Don’t worry about appearances!

 Hello Dear Reader,

These are supposed to be hot cross buns, well, crossless buns! I followed the Delia Smith recipe on line and realised, my oven is hotter than it says it is, that it cooks quicker than Delia’s oven and my flour is drier than hers and needed more milk! Next time, I’ll use a cooler oven, for less time and add more fluids!!!

I don’t ‘do’ Lent, I try to do with as little as I can for most of the time and I try to be good most of the time. However, when you make hot cross buns, you realise what a treat they are. They need butter, sugar, eggs, dried fruit and lots of spice. In times gone by, these would have been hugely expensive and wouldn’t have made it into a breakfast bread roll. Traditionally eaten on Good Friday……………can’t find out why! But after giving up such foods such as eggs and butter (i.e the goodies that go into pancakes on Shrove Tuesday) they must have been a real treat.

My home made sticky buns/hot cross-less buns, are nothing like the pappy air filled rubbish from the supermarket; they taste yeasty, fruity and bready. We ate ours in the morning sun, with some indulgent butter and a mug of tea. A wonderful, if a bit browned and mis-shapen, bank holiday treat.

Here is the recipe and method I used, with thanks to the patron saint of baking, Saint Delia!

Ingredients
 2 oz (50 g) caster sugar, plus 1 level teaspoon
 1 level tablespoon dried yeast
 1 lb (450 g) plain flour
 1 level teaspoon salt
 1 rounded teaspoon mixed spice
 3 oz (75 g) currants
 2 oz (50 g) cut mixed peel
 1½-2 fl oz (40-55 ml) warmed milk
 1 egg, beaten
 2 oz (50 g) butter, melted
For the glaze:
 2 level tablespoons granulated sugar

Method

First stir the teaspoon of caster sugar into 5 fl oz (150 ml) hand-hot water, then sprinkle in the dried yeast and leave it until a good frothy ‘beer’ head forms.

Meanwhile sift the flour, salt and mixed spice into a mixing bowl and add the remaining 2 oz (50 g) of sugar, the currants and mixed peel. Then make a well in the centre, pour in the yeast mixture plus 1½ fl oz (40 ml) of milk (again hand-hot), the beaten egg and the melted butter. Now mix it to a dough, starting with a wooden spoon and finishing with your hands (add a spot more milk if it needs it).

Then transfer the dough on to a clean surface and knead it until it feels smooth and elastic – about 6 minutes. Now pop it back into the bowl, cover the bowl with a lightly oiled plastic bag, and leave it in a warm place to rise – it will take about an hour to double its original size. Then turn it out and knead it again, back down to its original size.

Divide the mixture into 12 round portions, arrange them on the greased baking sheet (allowing plenty of room for expansion), and make a deep cross on each one with a sharp knife. Leave them to rise once more, covering again with the oiled polythene bag, for about 25 minutes. Meanwhile pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7, 425°F (220°C).

Bake the buns for about 15 minutes. Then, while they’re cooking, melt the sugar and 2 tablespoons of water for the glaze over a gentle heat and brush the buns with it as soon as they come out of the oven, to make them nice and sticky.

Mine needed a lot longer to rise, should have had less time in the oven, and could have done with a lot more fluid! Other than that I think they turned out OK. As I said, don’t worry about appearances, just enjoy the treat.

Until tomorrow,

Love Froogs

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11 thoughts on “Don’t worry about appearances!

  1. They look lush Froogs.

    They are eaten by Christians as they symbolise the cross, however as they pre date christianity they were thought to have been made by the saxons in in honour of the goddess Eostre (the cross is thought to have symbolised the four quarters of the moon)

    It is also said (Superstition) That if you share a hot cross bun with some one on this day you will ensure your friendship through out the coming year.

    X x

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  2. Hi -please may I, lent, buns, etc are a catholic tradition, I'll stick to biblical christianity and no where does it mention buns, eggs, bunnies, trees, or wrapping paper………..i like to keep it simple xxxx

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  3. Hi please may I…….you didn't offend me in the slightest vive la difference xxxxx I don't usually succumb to gregorian traditions, so I don't celebrate christmas, easter or anything that isn't mentioned in the bible but I accept all beliefs, how ever they are followed xxxx much love Froogsxxx

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  4. Yeah, crossless hot cross bubs, our loval Asda had a trolley full of them, selling off at 25% off, somebody forgot to put the crosses on. Still too expensive for me, but they were selling fast.

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  5. I love your rustic looking 'cross less buns'.

    I bet they are really tasty and filling, much more so than the stodgy, doughy air filled supermarket versions.

    Happy Easter

    Sue xx

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  6. I made something very similar the first time this year! We ate ours for Easter breakfast. They were good, but I'm going to look for a different recipe next year, a little less rich. Mine didn't have enough spice in to suit me, either.

    I tried to make crosses on top with lemon juice mixed with powdered sugar, but it wasn't thick enough and ended up just glazing the buns – which was tasty too!

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