Hot cross buns


  • 675g (24oz)  White strong flour (higher gluten flour) or Plain Flour
  • 1tsp salt
  • 75g (2 1/2oz) butter
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1tsp ground mixed spice
  • 1/4tsp grated nutmeg
  • 50g (1 1/2oz) Unrefined light muscovado sugar
  • 200g (7oz) mixed dried fruit
  • 25g (4/5oz) candied peel, chopped
  • 1,7g sachet easy-blend yeast
  • 325ml (2/3pt) warm milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 75g (2 1/2oz) plain flour (for the crosses)
  • 4tbsp milk
  • 2tbsp Unrefined golden caster sugar

1. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
2. Stir in the spices, sugar, dried fruit, candied peel and yeast. Make a well in the centre.
3. In another bowl, beat the milk and eggs together and pour into the flour.
4. Mix well to a soft dough then turn out onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 mins until smooth and elastic.
5. Place in an oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave in a warm place for about 45 mins to rise.
6. Turn out the dough and knead again lightly for a few minutes to knock out any air bubbles.
7. Divide into 14 pieces and shape into buns. Place well apart on greased baking sheets, cover loosely with clingfilm and leave in a warm place to prove for 45 mins or until doubled in size.
8. Cut a cross in the top of each bun with a sharp knife.
9. Mix the flour for the crosses with enough water to form a dough and roll out thinly and cut into strips. Dampen the pastry strips and lay them in crosses on top of each bun.
10. Bake for 15-20 mins at 200ºC / 400°F / Gas 6 until golden.
11. Meanwhile heat the ingredients for the glaze in a small pan and simmer for 2 mins until syrupy.
12. Remove the buns from the oven and brush with the glaze while still warm. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
For more recipes by Anton B Dougall, listen to Ta' Kulħadd on RTK 103FM Monday – Friday from 9am to noon.