your hot cross buns.
9. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.
10. Warm the apricot jam with a little water and remove any lumps. Brush this over the tops of the warm hot cross buns as a glaze. Cool on a wire rack.