With the Easter holiday fast approaching, The Sphinx have put together a roundup of all the best recipes and products for all things hot cross buns! Traditionally, the sweet buns are eaten on Good Friday but the sweet treat has become a household favourite all year round, as they can be eaten as a snack, at breakfast or whenever you fancy.
1. Hot Cross Bun Ice Cream
As the weather starts to feel more like spring, why not indulge in a summer favourite with an Easter twist? Lidl are selling their own ‘Deluxe Hot Cross Bun Dairy Ice Cream’ as part of their new collection. Priced at £1.99, this ice cream will make the perfect dessert this Easter.
2. Hot Cross Gin
Calling all gin fans! A new flavour has hit the market from the online retailer Gin Tales, as they have infused 37.5% vol. London dry gin with fresh citrus fruits, sultanas, cinnamon and nutmeg. Available to buy via their website for £33 at http://www.gintales.com/shop/the-tale-of-spring-hot-cross-gin
3. Hot Cross Bun Sundae
Layers of vanilla custard, lemon compote, whipped cream and pieces of hot cross bun make this dessert from Morrisons a crowd pleaser. You can pick up the individual pots in store now for £1.25.
4. Salted Caramel Hot Cross Buns
Marks and Spencer has seriously upped its hot cross bun game this year with their collection of new flavours such as salted caramel and chocolate buns. Packs of four are available to buy in store for £1.70.
5. Traditional Hot Cross Bun Recipe
Inspired by Paul Hollywood’s recipe, these buns contain the spicy, sweet and fruity elements all of which are required to make the perfect Easter treat.
Ingredients: For the buns; 300ml milk plus 2 tbsp more, 50g butter, 500g strong bread flour, 1 tsp salt, 75g caster sugar, 1 tbsp sunflower oil, 7g sachet fast-action or easy-blend yeast, 1 egg, 75g sultana, 50g mixed peel, zest 1 orange, 1 apple peeled, cored and finely chopped and 1 tsp ground cinnamon. For the cross; 75g plain flour, plus extra for dusting. For the glaze; 3 tbsp apricot jam.
• Bring the milk to the boil, then remove from the heat, add the butter and then leave to cool. Put the flour, salt, sugar and yeast into a bowl. Make a well in the centre. Pour in the warm milk and butter mixture, then add the egg. Using a wooden spoon mix well and then bring everything together with your hands until you have a sticky dough.
• Tip onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for about 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.
• With the dough still in the bowl, tip in the sultanas, mixed peel, orange zest, apple and cinnamon. Knead into the dough, making sure everything is well distributed. Again leave to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
• Divide the dough into 15 even pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball on a lightly floured work surface. Arrange the buns on one or two baking trays lined with parchment, leaving enough space for the dough to expand. Cover with more oiled cling film or a clean tea towel, then set aside to prove for 1 hour more.
• Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Mix the flour with approximately 5 tbsp water to make the paste for the cross – add the water 1 tbsp at a time, so you add just enough for a thick paste. Spoon into a piping bag with a small nozzle. Pipe a line along each row of buns, then repeat in the other direction to create crosses. Bake for 20 minutes on the middle shelf of the oven until golden brown.
• Gently heat the apricot jam to melt then sieve to get rid of any small bits. While the jam is still warm brush over the top of the warm buns and leave to cool.
6. Hot Cross Bun and Butter Pudding
A twist on the famous bread and butter pudding, by substituting the standard bread/brioche with hot cross buns adds the Easter feel to the much loved desert.
Ingredients: 300ml pot double cream, 600ml milk, 4 egg, 100g golden caster sugar, 1½ tsp vanilla essence, 8 hot cross buns, 40g soft butter, 100g marzipan cubed, 3 tbsp chunky marmalade and icing sugar for dusting.
• Heat oven to 170C/150C fan/gas 3. Warm the cream and milk in a pan over a gentle heat. Whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla together with a fork in a large bowl then gradually add the warm cream mixture.
• Halve the buns and spread with the butter. Arrange in a large shallow ovenproof dish (approx 25 x 32cm) dot with the marzipan and brush the marmalade on top.
• Pour over the cream mixture and set aside to soak for 15 minutes. Press the buns down into the custard mixture as they soften.
• Bake for 50 minutes until set then remove and allow to stand for 10 minutes. Dust lightly with icing sugar and serve while still warm.
Featured Image: https://www.sbs.com.au/food/recipes/fruity-hot-cross-buns