Fellow foodies, Easter isn’t quite fully observed if you’re not enjoy hot cross buns – the ones that are crusty brown on top and are decorated with a thick, chewy cross on them.
However, hot cross buns aren’t always available at every neighborhood supermarket with easy reach – at least not the traditional ones.
These however contain buttermilk, a Southern favorite and worth a try at least once. But the flour cross must go on instead of the piped on icing cross just to keep it traditional. If you’ve got the time and patience, try these for Easter Sunday…
1 quarter ounce packet of active dry yeast
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup raisins
Flour cross paste:
1/3 cup plain flour
4 to 5 tablespoons water
1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons caster sugar
Place water into a large mixing bowl and add in the yeast over the top, allowing about five minutes to dissolve the yeast.
Stir in the buttermilk, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and butter. Mix in one cup of flour until well blended, then stir in the raisins. Gradually add the remaining flour, mixing until the dough is stiff enough to take out of the bowl and knead onto a floured surface.
Knead the dough until smooth and elastic, for about 5 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and cover with a towel. Allow the dough to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, which should take about one hour.
Move the dough onto a floured surface and divide into 18 pieces, shaping each piece into a ball to be placed in a greased 9x13 inch baking dish.
Cover buns loosely with a towel and allow to rise again until a finger leaves an impression when you poke the dough gently, which will take about 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Centigrade) and make the flour paste for the crosses.
Mix flour and water together in a small bowl until smooth, adjusting the water accordingly if required. Spoon the mixture into a small plastic bag and snip off one corner of bag.
Pipe the flour paste over the top of the buns to form thick crosses and bake buns for 20 to 25 minutes, or until buns are cooked through.
To prepare the sugar glaze place water and sugar into a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and allow to boil for another 5 minutes till it coats the back of a spoon visibly. Brush the warm glaze over warm hot cross buns. Happy Easter!