Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp. (15 ml) dried active yeast
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) sugar
  • 2 tbsp. (30 ml) lukewarm water
  • 1 cup (250 ml) scalded milk
  • 3 tbsp. (45 ml) packed, light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (65 ml) butter
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp. (2.5 ml) ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. (2.5 ml) ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. (1.25 ml) ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp. (1.25 ml) ground cloves
  • 1 cup (250 ml) raisins or currants
  • 4 cups (1 L) all-purpose flour

Glaze

  • 2 tbsp. (30 ml) milk
  • 2 tbsp. (30 ml) icing sugar

Preparation

Proof the yeast in the lukewarm water with the teaspoon of sugar.

Mix butter and sugar with scalded milk. Stir to melt butter; let cool.

Add lightly beaten eggs and proofed yeast. Mix the spices with one cup of the flour and incorporate well into the liquid ingredients.

Add enough of the remaining flour to make a soft but not sticky dough. Turn out and knead until smooth. Place in a greased bowl; cover and let rise until double
in size.

Punch down and work in the raisins or currants (if raisins or currants are very dry and hard, they may be plumped by soaking in hot water while the dough is rising; drain and dry before incorporating into the buns).

Divide dough into twelve portions and roll out into flattened rounds. Place side-by-side, just touching on a greased baking sheet. Cover and leave to rise until double in size again. 

On top of each bun, cut a fairly deep cross with a sharp knife.

Let stand for a few minutes until cuts have opened up. Bake 20 minutes at 375°F (190°C). Combine milk and sugar for glaze and boil until syrupy. Brush the buns as soon as they come out of the oven.

Cool on rack and brush twice more with glaze while the buns are still hot. If desired, a cross of white icing (condensed milk and icing sugar stirred until a smooth, runny consistency) may be piped onto the buns after they have cooled.

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