One A Penny, Two A Penny, Hot Cross Buns
This year is probably the last year I'll be baking Cross Buns for the Snacks and Goodies section of the Market so I decided to share my recipe with you all so you can whip up a batch at home.
It's not a difficult process at all but be patient as it requires time. There are 2 resting periods for the dough that are crucial to a nice, soft, fluffy bun.
I hope you give it a try and let me know your thoughts.
1 3/4 cup warm milk
1 whole egg plus 1 yolk
2.5 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
3 cups all purpose flour (plus 1/2 cup for kneading)
Zest of 1 orange (or your favorite citrus)
3/4 cup chopped dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, currants or a combination of all 3)
1/3 cup melted butter
In a medium bowl, add sugar to warmed milk and whisk until dissolved. Add yeast and stir to combine. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes.
In another bowl combine all dry ingredients. Add beaten egg, chopped fruit and melted butter to yeast mixture and stir.
Using a wooden spoon or spatula for stirring, combine dry ingredients one cup at a time. A sticky dough should form. Cover with plastic wrap and let proof for 45 minutes at room temperature or 30 minutes on oven on proving setting.
Turn dough onto well floured surface and knead for 8 minutes. Adding flour (up to 1/2 cup) as needed. Place dough in an oiled bowl and cover again for another 45 minutes.
Cut dough into even pieces and roll on the palm of your hand to form a smooth ball. Place dough balls 1/2 inch apart on baking tray. Brush dough balls with beaten egg yolk and set aside.
For the Cross (optional)
Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1 tsp sugar and 8 tbsp water to form a thick paste. Pit batter into a piping bag and gently squeeze to pipe design on each dough ball.
Bake at 350 (F) for 30 mins or until golden brown and aromatic.
For the Glaze:
Combine 2 tbsp hot water with 1 tbsp sugar. If your feeling funky, go ahead and add 1 tsp rum to the mix. Brush syrup on hot buns.
Serve with cheese, butter or enjoy on your own.