We’d never miss out on these sweet, sticky, light and buttery spiced pillows. And neither should you. Try this recipe today.
Did you know that hanging a hot cross bun in the house on Good Friday offers protection from bad luck in the coming year? It does mean that you’ll have to resist eating it for quite some time – a true test of patience if you ask us.
400g Sprouted Spelt Flour
7g quick yeast
1 teaspoon ground allspice
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
200ml whole milk
70g unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
70g coconut palm sugar
40g dried currants
40g dried unsweetened cranberries
1 tablespoon orange zest
½ teaspoon salt
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon milk
60g unrefined powered (icing) sugar
2-3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon vanilla
200g unrefined sugar
1 whole nutmeg
1 whole star anise
3 whole cloves
½ a vanilla pod, split lengthwise
In a small bowl, add in the milk and coconut palm sugar. Heat in the microwave for 30-45 seconds to warm. Mix well to dissolve the coconut palm sugar.
In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, except for the dried fruits, orange zest and salt. Make a well in the middle of the bowl and add in the milk and egg.
Mix together until it forms a rough dough, then add in the butter one cube at a time while kneading the dough with your hands. Continue kneading for about 5 minutes, until you have a smooth dough.
Add in the dried fruits, orange zest and salt and continue kneading for about 3 more minutes until the dried fruits are well dispersed.
Place the dough back in the bowl and cover with a tea towel. Leave it in a warm place for about 1 hour, until it almost doubles in size.
When the dough is ready, punch it down and divide it into 20 equal sized pieces (50g each). Roll each piece into a smooth ball. It is very important that you roll each piece until it is smooth, and there are minimal cracks on the surface of the balls. Tina recommends following this technique.
Arrange the buns on a baking tray lined with baking parchment, keeping an even gap of about ½ inch (1 cm) between each of the buns. Cover the tray with a lightly oiled plastic wrap. Let the buns rise in a warm place for about 1 hour, until they have almost doubled in size and the sides of the buns are all touching.
When they are ready, in a small bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolk and milk. Brush the buns carefully with the eggwash and leave it out to dry for 10 minutes. Brush again. You won’t need all of the eggwash, but make sure you get the eggwash into the cracks and edges of the buns.
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix until a smooth thick paste forms. Start by using only 2 tablespoons of milk and add more as needed.
Fill a piping bag with the mixture and cut a small hole. Slowly pipe a line along each row of buns, then repeat in the other direction to create crosses. Make sure you pipe slowly, so the topping “hugs” the curves on each bun.
Place the tray into the oven and immediately turn the oven down to 360°F/180°C. Bake for about 20 minutes until the tops are golden brown.
While the buns are in the oven, in a small saucepan, add in all the ingredients and bring to a boil. Immediately turn down the heat and simmer, until a syrup forms. Remove from heat and spoon out the spices.
Once the buns are ready, brush them with the hot syrup. Wait 5 minutes and brush again with the syrup.
Allow the buns to cool for about 15 minutes before serving.