Hot Cross Buns

28 March 2013

Hot cross buns! Hot cross buns! 
One a penny two a penny, hot cross buns.
If you have no daughters, give them to your sons.
One a penny two a penny, hot cross buns.

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One of the things I miss about the UK at Easter time is eating hot cross buns. There are two major obstacles – firstly, they are not sold in Germany. Secondly, even if we were in the UK, I don’t know if anywhere does gluten free versions. So I set about baking some myself. The recipe is a combination of several different recipes I found online.

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When setting out to bake these, keep in mind that while they only take about 15 mins in the oven, there’s a total rising time of 2.5 hours involved, at different stages, so it’s something best reserved for baking at lazy weekends.

Ingredients

  • 500g gluten free bread flour (e.g. Schär or Dove’s Farm)
  • 1 sachet dry yeast (ca. 7g)
  • 50g muscovado sugar
  • 250ml lukewarm milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 50g softened butter
  • 2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • 100g raisins
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 4 tablespoons gluten free plain flour
  • 3 tablespoons water

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Directions

Step 1- Making the yeast mixture (30 mins rising time)

  • Combine 100g of the bread flour with all of the yeast and 1teaspoon of the sugar, then mix in the milk.
  • Cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes until the mixture has risen and looks spongey.

Step 2 – Making your dough (1 hour risin time)

  • In a separate bowl, combine the remaining flour with the salt and rub in the butter.
  • Stir in the mixed spice, the remaining sugar and the raisins.
  • Add the beaten egg and the yeast mixture and stir together to make a dough. The dough should be not too dry and not too sticky. Adjust with a little more flour or milk if necessary.
  • Knead the dough for about 5 minutes.
  • Clean and lightly oil the bowl, then place the dough back in it, cover it with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour or until doubled in size.

Step 3 – Making the buns (1 hour rising time)

  • Once it has risen and doubled in size, knead the dough again for about a minute, then cut in to 8 equal pieces and shape each piece in to a bun.
  • Place the buns on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper, cover loosely, e.g. with a clean tea towel, and leave to rise for another hour. The buns should feel slightly puffy when touched.

Step 4: Ready to bake

  • Pre-heat your oven to 200°C (or 180°C for a fan oven).
  • To make the crosses, mix the plain flour and the water in to a paste. Cut a tiny corner off a plastic food bag, fill in the paste and pipe crosses on to the risen buns.
  • Bake the buns for 15 minutes. If you’re using gluten free flour, they probably won’t go golden on top so make sure they don’t burn.

Step 5: Ready to eat

  • To make a glaze for the buns, mix together another tablespoon of muscovado sugar with a teaspoon of milk.
  • Brush the glaze on the buns when you take them out the oven.
  • Serve warm with shavings of butter and a nice cup of tea.

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I found that these don’t rise as well with gluten free flour as they do with regular flour, so they’re a little more dense, but they’re still really tasty!!

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