I started this blog so my daughters could find all of our family favourite recipes in one place. It has actually grown into more than just the family favourites but also other recipes we've tried out in our kitchen. I don't like to fill up the post with alot of chatter. Sometimes there's a little story to tell, but usually I like to get right to the point. So this is for them, but hope you find some recipes that you like as well. I'll be sharing a lot of recipes, and along the way you'll find some crafty things and maybe some helpful hints too! Welcome!

Friday, April 10, 2020

Hot Cross Buns

I always look forward to Hot Cross Buns at Easter time and this is the first time I have ever made them myself. But really these spicy little buns can be made anytime of the year.  Change up the raisins if you have to (my daughters don't like them) but I think juicy raisins really are the best!
2 1/4 tsps yeast
3 tbsps warm water (105 - 115°F)
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1 egg
3 3/4 cup flour
1 cup raisins (candied fruit, dried cranberries, chopped dates)
1 tsp flour
1 tbsp orange or lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp each cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice

Flour paste:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup water
2 tbsps sugar

2 tbsps warm milk
2 tbsps sugar

In a large mixing bowl sprinkle yeast over warm water. Stand for 5-10 minutes.

Microwave the milk, butter, sugar and salt 1 - 1 1/2 minutes just to melt the butter. Cool slightly.
Whisk a tablespoon or two of the warm mixture into the egg then whisk egg and milk mixture together. Make sure the milk is cool enough as to not cook the egg! Now add the yeast. 

Combine 3 1/2 cups flour, spices and zest then add to the wet ingredients in 2 or 3 additions. Mix on medium speed until the dough comes away from the bowl. Add the remaining 1/4 cup flour only if needed.
Toss the raisins (or in this case dates) with 1 tsp flour and add to the dough. 
Knead or use dough hook on mixer for about 5 minutes. Preheat oven to 180°F then turn it off. This makes for a nice warm draft-free place to proof the dough. Form it into a ball and sit in a greased bowl. Cover with a dish towel and leave it in the oven for 2 hours.
Once it has risen up like this ↓ punch down the middle.
Then divide into 12 even(ish) pieces.
Gently tuck any corners under to form a ball and place in a greased 13 X 9" baking dish.
Ok, here's where it got a little tricky...the flour paste.
Mix 1 cup flour with 1/2 cup water and 2 tbsps sugar. I wasn't sure what consistency the paste needed to be, but I knew it had to be kind of thick to keep it's shape once on the buns. So this is how I started  out but it was a little too thick and I had to add a couple tbsps more of water.
Once you are happy with your flour paste scoop it into a piping bag and make the crosses on the buns. Cover and let rise another 20 minutes.

At this point the buns may be refrigerated for up to 24 hours, but I baked these ones right away.
Bake at 350°F for 22-25 minutes.
Mix warm milk and sugar together and brush the glaze on while the buns are still warm.
It's such a simple glaze but it's gorgeous!
Happy Easter!

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