Hot Cross Buns
Spring cannot be too far off once hot cross buns appear on bakery and supermarket shelves. Ground cloves and nutmeg give these sweet buns their distinct, good flavor.
Yield: 18 buns
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup milk
- ¼ cup butter, room temperature
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 3½ cups bread flour
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 Tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 (0.25-oz) package or 2¼ tsp RED STAR Active Dry Yeast
- ¾ cup dried currants
Powdered Sugar Glaze
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 3 to 4 tsp water (use more/less to achieve desired consistency)
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2-3 Tbsp milk (use more or less to achieve desired consistency)
- ⅛ tsp cinnamon
BREAD MACHINE METHOD
- Have liquid ingredients at 80º F and all other ingredients at room temperature. Place ingredients in pan in the order specified in your owner’s manual. Select dough/manual cycle. Currents can be added 5 minutes before the end of the last kneading. Do not use the delay timer. Take dough out after kneading cycle is complete. Follow Shaping, Rising and Baking directions below. TIP: Check dough consistency after 5 minutes of kneading. The dough should be in a soft, tacky ball. If it is dry and stiff, add water, ½ to 1 TBSP at a time. If it is too wet and sticky, add 1 TBSP of flour at a time. See our Bread Machine section for more helpful tips and information.
- Combine yeast, 1 cup flour, and other dry ingredients, except currants. Combine water and milk; heat to 120º to 130º F.
- Hand-Held Mixer Method
- Combine dry mixture, liquid ingredients, and butter in mixing bowl on low speed. Beat 2 to 3 minutes on medium speed. Add egg; beat 1 minute. By hand, stir in currants and enough remaining flour to make a firm dough. Knead on floured surface 5 to 7 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Add additional flour if necessary. Place dough in lightly oiled bowl and turn to grease top. Cover; let rise until dough tests ripe.
- Stand Mixer Method
- Combine dry mixture, liquid ingredients, and butter in mixing bowl with paddle or beaters for 4 minutes on medium speed. Add egg; beat 1 minute. Gradually add currants and enough remaining flour until dough is firm, knead with dough hook(s) 5 to 7 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place dough in lightly oiled bowl and turn to grease top. Cover; let rise until dough tests ripe.
- Food Processor Method
- Put dry mixture in processing bowl with steel blade. While motor is running, add butter, egg,
- and liquid ingredients. Process until mixed. Continue processing, adding remaining flour until dough forms a ball. Add currants; pulse until just mixed. Place dough in lightly oiled bowl and turn to grease top. Cover; let rise until dough tests ripe.
SHAPING, RISING AND BAKING
- Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; punch down to remove air bubbles. Divide into 3 parts. Divide each third into 6 pieces. Shape each piece into a smooth ball. Place on greased cookie sheet, sides touching. Cover; let rise until indentation remains after touching. Combine 1 egg yolk and 1 tablespoon water; brush buns. Bake in preheated 375º F oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from cookie sheets; cool. Frost with Powdered Sugar Glaze or pipe Icing into shape of a cross on each bun.
- Red Star recipe. Photo by Fake Ginger.
You can substitute Instant (fast-rising) yeast in place of Active Dry yeast. When using Instant yeast, expect your dough to rise faster. Always let your dough rise until ripe. Traditional methods: use equal amounts; Bread Machine: use ½ tsp Instant yeast OR ¾ tsp Active Dry yeast per cup of flour in your recipe. Visit our Lessons in Yeast & Baking for more information on baking.