Festival Week

Tuesday, 08 Oct 2019

Hot cross buns are soft, sweet spiced fruit buns. Topped with a sticky glaze and marked with a cross on the top. Traditionally eaten on Good Friday, but why limit yourself? Hot cross buns are delicious at any time of the year, and the combination of dried fruits and spices makes them perfect for Christmas.


Hot Cross Buns For Christmas Great British Bake Off



  • 1kg plain white flour
  • 160g sugar
  • 160g butter
  • 5 eggs
  • 40g yeast
  • 20g salt
  • 20g mixed spice
  • 400ml milk
  • 300g sultanas
  • 100g orange peel
  • 150g currants
  • White caster sugar and water for glaze 

This recipe is generous and should make around 18 buns.

Flour, sugar, mixed spice and yeast, eggs and milk mix until smooth. 

It's important to leave out butter and salt as salt on this first mix as salt can kill yeast and damage proving process.

Once you have a smooth dough, add salt and butter and mix again. You should mix until the dough is coming away from the side of the bowl without residue. 

Cover with cling film and leave for 90 minutes in a warm room, wait until doubled in size.

When proving the dough, particularly that last session, be careful not to let it rise too much (judge by eye, rather than time), and once it has doubled in bulk, whip it into the oven before it becomes uneven. Over-proved dough will be dry and greasy.

Once risen, take the soft dough and blend the fruit in. This can be done softly by hand. Cut into even palm sized chunks, around 100g each. Roll into balls and placed on a tray lined with baking paper. Be sure to leave room for buns to expand. Cover with cling film and leave to prove until doubled in size.

Be sure to cover your buns, because exposure to air can cause a skin to form on the dough and ruin proving. 

Take white mix and put into plastic food bag. Snip the corner and pipe crosses on your buns. This mix is very runny so you will need to move quick! 

Place in the oven for 12 minutes at 180 degrees.

A few minutes before your buns are due to come out, put equal amounts of sugar into a pan and bring to the boil to make a syrup. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly while you remove your buns from the oven. Gently brush the syrup mix onto buns to give a glossy shine. 

When buns are cool, decorate with icing, edible glitter and cranberries then dust with icing sugar for a festive finish. 

Tip: make icing with orange juice for an extra citrus twist. 



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