Okay, before we start I have to get this one out of the way: 🎶🎶🎶 Hot Cross Bun, Hot Cross Bun, One a Penny, Two a Penny! Hot Cross Buns!
Now that I have that sorted and out of the way, welcome to the first instalment of Easter 2021 – I remember Christmas like it was yesterday. Is it only me? Time is bloody flying again and we’re still stuck inside. Oh, dear.
For some reason, I had some sort of expectations on being able to celebrate Easter differently this year. And by differently I mean actually celebrating it. Because, you see, we never do anything for Easter other than eat chocolate.
Recommended: How to Brew a Pourover
So this year could have been the time where we would have gone back home to see the parents. Nein. Non. Not happening. I guess we will revert to eat all the chocolate once again.
But you don’t like chocolate, do you?
Absolutely right. And what makes it worst is…my favourite chocolate egg is actually either not available in the UK, or it costs something along the lines of £25 for a small one. No thanks.
Anyways, we have ended up embracing yet another holiday. And since we are here in London, we thought it would be nice to embrace English traditions. We have made Hot Cross Buns before, but never this nice!
I always find anything like this quite daunting and scary, yet these were easy to prep and even easier to chomp down.
Also – please keep an eye out for a vegan version too, as soft as they get.
- 9g instant dry yeast
- 110g caster sugar
- 375ml warm full-fat milk
- 640g strong white flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons all spice
- ½ tsp salt
- 50g dried cranberries
- 60g sultanas
- 1 apple (grated)
- zest of 1 orange
- 50g unsalted butter, melted
- 1 egg
- 75g flour
- 5 tablespoons warm water
- 1 tablespoon apricot jam
- 2 teaspoons warm water
- In the bowl of your standing mixer, place the flour, yeast, sugar, spices and salt and mix quickly so that everything is combined.
- Add the butter, milk, egg, dried fruit, grated apple and zest, then mix until it's all smooth and together. It will take roughly 5 minutes with the standing mixer, but if you are doing it by hand it might be slightly longer, along the 10 minutes mark.
- Leave the dough to rise in the bowl, covered with cling film and place it in a warm spot, leaving it until it is doubled in size - usually between 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours depending on how warm your place is.
- Once it is doubled in size, remove the cling film and punch the dough to deflate.
- Dust the surface with flour and place the dough on it, then shape it into a log and cut into 12 equal pieces.
- Press each piece down and work it to get a ball shape and roll it to form a ball. Place it smooth-side-up on a tray covered with parchment and repeat with the other pieces.
- Spray a piece of cling film with oil and cover the buns for a second rise, roughly 30-45 minutes so they are just less of doubling in size.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C and prep your crosses mix: you'll need a thick, runny paste to form and once the right consistency is there, move it into a piping bag.
- Now remove the cling film and pipe the crosses on to the buns.
- Bake for 22 minutes, or until they are deep golden brown.
- Mix the jam and warm water and brush the buns as soon as they come out of the oven, then leave them to cool down on a cooling rack.
They do not last for more than 2-3 days tops, if stored in a airtight container.
Toast them and smother them in salty butter – that’s the only way you should really eat them!
What about the savoury Hot Cross Buns?
I have also read you could try the savoury version with bacon, but I have yet to taste that so the jury is still out on it.
For the vegan version of these hot cross buns, we have replaced the butter for the vegan counterpart, same for the milk – we like oat milk as it has a very subtle taste, and the most similar in consistency to normal milk – and have replaced the egg by using this new product we absolutely love called Crack’d.
Are you ready for Easter yet? Or are you still thinking of Christmas like me?