Hot Cross Buns

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By Darren Purchese

Who doesn’t love a Hot Cross Bun with butter? Honestly, such a joy and it is super rewarding to make your own! I have mine straight out of the oven with loads of butter.

Do the hard stuff the day before and let the buns slow prove overnight for a better flavour and ease the next day. For this recipe I've chosen to do a hand painted cross but you can change to a conventional piped cross if you prefer.

Time

3

hour

15

minutes

Degree of Difficulty

Medium

Save

0

Portions

12
Portions

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Ingredients

Servings

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PASTE

240 ml water, lukewarm
28g dried active yeast
80g strong flour
15g caster sugar
20g skimmed milk powder

DOUGH

400g strong flour
80g caster sugar
85g unsalted butter
1tsp salt
55g egg (approx. 1 large egg)
1tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp ground nutmeg
1tsp ground clove
1 lemon zest, fine microplane
40g currants
40g golden raisins, chopped
40g candied mixed peel, chopped

EGG WASH

2 egg yolks
 splash milk
 pinch salt

CROSS

75g plain flour
50g caster sugar
40 ml water

SYRUP

100 ml water
100g sugar
1

For the paste… in a bowl whisk together, all of the dry ingredients for the paste and add the water, mix well again to eliminate any lumps. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave the bowl in a warm place for up to 45 minutes or until the paste has doubled in size.

 

2

 

3

To soak the fruit… place all of the fruit into a bowl and cover with hot water to soak. Leave for 10 minutes and then drain off the water.

 

4

Mix the dough… add the starter first and then the dough ingredients (except the fruit and zest), into a bowl and start to mix by hand.

 

5

Work the dough for a couple of minutes to bring it together and then knead the dough for a further 6-8 minutes by hand on a work bench. The dough will be slightly sticky but will eventually come together. 

 

6

Add the fruit… flatten the dough and add the fruit on top, then using a microplane grate the lemon zest over the top. Mix well by hand to incorporate the fruit before rolling into a ball and transferring the dough into a medium sized mixing bowl.

 

7

Lightly spray the surface of the dough with canola spray and lay a tea towel over the top to prevent drying out.

 

8

First prove… leave the bowl to prove in a warm place to double in size. Depending on the temperature of your dough at the start or the temperature of your room this could take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour or more. 

 

9

After the first prove… once doubled, knock back the dough and remove it from the remove the bowl onto work surface.

 

10

Portion the dough… use scales and a knife the cut and portion the dough into 12 equal sized pieces (approx. 90 g each) and roll each piece into a tight ball. Place the balls onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.

 

11

Lightly spray each ball again with canola spray. Cover with a tea towel over the top of the buns.

 

12

Second prove… place the tray in the fridge to slow prove overnight. Or leave them out and prove them at room temperature, still covered, until they double in size.

 

13

Make the egg wash… by mixing the yolks, milk and salt together, strain the egg wash through a small sieve. 

 

14

After the second prove… once the buns have expanded to almost double in size gently remove the tea towel cling film and lightly brush the egg wash onto the surface of each bun using a pastry brush and ensuring the dough does not get knocked back by heavy handedness. 

 

15

Pre heat the oven… to a temperature of 200C

 

16

Make the cross mixture… by mixing the flour, sugar and water to a smooth paste. 

 

17

Make the syrup… by boiling the sugar and water together until the sugar has dissolved. 

 

18

Bake the buns… place the buns into the oven and bake for 12 minutes before removing. Use a thin pastry brush to gently brush a hand painted ‘cross’ onto each bun. Place the tray back into the oven for up to 1 minute to ‘set’ the cross.

 

19

Remove the tray from the oven and brush the syrup over the top of each bun. Transfer the bus to a wire cooling rack and leave to cool a little before slathering in butter and demolishing.

 

1
0 hours 0 minutes

For the paste… in a bowl whisk together, all of the dry ingredients for the paste and add the water, mix well again to eliminate any lumps. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave the bowl in a warm place for up to 45 minutes or until the paste has doubled in size.

2
0 hours 0 minutes
3
0 hours 0 minutes

To soak the fruit… place all of the fruit into a bowl and cover with hot water to soak. Leave for 10 minutes and then drain off the water.

4
0 hours 0 minutes

Mix the dough… add the starter first and then the dough ingredients (except the fruit and zest), into a bowl and start to mix by hand.

5
0 hours 0 minutes

Work the dough for a couple of minutes to bring it together and then knead the dough for a further 6-8 minutes by hand on a work bench. The dough will be slightly sticky but will eventually come together. 

6
0 hours 0 minutes

Add the fruit… flatten the dough and add the fruit on top, then using a microplane grate the lemon zest over the top. Mix well by hand to incorporate the fruit before rolling into a ball and transferring the dough into a medium sized mixing bowl.

7
0 hours 0 minutes

Lightly spray the surface of the dough with canola spray and lay a tea towel over the top to prevent drying out.

8
0 hours 0 minutes

First prove… leave the bowl to prove in a warm place to double in size. Depending on the temperature of your dough at the start or the temperature of your room this could take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour or more. 

9
0 hours 0 minutes

After the first prove… once doubled, knock back the dough and remove it from the remove the bowl onto work surface.

10
0 hours 0 minutes

Portion the dough… use scales and a knife the cut and portion the dough into 12 equal sized pieces (approx. 90 g each) and roll each piece into a tight ball. Place the balls onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.

11
0 hours 0 minutes

Lightly spray each ball again with canola spray. Cover with a tea towel over the top of the buns.

12
0 hours 0 minutes

Second prove… place the tray in the fridge to slow prove overnight. Or leave them out and prove them at room temperature, still covered, until they double in size.

13
0 hours 0 minutes

Make the egg wash… by mixing the yolks, milk and salt together, strain the egg wash through a small sieve. 

14
0 hours 0 minutes

After the second prove… once the buns have expanded to almost double in size gently remove the tea towel cling film and lightly brush the egg wash onto the surface of each bun using a pastry brush and ensuring the dough does not get knocked back by heavy handedness. 

15
0 hours 0 minutes

Pre heat the oven… to a temperature of 200C

16
0 hours 0 minutes

Make the cross mixture… by mixing the flour, sugar and water to a smooth paste. 

17
0 hours 0 minutes

Make the syrup… by boiling the sugar and water together until the sugar has dissolved. 

18
0 hours 0 minutes

Bake the buns… place the buns into the oven and bake for 12 minutes before removing. Use a thin pastry brush to gently brush a hand painted ‘cross’ onto each bun. Place the tray back into the oven for up to 1 minute to ‘set’ the cross.

19
0 hours 0 minutes

Remove the tray from the oven and brush the syrup over the top of each bun. Transfer the bus to a wire cooling rack and leave to cool a little before slathering in butter and demolishing.