A Hot Cross Bun is traditionally eaten on Good Friday in many parts of the world. Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns are mildly spiced, slightly sweet and studded with dry fruits with a cross on the top. These buns mark the end of Lent, a traditional time for fasting and/ or abstinence. 

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

As I mentioned that the Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns mark the end of the Lent, every part of these buns represent certain meanings too. The cross on the top is for the crucifixion of Jesus and the spices added stand for the embalming of his body at the time of his burial. So these buns are very significant. I am sure there is much more behind the history of these delicious buns but I am only going to talk about the things I know. Since I am not Catholic myself but having attended a Catholic school for the first 15 years of my life, I have a fondness for the customs and the rich history behind their practices.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns can be enjoyed with some honey, maple syrup or with jam and butter, just the way I did! My hubby on the other hand likes them plain with some tea or coffee. He says the spices and the raisins are just perfect and need no toppings. So, you see, you can choose how to enjoy them. We had them for breakfast the day I baked them but I plan on baking another batch soon.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

I first baked them almost a year and a half ago and not around Easter. I baked them because we got talking about Goa, my hubby has spent a few years there and loves the food to bits!! So he suddenly remembers these Easter Buns that he learnt to bake during his first year in college, obviously he wanted me to make them because he had such a craving!! Lol! So I tried it after a few days using Joy of Baking’s recipe, yes because he only knows what he had learnt but doesn’t remember one ingredient or recipe, hehe! The Easter Buns did turn out delicious! So I kept that recipe handy and made some changes in the quantities to make a smaller batch.

Anyways, so that’s a little bit of the background as to why I baked them to start with and I’ve baked them at least 2-3 times more after that for weekends, for my hubby to have something to nibble with the endless cups of tea that he goes through at times!

So let us get going with the recipe for the Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns. They are very easy to make and you’ll need very basic ingredients from your pantry.

These steps are for those who are using active dry yeast only
Mix together 130 ml milk, 1 tbsp. granulated sugar and the yeast in a bowl or measuring cup. Set it aside until the mixture turns frothy. It should take about 8-12 minutes. Do not touch the mixture until it has frothed up, if it doesn’t, please discard this and start again.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Take flour, salt, cinnamon powder, powdered sugar in a large bowl. Mix these dry ingredients well.

Then add the frothy yeast mixture after mixing the dry ingredients. Add the egg. Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

These steps are for those who are using instant (fast acting) yeast only – 
Take flour, salt, cinnamon powder, powdered sugar and instant yeast in a large bowl. Mix these dry ingredients well.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Next, add 130 ml of milk and the egg. Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

Following steps are common for both kinds of yeasts used –
Sprinkle some flour on the work surface and knead the dough for 8-10 minutes. You can use some butter to grease the dough if it is very sticky but avoid adding too much loose flour. I have used just about 2 tsp. of dry flour and approximately 2 tbsp. butter to grease it while kneading.

Adding too much loose flour will result in dry and hard buns.

Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

Place the dough in a greased bowl, place this a warm corner for about 1 hour.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

It will rise to about double or slightly more in size and look like this in the picture below.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Punch down the dough very gently. Knead it again for another 3-4 minutes. Pls don’t add any loose or dry flour at this stage. You can grease the dough if it is sticky/ tacky.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Divide this dough into 4 or 6 equal parts.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Shape them into round rolls crease side down and place them in a greased baking tray.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Cover them loosely with a cling wrap and set it aside for 30 minutes for the second proving. They will double in size after 30 minutes.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Grease the top of the buns with some butter after the second proving.

Prepare the paste for marking the cross by mixing water with all purpose flour. The paste must be very thick and not at all runny. Fill this paste in a piping bag and set it aside.

In the meanwhile, preheat the oven @200’c for 10 minutes after the second proving.

While oven preheats, mark the cross over the proved buns as shown in the picture below.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Bake the buns @200’c for about 20-25 minutes. Note that every oven works differently so adjust the temperature and duration accordingly. Once the buns are done, take them out of the oven and brush them with more butter.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

These buns stay moist and fresh for up to 2 days when stored in a bread box or an airtight container. You can serve them with honey, maple syrup, jams, marmalades, conserves or good old butter!

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Look at the airy crumb within, it is perfect. Do try it out, it is really so yummy and comes together very swiftly.

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns
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Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns are mildly spiced, slightly sweet and studded with dry fruits with a cross on the top. Enjoy them warm with a slathering of butter or some fruity jam! 
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Easter, Side Dish, Snack, Tea Time
Cuisine British
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Author Shreya Ashish Tiwari

Ingredients

  • 300 gms all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 40 gms powdered sugar adjust it to taste preference
  • 3/4 tsp instant yeast
  • 130 ml milk at room temperature
  • 1 no. small egg at room temperature
  • 2 tbsp black sultanas or any other dry fruits as you'd choose
  • additional flour to dust while kneading I used 2 tsp
  • 2-3 tbsp unsalted butter to grease while kneading and brush on the top at room temperature
  • 3 tbsp all purpose flour for the paste
  • 2-3 tsp plain water for the paste
  • a piping bag

Instructions

These steps are for those who are using active dry yeast only -

  1. Mix together 130 ml milk, 1 tbsp. granulated sugar and the yeast in a bowl or measuring cup. Set it aside until the mixture turns frothy. It should take about 8-12 minutes. Do not touch the mixture until it has frothed up, if it doesn't, please discard this and start again.

  2. Take flour, salt, cinnamon powder, powdered sugar in a large bowl. Mix these dry ingredients well.

  3. Then add the frothy yeast mixture after mixing the dry ingredients. Add the egg.

  4. Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

These steps are for those who are using instant (fast acting) yeast only -

  1. Take flour, salt, cinnamon powder, powdered sugar and instant yeast in a large bowl. Mix these dry ingredients well.

  2. Next, add 130 ml of milk and the egg. Mix well and knead into a dough. The dough will be very sticky/ tacky at first.

Following steps are common for both kinds of yeasts used -

  1. Sprinkle some flour on the work surface and knead the dough for 8-10 minutes. You can use some butter to grease the dough if it is very sticky but avoid adding too much loose flour.

  2. I have used just about 2 tsp. of dry flour and approximately 2 tbsp. butter to grease it while kneading. Adding too much loose flour will result in dry and hard buns.

  3. Place the dough in a greased bowl, place this a warm corner for about 1 hour.

  4. It will rise to about double or slightly more in size and look like this in the picture above.

  5. Punch down the dough very gently. Knead it again for another 3-4 minutes. Pls don't add any loose or dry flour at this stage. You can grease the dough if it is sticky/ tacky.

  6. Divide this dough into 4 or 6 equal parts.

  7. Shape them into round rolls crease side down and place them in a greased baking tray.

  8. Cover them loosely with a cling wrap and set it aside for 30 minutes for the second proving. They will double in size after 30 minutes.
    Grease the top of the buns with some butter after the second proving.

  9. Prepare the paste for marking the cross by mixing water with all purpose flour. The paste must be very thick and not at all runny. 
    Fill this paste in a piping bag and set it aside.

  10. In the meanwhile, preheat the oven @200'c for 10 minutes after the second proving.
    While oven preheats, mark the cross over the proved buns as shown in the picture above.

  11. Bake the buns @200'c for about 20-25 minutes. Note that every oven works differently so adjust the temperature and duration accordingly. Once the buns are done, take them out of the oven and brush them with more butter.

  12. These buns stay moist and fresh for up to 2 days when stored in a bread box or an airtight container. You can serve them with honey, maple syrup, jams, marmalades, conserves or good old butter!

Love,
Shreya 🙂

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Hot Cross Buns | Easter Hot Cross Buns

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