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Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns Recipe -from 1t BBS Great British Bake Off

For the buns:

  • 2 oz. Bakers sugar (plus 1 teaspoon)                              
  • 5 fl. oz. hand-hot water
  • 1 level tablespoon dried yeast or packet of dried yeast
  • 1 lb. bread or strong white flour
  • 1 level teaspoon salt
  • 1 rounded teaspoon ground mixed spice * see below for spice mix
  • 3 oz golden raisins
  • 2 oz Trader Joes’ dried orange slices (chopped small)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 ½ – 2 fl. oz warmed milk
  • 1 egg, beaten

For the cross:

  • 2 ½ oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  •  5 tablespoons of water (or a little additional water, enough to pipe)
  • 2 oz melted butter

For the glaze:

3 tablespoon strained apricot jam 

Method:

A greased baking sheet or silpat 

First stir the teaspoon of bakers sugar into the hand-hot water, then sprinkle in the dried yeast and leave it until a good frothy “beer” head forms.

Meanwhile sift the flour, salt and mixed spice into a mixing bowl and add the remaining 2 oz of sugar, the golden raisins and chopped dried orange.  Then make a well in the center, pour in the yeast mixture plus 1½ fl oz of milk (again hand-hot), the beaten egg and the melted butter.  Now mix it to a dough starting with a wooden spoon and finishing with your hands (add a spot of milk if it needs it).  

Then transfer the dough onto a clean surface and knead it until it feels smooth and elastic – about 6 minutes.  Now pop it back into the bowl, cover the bowl with a lightly oiled cling film and leave it in a warm place to rise – it will take about an hour to double its original size.  Then turn it out and knead it again, back down to its original size.

Divide the mixture into twelve round portions, arrange them on a greased baking sheet or silpat (allowing plenty of room for expansion).  Leave them to rise once more, for about an hour, covering again with the oiled cling film .  Heat the oven to 425 F.

For the cross, mix the flour with about 5 tablespoons of water in a small bowl, adding the water one tablespoon at a time, so that you add just enough for a thick paste, but loose enough to pipe.  Spoon into a piping bag with a small nozzle.  Pipe a line along each row of runs, then repeat in the other direction to create crosses. 

Bake the buns for about 15 minutes in the middle shelf of the oven, or until golden brown.  Then, while they are cooking, gently heat the apricot jam to melt and strain (add a little water if necessary).  Brush over the top of the warm buns and leave to cook.  Gently rip the buns apart to serve, revealing temptingly soft edge and slather them with butter! 

Enjoy!   

Spice Mix:

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon                     
  • 2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoons ground coriander
  • ¾ teaspoon ground mace

Combine all spences in an airtight glass jar and keep store in a dark cool place for up to several months.
Makes about ¼ cup of Mixed Spices.

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