Friday, 3 April 2015

It's not too late to make a batch of these beautiful Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross buns are one of the great joys of the season. It is not too late to mix up a batch of these beauties this weekend. Time being short, I modified the method from my usual in order to speed up the mixing process. 

Hot Cross Buns
Makes 2 dozen

For the buns:
1 cup milk
1 cup hot water
4 teaspoons instant dried yeast - use the one in the sachet, it's always fresher.
100g softened butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground mace
5 cups high grade flour
3 cups mixed dried fruit - this year I used 2 cups of raisins, 1/2 cup dried cranberries and 1/2 cup chopped crystallised ginger

For the crosses
3 tablespoons flour
1-2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon brown sugar
a plastic disposable piping bag

For the glaze
3 tablespoons honey

Measure all the ingredients except the flour and fruit into a large bowl. Whisk them together; down worry if the butter stays in lumps.

Add the flour and using one hand stir the mixture around until a dough forms. 

Transfer the dough to an oiled bench and knead until the dough is smooth and resilient when pressed. 

It is a sticky little number, so just persevere even when it seems to stick to everything. 

Once it's sufficiently elastic, sprinkle the bench with a little flour and knead the fruit into the dough. 

Oil the mixing bowl (no need to wash it) coat the ball of dough in the oil. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap that has been dampened with water on the inside. 

Leave the dough in the bowl in a warm place until it has at least doubled in size - as shown. 

Once sufficiently risen, turn out of the bowl and knead lightly. 

Preheat the oven to just 40deg. C. 

Divide the dough into two and cover the half you are not working on. 

Divide each half into four, then each four into three individual buns. 

Shape the buns by rolling then in small circles between the bench and the open palm of your hand as shown. 

Place them onto a lined baking tin and cover with a large piece of plastic food wrap that has been spread with a mixture of oil and water. 

Put into the 40 degree oven to prove for about 30 minutes. The buns should have doubled in size as shown. 

While they prove, mix up the cross paste. Mix the flour, sugar and water to form a soft paste. Add more water if the mixture is too stiff. Transfer the paste to a small disposable piping bag. 

Once the buns have risen, take them from the oven and reset the temperature to 200deg. C.  

Snip off the end of the piping bag and pipe lines across all the buns to form the crosses as shown. 

Once the oven has reached 200deg. C. bake the buns for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Melt the honey and use a pastry brush to glaze the buns with the honey while they are still warm. 

Now find the butter and some friends, and you are ready for an Easter celebrating. These buns are best freshly baked, but can be heated the next day to warm and freshen them up.


  1. I was just about to post my baking of buns yesterday. But yours look amazing!! Nothing like the homemade version

  2. rather than type my recipe up I have linked to your post as the details are so good.

  3. Thank you! That's very kind of you. Have a lovely Easter!