In accordance with my minor obsession with all things British, I’ve wanted to make hot cross buns for a long time, as part of our Lenten celebration. The problem is, I could never find a good recipe for my bread machine. I did find some on various recipe sites, but none of them had very good reviews, so I decided to make up my own. I adapted a traditional recipe that I found in a library cookbook, and baked the buns in round pans, like cinnamon rolls. They turned out great, and the recipe made enough that I was able to freeze half for our Easter Sunday breakfast.
Here is my personal recipe, if you would like to try it.
1 cup skim milk, warmed to 110 degrees
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 package)
1/4 cup butter or stick margarine, melted
2 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons warm water
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup raisins, currants, or other dried fruit of your choice
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons cold water
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4-6 teaspoons milk
1. In bread machine pan, combine warm milk, sugar and yeast. Let stand 5-10 minutes until bubbly. Stir in melted butter, beaten eggs, and 2 tablespoons warm water. Add dry ingredients in order given.
2. Set bread machine to dough cycle. When cycle is complete, turn dough out onto lightly floured surface (it will be very sticky). With a sharp knife, divide into four equal parts. Divide each part into four pieces, to make sixteen buns. (I use dental floss or string for this part – it’s much easier).
3. Spray (2) 9-inch, round baking pans with cooking spray, and place 8 rolls in each pan, sides touching. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise 30 minutes, until doubled in size.
3. Beat egg yolk and 2 tablespoons cold water; brush over buns. Bake in preheated, 375-degree oven for 18-22 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool completely on wire racks.
4. Combine icing ingredients, adding water 1 teaspoon at a time to achieve desired consistency. Pipe crosses onto buns using pastry bag, or Ziploc bag with one corner snipped.