Easter time is fast approaching and there is nothing as delicious as some homemade hot cross buns. Previously we always got store-bought buns but for the past two to three years I have been experimenting with some homemade versions and these are definitely a cut above the ones you find in stores. These fruit-filled hot cross buns are spicy, light and super wholesome.
When I think of hot cross buns, I immediately think of Good Friday, the day we stuffed our faces with buns and pickled fish. We would eat hot cross buns for breakfast, lunch and dinner because according to my late grandmother you were only allowed to eat buns and pickled fish. Here are two interesting facts of why people eat hot cross buns on Good Friday in case you did not know. Hot cross buns are eaten to signify the end of lent and the cross on top represents the crucifixion of Jesus. These days I definitely don’t eat buns at every meal but I do still enjoy them.
With all that being said, let us remember the importance of Easter, which is really about the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a time for us to celebrate what Jesus did for ALL on the cross. He died not only for us but literally took our place on the cross so that we could have eternal life and experience a life of abundance on this earth. Jesus heart for us is to know Him as our Lord and Saviour! Jesus is Alive!
Give this delicious hot cross buns recipe a try and even though it takes a bit of time to make it will be well worth the effort once you taste them. I hope that it will become one of your family favourites at Easter time too.
Here are some pearls of wisdom before beginning:
- A stand mixer was used for this recipe but it can definitely be done by hand. The hand kneading method will need some extra energy, to get to the desired outcome
- The sweet potato can be cooked in a microwave – wash and then prick 2 medium-sized sweet potatoes with a fork. Place into the microwave and cook until soft.
- Milk can be replaced with a dairy-free alternative e.g. Almond Milk
- Wheat Free Alternative: Flour can be replaced at a 1:1 ratio with Spelt Flour but when using Spelt add 2 teaspoons of Xanthan Gum
- Do not add too much flour, the dough must be slightly sticky on the first rise
- If you can’t find Safari Cake Mix you can use a mix of sultanas, raisins and currents to total 250g
- I usually weigh each lump of dough before baking to ensure they are the same size and it also ensures a more even bake
- A stand mixer with a dough hook
- Baking Trays
Hot Cross Buns
Hot Cross Buns
- 10 Grams Active Dry Yeast
- 1 Tablespoon White Sugar
- 1 Cup Lukewarm Milk
- 2 Large Eggs
- 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 Cup Sweet Potato (Cooked & Mashed)
- 75 Grams White Sugar
- 550 Grams All Purpose Flour Plus extra for dusting
- 2 Teaspoons Salt
- 3 Teaspoon Cinnamon (Ground)
- 11/2 Teaspoon Mixed Spice (Ground)
- 250 Grams Safari Cake Mix
- 75 Grams Mixed Citrus Peel
- 70 Grams Flour
- 1/2 Tablespoon White Sugar
- 1/3 Cup Water
- 1/3 Cup Water
- 2 Tablespoons Castor Sugar
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the yeast, 1 Tablespoon sugar and lukewarm milk into a mixing bowl. Stand for 10 minutes until yeast has bubbled and frothed up.
- Add the eggs, oil, sweet potato and sugar and mix until well combined.
- In the meantime sift together the flour, salt and spices.
- Using the dough hook attachment, add in the flour mix one cup at a time until a soft dough forms. Knead for 5 minutes and then add the cake mixture and citrus peel and knead for a further 3 minutes. Dough will be soft and slightly sticky
- Turn onto a lightly floured surface to bring everything together with your hands. (This is a step I like to include)
- Oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl. Cover with a tea towel / clingwrap and place in a warm spot. Allow the dough to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 15 even pieces (average 110 grams per piece - I usually weigh each lump of dough to ensure they are the same size and an even bake) Roll each piece of dough into a smooth ball.
- Arrange the buns on one or two baking trays lined with parchment, leaving a little space for the dough to expand. Allow to rise for a further 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Heat oven to 190℃
- Mix the flour, sugar and water together until a thick paste forms. Allow to stand for 5 minutes. Spoon into a ziplock bag and cut off the tip. Pipe a line along each row of buns and repeat in the opposite direction to create crosses.
- Bake for 15 - 18 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
- While the buns are baking prepare the glaze by heating the castor sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes.
- Brush the glaze over the top of the warm buns and leave to cool
- Store buns in an airtight container and enjoy!