Hot Cross Buns – Mother Goose Would Love These

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Pretty much all I know about hot cross buns, I learned from the nursery rhyme, but thanks to a recipe I found on Anson Mills, I was still able to make a fairly decent batch. Including real crosses, not to be confused with dinner rolls on which an icing cross has been piped.

In addition to its eye-catching appearance, the dough-based “cross” provides an interesting textual contrast, as it gets sort of chewy, and crispy edged.

Like I said in the video, any sweet dough will work with this easy technique, especially rich, and fragrant examples, like our Italian Easter Bread dough. Times may vary, but regardless of the dough, simply wait for the dough to double in size, and proceed.

If you want to get all your buns the same size, weight your dough in grams before dividing, and then divide by 16. Then, weight each of your dough balls to that exact amount, and boom, your tray of buns will look like the ones you saw on that magazine cover. Or, just eyeball it and take your chances. Either way, I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 15 or 16 Hot Cross Buns:
Recipe slightly adapted from this one from Anson Mills
1/4 cup currants, soaked in hot rum for an hour or two
3/4 cup milk warmed to 100 F.
1 package dry active yeast
1 tablespoon each orange and lemon zest
7 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1 large egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
3 cups bread *flour, plus more if needed

* hold back a little of the flour until you sure you need it. You can always add, but can’t remove!

For the crosses:
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup all-purpose flour, plus more to make a thin, pipe-able dough

- Bake at 425 F. for about 15 minutes

For the glaze:
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons water
- Cook syrup to 225 F., and brush over warm
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