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It’s Easter week and my sous-chef dish-washing mom and I are invited to a friend’s house tomorrow. I want to take a little something to the hostess. It is the southern way after all. After church, I decided to make Hot Cross Buns.
These buns are a delicious, fragrant and beautiful addition to any Easter dinner table.
I have made them before but not for a long time. If memory serves me right I think in the past I have made regular yeast rolls and placed a frosting cross on the top. Yikes!But, now I have Pinterest. I wandered the internet looking for the best hot cross buns recipe and found that all were mostly similar with slight personal touches to the usual ingredients.
I also read hundreds of hot cross buns reviews to finally settle on a good starting point with one which I adapted from The Food Network. It had good reviews, a reasonable list of ingredients and a nice picture. 🙂
I decided that I didn’t want to “just use raisins” instead of currants, which can be hard to find (or so I thought.) That is when I easily found these Zante Currants on Amazon as well as my local grocery store. I am so glad I paid a little more and bought these currants.
These rolls can be made start to finish in about 3 hours with plenty of time while the bread is raising to do other things in the kitchen. I threw in this picture just because I adore making bread and I think each stage is beautiful.
My Chief Culinary Consultant and Sous-chef dish-washing mom and I each tried out a fresh hot cross bun with our leftover hashbrown omelet. May I just say, “Oh my gosh!” This recipe is a keeper and I’ll be making these again this weekend for our Easter dinner.
Wishing you a lovely Easter week filled with sweet bread and precious moments spent in prayer and fellowship with our Heavenly Father.
Have a blessed Easter,
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast (2 (1/4 ounce) packages)
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted, plus as needed
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 cup currants
- 1 egg beaten, for brushing
For the icing/glaze:
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 teaspoon finely gated lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Step 1: Combine the water and milk in a medium saucepan and warm over low heat until about 100 degrees F (but no more than 110 degrees). Using the dough hook in your mixer, add the milk/water, sprinkle the yeast and a pinch of sugar over the surface of the liquid. Set aside without stirring, until foamy and rising up the sides of the pan, about 30 minutes or less.
Step 2: With the mixer on low, whisk the butter, egg yolk and vanilla into the yeast mixture.
Step 3: With the mixer on medium beat in the flour, the remaining sugar, salt, cardamon, nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger. Stir in currants.
Step 4: Continue kneading the dough in the mixer until soft and elastic, about 3 to 5 minutes. Shape into a ball.
Step 5: Brush the inside of a large bowl with butter. Put dough in bowl, turning to coat lightly with butter. Cover with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 hour 30 minutes.
Step 6: To form the rolls: Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking pan. Turn the dough out of the bowl. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions, about 2 ounces each.
Step 7: Tuck the edges of the dough under to make round rolls and place them seam-side down in the prepared pan, leaving a little space in between each roll. Cover the pan with buttered plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until the rolls rise almost to the rim of the pan and have more than doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
Step 8: Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.
Step 9: Remove the plastic wrap and brush the tops of the buns with beaten egg. Bake rolls until golden brown and puffy, and an instant read thermometer inserted into the center of the rolls registers 190 degrees F, about 25 minutes.
Step 10: For the glaze: Stir together confectioners' sugar, milk, lemon zest and vanilla until smooth. Transfer icing to a zip bag or pastry bag, and make a small cut in the corner of the bag. Ice buns in a thick cross shape over the top of the warm buns.
Adapted from The Food Network Kitchens.