I love hot cross buns, but I don’t like the store-bought ones full of raisins, and other dried fruit. If you’re like me and don’t like raisins, then these hot cross buns are for you!
These hot cross buns are so soft and fluffy, and deliciously warm from the oven, ready for a spread of butter. I’ve added some of my favourite flavours to make these buns extra special. Spiced with mixed spice (pumpkin pie spice is a great alternative here), cinnamon, and nutmeg, infused with orange juice and orange zest, and stuffed full of melting chocolate chips. All them flavours combined in a warm bun… drools! Did I mention the deliciously warm, sticky orange glaze on top?
Like any bread, these hot cross buns do take some time to prepare. You’ll be spending about 3 hours all together leaving the dough to rise. 2 hours to rise in a well greased bowl, and another hour to rise once again in the baking tray. So make sure you have the time before you start!
These hot cross buns are SO worth the wait though. Enjoy, and Happy Easter!
In a small bowl, add the milk and sugar, and sprinkle the yeast over the top. Leave for 5 - 10 minutes until the mixture is foamy.
Whisk together the flour, mixed spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs (You could also use a food processor). Add the yeast mixture, egg, orange juice, chocolate chips, and orange zest, and mix until a soft dough forms.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place the dough into a large, greased bowl, cover with clingfilm, and leave in a warm place for about 2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.
Using your fist, gently push the air out of the dough, then take out of the bowl and gently knead for a minute. Divide the dough into 12 balls. Place them in a greased 9x13-inch baking tray, cover and leave to rise in a warm place for another hour, or until they are touching and almost doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
For the Flour Crosses
Whisk together the flour and sugar. Stir in the water until smooth. Place into a piping bag, and pipe crosses over the buns.
Bake for 18 - 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.
For the Glaze
Gently warm the sugar and orange juice until the sugar has dissolved. Brush the glaze over the hot buns, and serve warm.
*Pumpkin pie spice is a great alternative to mixed spice.
Leftovers can be stored, covered tightly, in the fridge for up to 1 week. Baked buns also freeze well for up to 3 months. Warm up or toast before serving.