We saw some hot cross buns at a local gourmet grocery store last week. I’ll call it gourmet due to the fact that even if I check out in the 15 and under lane, the total is always over $100. The bag of 6 buns was $4.99, which I scoffed at. I’m willing to shell out money for some things, but it felt like a challenge. I knew if I made it myself it would most likely be tastier, not to mention, actually “hot” out of the oven.
My husband’s one request was to use a light hand with the icing on the top. So imagine my excitement when I came across this recipe from bakingbites.com. It uses a paste of flour and water to make the crosses, instead of more sugar. And frankly, who needs more sugar around this holiday? One look at a Peep and my blood sugar spikes.
The house smells delicious from the baked buns. It was a welcome for my husband when he walked in from work. Since he didn’t mention a thing about the absence of icing, I quizzed him on what made them special .
Silence. Mainly due to the fact that his mouth was full, but we’ve been together for 24 years, so I’ve seen him talk with his mouth full plenty of times.
He didn’t even remember making the request. “Well, the most important thing is that YOU remembered.”
Maybe I’m not the one with the memory problem after all.
Hot cross buns are traditionally eaten on Good Friday, as the cross is a symbol of the crucifixion. Happy Easter!
Hot Cross Buns
2 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup warm water (100-110 degrees F)
4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. each of ground cloves, nutmeg, and allspice
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup currants or raisins
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup cold water
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine yeast, sugar, and warm water. Let stand 5 minutes (until foamy). Stir in 2 cups flour, buttermilk, egg, spices, and salt. Add an additionally cup of flour and the butter and stir until the dough starts to come together. Add remaining cup of flour and dried fruit. Knead for 5 minutes. Turn out on a floured surface and knead several times until dough is smooth and elastic. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently deflate by pressing gently. Divide into 16 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and place in a lightly greased 9×9 baking pan. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Right before putting the pan in the oven, whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup flour and cold water. Scrape into a Ziploc sandwich bag and cut a small hole in the corner. Pipe continuous lines vertically and horizontally through the rows to form crosses.
Bake 30-35 minutes, until buns are dark golden brown and an internal temperature reaches 200 degrees F. Cool in pan. Makes 16 buns.
Recipe barely adapted from Baking Bites.
Using the Weight Watcher Recipe Builder, each bun has 5 PointsPlus.