English hot cross buns used to be forbidden the rest of the year and only eaten during Easter, Christmas, and burials, but now you can learn to make them whenever you wish! These delicious spiceful buns are studded with raisins and decorated with the a cross on top as a symbol of the crucifixion and to commemorate Christ’s suffering on the cross.
According to English folklore, hot cross buns stay fresh for a whole year (no way they’d last that long tho. They are too good!), protect sailors from shipwrecks, heals the ill, and make friendships last forever 🙂 so definitely try making these this Easter!
Some people add the cross and bake it too, some adds it on after baking more like a glaze. The batter for the baked version is just flour and water, the glazed afterwards batter is like a cookie frosting, its powdered sugar, water/milk. I think the former looks more sophisticated and I prefer the taste. Also, I used my bread machine to knead and rise my dough, but in my recipe I included instructions for using a stand mixer (or you can do it by hand, of course)
- ¾ cup warm whole milk
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup white sugar
- ⅜ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 egg white
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup raisins
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons water
- Sprinkle yeast in warm milk to allow activation. Let stand 10-15 minutes until it is frothy and aromatic.
- Into your stand mixer bowl with the dough hook attached, add sugar, salt, egg, softened butter and half of the flour.
- Once incorporated, add in the rest of the flour and raisins.
- Knead the dough in your mixer for 5 minutes on low until dough becomes a smooth and elastic dough ball
- Lightly grease a large bowl with oil and slightly grease the dough ball also. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and let it rise for 1hour in a warm draft-free space until dough has risen to double its volume.
- Once the dough has doubled, punch the air out and divide it into 9 equal dough balls (100g each)
- Roll them each into a small ball and put in a slightly greased 9 x 9 baking pan
- Let the dough rise for 1hour in a warm draft-free environment
- Preheat oven to 375F, lightly brush the dough with egg wash. Bake for about 18-20 minutes until top is golden yellow