by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez / Monday, March 25, 2013
Hot Cross Cinnamon Buns
It is that that for most of time, bakers have marked their buns, breads, and other baked goods with a cross to ward off the evils spirits (this gives them an escape) that could cause the bread to go stale or moldy.
Hot Cross Buns were often studded with dried fruit and warming spices such as cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and nutmeg. Some even believed in their healing properties. When made at home, one from each batch would be allowed to dry - this bun was considered good luck and hung in the kitchen for 12 months. It was believed to ward of fire, but could also be grated and sprinkled into medicine to ward off disease.
recipewise: The History of the Hot Cross Bun.
I have a favorite Hot Cross Bun recipe that I make yearly... and not just on what is the "traditional" day to make a batch, Good Friday. I've never actually dried one out and kept it in my kitchen, but I may give that a try this year. A little good luck could never hurt.
While I love those buns, I did want to give them a little twist. So, I adapted the recipe and turned it around a bit...keeping the dried fruit in the dough, but taking those warming spices out of the dough and making it into a filling...and turning them into a cinnamon bun! The fat "cross" of frosting that finishes them is the perfect amount of sweetness to contrast the tender, hearty bun. And hopefully combines with those twists to let out the evil spirits.
- 2 c. (250g) white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
- 2 c. (250g) unbleached all-purpose flour
- ½ c. warm water
- ½ c. warm milk
- 2¼ tsp. (7g) instant yeast
- 2 tsp. (10g) fine sea salt
- 3½ Tbs. (50g) sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 3½ Tbs. (50g) butter, at room temperature
- ⅔ c. (100g) mix of dried fruit (raisins, currants, cherries, cranberries)
- finely grated zest of an orange
- 2 Tbs. (1 oz. / 28g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 c. (210g) packed brown sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp. ground allspice
- pinch fine sea salt
- 2 Tbs. (1 oz. / 28 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 c. (4.5 oz. / 126 g) powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 Tbs. buttermilk
- tiny splash of pure vanilla extract
- pinch fine sea salt
I am sharing this post with:
Michiana-based food, drink, and travel writer with a fondness for garlic, freshly baked bread, stinky cheese, single malt Scotch, and Mexican food—who believes that immersing herself in different cultures one bite at a time is the best path to enlightenment.