Home made Hot Cross Buns

hot cross bunsThe best thing about anything HOMEMADE is the surprisingly good quality product you end up with.  These days we can buy products for everything that we forget how good real homemade is.  Take Lemon curd for example.  Homemade is, tangy, buttery and sweet all in one mouthful.  Homemade pasta is light, silky, full of flavour and extremely quick to cook.  Pesto is bright vibrant  green, fragrant and even a little chewy.  Hummus can be smooth or chunky, full of garlic, loaded with lemon, mixed with sweet onion or topped with toasted cumin seed.  You’re in control.

Once you have mastered any good recipe the scope to adapt it is huge.  Mixing the flours used in breads, adding seeds and nuts.  Adding spices to dressings, fresh fruit to cakes to make googie desserts.   Slurping Whiskey or Baileys into Christmas custards or espresso coffee to a home made chocolate bourbon.  Turning a tea time treat into a surprising after dinner petit four biscuit. 

What will you adapt?

Last night I made hot cross buns.  Home made is best, adapting is an option and the super market buns are in a bag with “off to feed the duck” written on the side! 

Sour Cherry hot cross buns


600gr strong white flour

80gr brown bread flour

2 sachets dried yeast

Pinch of salt

80gr caster sugar

Tsp Cinnamon

Tsp mixed spice

Small pinch of cloves-optional

80gr Dried Sour cherries or cranberries

80gr Raisins

Zest of one  lemon

Zest of one clementine


80gr melted butter

175ml warm milk

175ml warm water

1 free range egg



To make the crosses

100gr strong white flour

Pinch of salt

25 gr melted butter

100ml of warm water


The sticky glaze

75ml water

1 tbs caster sugar

Pinch of cinnamon or all spice


To make the buns, add all the dry ingredients together and combine well in a large bowl.  In a jug mix all the wet ingredients and pour over the dry, mix with your hands to form a dough and turn out to knead onto a lightly floured surface.  Knead for about 5-8 mins.  Lightly oil the big bowl and plop the dough back in.  Cover with loose cling film and a tea towel and leave for a couple of hours to double in size.  ( this is a great time to go and feed the ducks!)

Knock out the dough and split into 14-18 small buns, work each one into a round and place onto a lightly floured baking tray pan about two inches apart.  Again cover with cling film and a tea towel and leave again to almost double in size about an hour or so.  ( this is a great time to put your feet up, all that kneading is hard work!)

To make the crosses place the flour and salt in a bowl and combine with the melted butter and water to form a thick batter, put this into a piping bag  and pipe crosses on each bun.  Don’t worry if they look chucky, homemade is full of caricature.

Bake in a hot oven – 190oc for about 20 mins,  or until golden brown.

For the Glaze.  Whilst they are in the oven put the water, sugar and cinnamon into a pan and bring to the boil.  Boil rapidly for a minute. As soon as the buns come out of the oven glaze them in this spicy sweet liquor with a pastry brush.

Eat with butter, share with family.  Happy Easter





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