March 22, 2010

Hot Cross Buns! Hot Cross Buns!

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Hot Cross Buns

I joined a new baking group, the Mellow Bakers created by Yumarama Paul and as the name suggests, the baking will be at a more relaxed pace which is just perfect. We will be baking breads from BREAD by Jeffrey Hamelman.

The first bread chosen for the group is Traditional English Hot Cross Buns. Hard to believe but I have never baked nor eaten a hot cross bun, traditional or otherwise. For real.

The recipe is simple and straightforward. Assemble all the ingredients, mix, let rise, shape, bake, and in less than 4 hours you will enjoy munching on delicious, soft, and slightly sweet hot buns studded with currants. The only thing I had a teensy bit problem with was piping the paste on top of the unbaked buns. The paste, made with a combination of flour, oil, and water has a slight slimy consistency and the ends are difficult to break off. It creates a curly tail and sticks to everything making the tips of the crosses untidy. I practiced first on a plate as there was a lot of paste to spare, which I already halved BTW, but as the photo of the baked buns shows, the lines are crooked and the thickness is not uniform. I had to smooth out the curly ends with slightly wet fingertips. It's not a big deal really but next time I'll omit the oil and just mix flour and water until the paste is pipeable. Although I like the syrup for added sweetness, it made everything sticky. I was constantly washing my hands while taking photos and also while eating. I remedied the sticky mess by putting the bun in a 325° F oven to dry out the syrup resulting in a sugar coating that is oh so good. I will surely make these again but with these minor changes; the recipe is a keeper.

Hot Cross Buns Ingredients
I used cute tiny currants and candied lemon peels

Hot Cross Bun Topping
practice did not make perfect crosses

Hot Cross Buns
soft, sweet, fruity, citrusy, and yummy

Come join and bake with us. Click on the Mellow Baker link above or on the left side bar logo. You can view a recipe based on Hamelman's here.


Anne Marie said...

Lovely looking buns Oggi! They look so pretty.

Anonymous said...

I loved the way your burns turned out :D now if only you placed chocolate chips that would be a different story :D

Anonymous said...

The crumb shot is amazing - it made my mouth water!!! These buns look really beautiful!

TNelson said...

These look lovely and delicious! I would love to make some to take to a church breakfast next Sunday. Do you think these need to be eaten warm to be good or could they be made the day before and served at room temperature the next day?

Abby said...

These look awesome! And thanks for all of the advice . . . I'm planning to make mine this afternoon! =) Abby

Yumarama said...

These pics are awesome, Oggi! Nice job on the buns, they look delicious! Can we post the crumb shot in your MellowBakers thread?

TNelson, Hamelman points out that these don't keep terribly well so they're best eaten fresh that day or toasted the next. So you could make them later at night - they really do just take about 4 hours, most of which is proofing. You could therefore start at 6 p.m. and have them done baking at about 10, then they'd still be pretty much same day "fresh" by morning.

Oggi said...

Anne Marie, thanks.:)

Brian, mmm chocolate.:)

AP, thanks. I can't wait to read your post.:)

TNelson, I tried it cold the next day and it's not as good. See Yumarama's comment.:)

Abby, thanks. I'll check out your blog.:)

Paul, sure, post away. Wait, do I add it or do you?:)

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