Thursday, February 28, 2013

Hot Cross Buns

One a penny, two a penny hot cross buns....

There was this more than half packet of mixed fruit left over after baking a cake and I was looking for a recipe (other than cake) to use them.  I thought of a fruit bun and subsequently found the recipe* of hot cross buns.

The  buns have spice and are also sweetish and traditionally made on Good Friday ( all this I read, after I had baked them).  The cross was originally  incised on the bun before baking.  But now most of them are piped on like I did.  And folklore states that if baked on Good Friday, they will never go mouldy, bring prosperity, and if shared you will have an everlasting friendship etc etc.

Anyway, hot cross buns are extremely tasty and are no longer restricted to Easter but are made and enjoyed all year round

                                                    (Just out of the oven)
Ingredients:  Makes 8

Mixed Dried Fruit - 85 gms
Orange zest - 1 small orange
Dried yeast - 3.5-4 gms
Caster sugar - 85 gms
Milk - 150 ml warm
Unsalted butter - 35 gms + 1 tbsp ( I used mildly salted butter)
Strong white bread flour - 300 gms
Egg - 1
Plain flour - 25 gms
Salt - pinch ( I omitted this since I used salted butter)
Mixed spice - 1 1/2 tsp ( I did not have mixed spice but used instead a mixture of cinnamon, ginger )

Mix the dried fruit and orange zest and keep aside.
Put yeast in a small bowl along with a tbsp of sugar, pour 2 tbsp of warm milk.  It will begin to foam in 5-10 minutes
Whisk together ( or use a food processor) the flour, 55 g sugar, mixed spice, and softened butter till it resembles bread crumbs.
Put in a large bowl, make a well in the center and add the yeast mixture and remaining milk.  Mix.  It should form a sticky dough.  Add more milk if necessary.
Put onto a floured surface ( I try to use less flour and use a little olive oil instead to knead) - knead for about 10 minutes
Add the dried fruit mixture in small amounts till all is added and the dough is well combined and is smooth and elastic.
Place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film.  Leave in warm place for an hour or more till double in size.
Then knock the dough
Press into a rectangular shape.  Divide and shape into 8 balls of equal size.
Place almost touching on a baking tray that has been  lined with parchment.
Cover with damp towel and leave in a warm place until double in size.  The balls of dough will join together also. This may take upto an hour.
Preheat the oven to 200 C.
Make an egg solution with the yolk and a little milk
Brush the buns lightly with the solution.
Form a paste with plain flour, a tbsp of melted butter and 2 tbsp of water.  Put in piping bag and pipe a cross on top of each bun.
Place tray in oven.  Bake for 5 minutes and then reduce temperature to 170C and bake for 10-15 minutes till  well risen and golden.
Remove from oven and cool on wire rack
In a small pan, gently heat remaining sugar (25 gms) and tsp of water to dissolve.  Bring to boil and then brush this on the cooled buns.
Allow to cool completely before serving

*Recipe source -  Sainsbury's

For variation - they have been made with toffee, apple and cinnamon, orange and cranberry.  Some have used chocolate chips instead of dried fruit.  It is all up to you !


  1. Hot Cross buns looks delicious. you made it very well.

  2. Radha I love these cross buns and wanting to make them for Easter. I love their taste and addition of raisins. You had done it so well guess the mixed fruit is leftovers of the fruit cake :P lovely recipe sure a keeper

  3. remembering the nursery rhyme, they look super glossy and yumm..

  4. When I saw hot cross buns it reminded me of the nursery rhymes.. :)
    Bun has come out perfectly.

  5. nice buns Radha and I have been wanting to bake them too. I may have to find something to replace he eggs for the cross.

    1. The egg is just for the glaze. You can just brush them with milk. The cross is with flour, butter and water

  6. same Divya.... It reminds me the Hot cross bun nursery Rhymes....

  7. Oh... they are looking so tempting and delicious. I think this recipe is worth getting my oven fixed. ;)

  8. buns look perfectly baked and very tempting!

  9. looks so good and perfect..

  10. I always want to make some cross buns, time to make some. They came out prefectly.

  11. One a penny, two a penny.. this nursery rhyme makes these more interesting than anyother bun for me!
    These looks so soft... almost melt in the mouth!

  12. The buns looks delicious !!!!What is strong white bread flour ? Normal white bread crumbs or something else ?

    1. Strong bread flour has a high content of gluten - which is the natural protein of wheat. This flour is made from hard wheat that has a higher gluten content. When the dough of such flour is kneaded it develops a strong structure that is essential for the making of a good bread.

  13. Hot cross buns look so perfect and tempting..

  14. Dry fruit breadsss wowwwww yummyyyyyyyyyyy

  15. Wow! Super looking Buns! I always wanted to make these. Seeing these buns (nice pics) I am tempted to try them soon!

  16. That one can actually make something looking THIS nice at home always surprises me! I can never believe I can do it and feel happy just looking at fantastic baked food coming from an Indian kitchen. It seems R.K.Narayan said in one of his essays - We sat at school, repeating after the teacher, 'A' for Apple pie. When someone asked the teacher "what is an Apple pie", the teacher didnot know. "It must be like our idli", he said. Times are so different now...

    1. Yes indeed. Thanks to all the cookery shows, one is sufficiently motivated ! But I am a novice at baking, but managed these 'good looking' buns. And honestly, if I can make them, anyone can !

  17. This is Homemade ?? OMG I wish I could make them !

    Smitten by Lip Print!!


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