Easter is not a big celebration in our house.
I’m sure there will be a little chocolate eaten (though I’ve not purchased any aside from choc chips for baking), and probably an Easter treasure hunt with Nanny, but apart from that it is more of a handy break to be able to catch up with family and friends, which is exactly what we’ll be doing this long weekend.
However, there is one Easter tradition we do embrace with open arms, even way back in January when they first appeared in the shops is Hot Cross Buns! YUM!
This year the girls and I were on a mission to make our own, and of the three batches we’ve made so far I’d say we are doing pretty well. We call ours ‘Not Cross Buns’ Or ‘Happy Buns’ since I am too lazy to pipe crosses on them.
The recipe we used is from All Recipes – with a few Pickle Farm modifications as follows.
90ml warm (not hot) water
1 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons (60g) caster sugar
4 tablespoons (80g) butter melted then cooled.
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon of all spice
400g bread flour
1 1/2-2 teaspoons dried active yeast
100g sultanas or mixed dried fruit
Place the warm water, a bit of the sugar and yeast in a container and set aside for ten minutes until yeast is frothy. Then add the milk, lightly beaten egg and butter (make sure it is cooled to just warm) and mix gently.
Into the bread machine bowl add the flour, sugar, salt, spices and fruit (you can add the fruit later if your machine has a special timer bit for that but I never bother), mix.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry and turn on the bread machine to it’s dough setting. I always check after the initial mix just to make sure the dough is the right consistency, sometimes it may need a splash more water.
Let the bread machine mix, knead and rise the dough, then turn it out on a lightly floured surface, knock the air out of it and form into 12-15 buns (depending on how big you want them) then pop them in a greased tin. Leave them to rise again, approx one hour, but my house is never warm enough so I tend to put the oven on low for a bit then turn it off and put the dough in the oven for it’s second rise.
Preheat the oven to 170 and bake for 20-25 minutes. Now the original recipe said 190 but I found our buns got too brown too quickly so I dropped the temp a bit and they were much better but it probably depends on your oven.
1/3 cup of water
2 tbs of sugar
Put the sugar and water in a small saucepan over a low heat and stir till sugar is dissolved then boil for 5 minutes. Let the glaze cool a little then brush over warm buns.
Happy Easter, Passover, spring, autumn or whatever… to all those who celebrate!