An iconic Easter fare, the celebration just wouldn’t be the same without Hot Cross Buns, and who better to look to for the ultimate recipe than Mary Berry.
- 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
- 75g caster sugar
- 2 tsp mixed spice powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 lemon, finely grated zest only
- 10g salt
- 10g fast-action dried yeast
- 40g butter
- 300ml oz milk
- 1 free-range egg, beaten
- 200g sultanas
- 50g finely chopped mixed peel
- oil for greasing
For the topping
- 75g plain flour
- 2 tbsp golden syrup for glazing
- Mix the flour, sugar, spices and lemon zest in a large bowl. Add the salt and yeast, placing them on opposite sides of the bowl.
- Melt the butter in a pan and warm the milk in a separate pan. Add the butter and half the tepid milk to the dry ingredients. Add the egg and use your hands to bring the mixture together, incorporating the flour from the edges of the bowl as you go. Gradually add the remaining milk, to form a soft dough.
- Tip the dough out on to a lightly floured work surface. Knead by hand and incorporate the sultanas and mixed peel. Lightly knead for 10 minutes until silky and elastic and forming a smooth ball.
- Oil a bowl and place the dough in a bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rest in a warm place for about 1½ hours or until doubled in size.
- Turn the dough out on to a floured surface and divide into 12 balls. Line 1-2 baking trays with paper and place the balls on the tray, placing them fairly close together and flattening them slightly.
- Slip each baking tray into a large clean polythene bag, making sure the bag doesn’t touch the buns. Leave for 40-60 minutes until the buns have doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 220C/200C Fan/Gas 7.
- For the topping, add the flour to a bowl with 100ml water. Mix together to make a paste and spoon into the icing bag.
- When the buns have risen remove the polythene bags and pipe a cross on each bun. Bake for 15-20 minutes until pale golden-brown.
- Melt the golden syrup in a pan, and while the buns are still warm brush them with a little syrup to give a nice shine. Set aside to cool on a wire rack.
Recipe via Mary Berry’s Easter Feast (BBC). Image via Cook Diary.