Who doesn’t love a good hot cross bun? That fresh, cinnamon, sticky goodness crammed full of juicy sultanas is tough to beat, and we’ve pulled together a crackin’ recipe that will have you smashing these out by the dozen in no time!
Ingredients – makes a dozen buns
For the buns…
A MAD Wholefoods Hot Cross Bun Kit comprising three bags;
- Dry yeast (10g)
- Sultanas (210g)
- Flour/sugar/spices (760g)
375ml (1½ cups) warm milk (tepid is good; too hot and you’ll kill the yeast!)
50g (3½ tbsp) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
A free range egg at room temperature (we recommend the free range eggs available at Two Fat Butchers!)
The zest of an orange
For the crosses (optional)…
75g (½ cup) of white flour
5 tbsp water
For the glaze…
1 tbsp of jam (we used Drunken Sailor’s Strawberry & Rose Jam)
2 tsp water
- Pour the yeast into a small bowl and add the warm milk. Give a little stir, then allow to sit for 5-10 minutes until you see a few bubbles starting to appear.
- Empty the bag of flour/sugar/spices into a standing mixer bowl* with the dough hook, and gently mix for a few minutes before adding the sultanas, butter, milk (with yeast), orange zest and egg. *If you don’t have a standing mixer, you can combine the ingredients in a large bowl, then turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes (I made the buns pictured using this method) then roll into a ball and put back into a bowl before resuming at step 4.
- Mix slowly for about 5 minutes until the mixture comes together to form a nice, smooth, elastic dough (i.e. it should stretch easily without tearing/breaking). If it looks a little wet, sprinkle in a little extra flour and mix for a further minute or so.
- Cover with a stretch lid or beeswax wrap and set aside somewhere warm to rise. It should double in size in around 40-60 minutes.
- Line a large baking tray (about 32 x 25 cm) with some baking paper (no need to grease the pan), leaving an overhang of paper so you can easily lift the buns out later.
- Turn out your risen dough on a lightly floured benchtop and knock down to deflate. Shape into a long, thick sausage, and then cut into thirds, then each third into quarters to give you 12 evenly sized slices of dough.
- With each slice, fold in the edges to the middle (like making a little purse), then turn over and turn in the hands to tighten the top into a dome-shaped ball of dough. Place, dome up, in the baking tray. The result should look something like this…
- Cover with a clean, damp tea-towel and place somewhere warm for another 30-40 minutes for a second rise. About halfway through, preheat your oven to 180C. At the end of the rise, they should have swollen to look like this…
- If you like crosses on your buns, mix up the flour and water for the crosses into a small bowl. You want a consistency that is smooth and not too runny. If you have a piping bag, use this to pipe the crosses across the buns. I didn’t, so I simply dribbled the mixture off the end of a teaspoon. Check out the result below. Terrible! But don’t worry, the baking sorts it out 😉
- Bake in the oven for 22 minutes; they should turn a deep golden brown (see below) – keep an eye on them after 15-20 minutes as ovens vary.
- Meanwhile mix up your jam and water and zap in the microwave for 20-30s to make a nice, sticky glaze mixture. Careful, the jam will be hot!
- When the buns are ready, take them out, lift them onto a cooling tray, and, using a pastry brush, glaze the tops with the jam mixture.
Allow to cool, then gently tear them apart and devour with lashings of butter and more of that delicious strawberry jam! Be sure to make appropriate <nom nom> noises.