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Recipe Love: Hot Cross Buns

An age-old tradition, it’s all about hot cross buns for Easter, a signature bun that brings comfort and warmth with their delicious taste and breathtaking aroma. The perfect compliment to a cup of hot tea shared with friends and family for a late afternoon catch-up or post Easter lunch snack, there’s nothing more satisfying than taking out a batch of freshly cooked hot cross buns from the oven on a cold day.

Whether you wait until the morning of Good Friday or start eating as soon as Christmas is over, this traditional bun is typically filled with dried fruit, seasoned with fresh spices and boasts a well-glazed crust. It is most commonly toasted and spread with lashings of butter and served with a big cup of hot chocolate or coffee.

Read on below for our favourite hot cross bun recipe:

Ingredients:
  • 7g sachet (2 teaspoons) dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat milk, warmed
  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 50g butter, chilled, chopped
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup sultanas
  • 1 teaspoon powdered gelatine

Flour paste:

  • 1/3 cup plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar

Directions:

  1. Grease a 4cm-deep, 18cm x 28cm (base) slice pan. Place yeast, sugar and milk in a bowl. Stir until combined and yeast is dissolved. Cover and set aside in a warm place for 10 minutes or until foamy.
  2. Sift flour and mixed spice into a bowl. Rub in butter until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre of flour mixture. Add yeast mixture, 1/4 cup warm water, egg and sultanas. Stir to combine. Cover and set aside in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

  3. Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan-forced. Turn dough onto a floured surface. Knead for 5 to 8 minutes or until smooth. Form into 12 balls. Place balls in prepared pan, 1cm apart. Cover and set aside in a warm place for 45 minutes or until balls double in size.

  4. Make flour paste: Whisk flour, sugar and 1/4 cup cold water together in a jug. Spoon into a snap-lock bag. Snip off 1 corner from bag. Pipe crosses onto buns. Bake buns for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden and cooked through.

  5. Place 3 teaspoons hot water in a jug. Sprinkle gelatine over water. Stir with a fork until gelatine dissolves. Turn buns onto a wire rack. Brush tops with gelatine mixture. Allow to cool. Serve.

Do you have a favourite hot cross bun recipe? Let us know in your comments below!