Do you remember that nursery rhyme? It's worth more than a penny during this lockdown time. It brings back memories of the best hot cross bun you've ever had! With Easter right around the corner, I can think of a hundred recipes that are an Easter speciality. From easter eggs, ham, roasted lamb or chicken, carrot cake, quiche Lorraine, galette and many more. What am I missing here? The most underrated but delicious, Hot Cross Buns that were once reserved only for Good Fridays! But, now you can find them in almost all the bakeries around the city on most days!
I'm sure you've seen a hot cross bun in your life but just didn't know what it was called. It is a bun that has a cross on it, having a distinct identification mark. The traditional hot cross bun recipe is a yeast-proofed sweet bun that is lightly spiced with cinnamon & nutmeg. It is then speckled with raisins or currants with a top etched, forming a cross with either icing or strands of dough.
In Christian households, it is believed that making hot cross bun on Good Friday brings luck & wands off evil. In Mumbai churches, hot cross buns are distributed amongst parishioners after the Good Friday mass. These orders are placed very well in advance at bakeries selling hot cross buns. However, this year it'll be a different story. I've seen most Catholics enjoy a hot cross bun from a nearby bakery even at home because baking bread isn't an easy task. But, this year time is a leisure & there's no excuse to not bake these beauties!
So, if you're planning or in the mood to bake some hot cross buns for Easter this year, (lockdown has a positive side too, you know!), here's a recipe for you!
450 gms Maida
240 ml Milk
70gms Butter/ Oil
75 gms Raisins/Currants
2 tsp Yeast
55 gms Sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon Powder
1/2 tsp Nutmeg Powder
1 1/2 tsp Salt
For the egg wash:
1 Tbsp Water or Milk
For the crosses:
60 gms Maida
10 gms Sugar
60 ml Water
For the glaze:
60 gms Icing Sugar
1 tbsp Milk
1 tsp Vanilla Essence
How to make Hot Cross Buns from scratch:
1. In a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients together- flour, yeast, sugar, cinnamon powder, nutmeg powder & salt.
2. In another bowl, combine all the wet ingredients-milk, butter/oil & eggs.
3. Now pour the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients.
4. Add raisins & mix well until the dough is formed.
5. Now proof the dough in a greased bowl for 2 hours, covering it with a cling film.
6. When the dough doubles, knead it once more and divide the dough in equal parts.
7. Place the round balls on a baking tray, equidistant from each other.
8. Proof the buns again for another hour, at room temperature.
9. Before baking, make the egg wash with eggs & water or milk. Brush it on the buns, coating it lightly.
10. Now it's the cross time! Whisk flour, sugar & water into a paste.
11. Transfer the mixture in a piping bag and make a cross on each bun with the mixture.
12. Now put the bun tray in the preheated oven (200 degrees) for about 15-18 minutes.
13. Remove form oven after the buns have a nice, brown top & let it cool.
14. For the glaze, mix sugar, vanilla extract & milk until a glaze comes together.
15. Now pipe the buns however you like. And, it's ready to eat and serve!
Wishing you all a peaceful Good Friday & a Happy Easter! And, even if you don't celebrate Easter, this is one bun recipe that you can always make because it tastes delicious with chai!
Think of her as a delicacy. She could be a red sauce penne pasta or refreshing strawberry smoothie. A little sweet, quite tangy and unapologetic on the palate. Her soul is that of a gastronome, mind of an illustrator and heart of a writer. She uses these ingredients to plate up tasty stories about food at India Food Network as an Associate Editor. Be it her blogs, articles, reviews or food shows; she promises a wholesome affair.