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Sweet Treats & a Recipe for Spiced Hot Cross Buns

Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish

I know, guys. I now have three recipes on this site for Hot Cross Buns. But these ones are different. They’re special. They get me.

Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish

Or, rather, they are so damn tasty that it takes a ton of effort on my part not to eat them all in one sitting, so… don’t judge.

Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish

It is that time of year after all, the time that induces mass consumption of sweet treats – it’s a fact. So get your buns in the kitchen {sorry, it had to be said} and bake some of these Spiced Hot Cross Buns up.

Don’t forget to wrap up a bunch to give away. Even if it is just to stop yourself from eating them all.

Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish
Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish
Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish

Spiced Hot Cross Buns
Makes 15-16

Ingredients:
FOR THE BUNS
1 ½ cups lukewarm 2% milk
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup butter, melted
2 large eggs
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 – 5 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon fast-rising/instant yeast
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
½ cup dried currants
½ cup raisins
¼ cup dried cranberries
Zest of ½ an orange
1 tablespoon dark rum

FOR THE CRISS-CROSS BIT
¼ cup all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon honey

TO FINISH
1 tablespoon honey

Instructions:
1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk milk, sugar, and butter together. The heat from the melted butter should make the milk nice and warm, but not hot to the touch. Whisk in the eggs and vanilla, and set aside.

2. In a large bowl (fit to a stand mixer, if desired), whisk 4 cups of the flour with the yeast, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Pour in the liquid ingredients and turn the mixer on (with a dough hook attached) low speed. Alternately, mix it up as much as you can with a wooden spoon, and then turn the dough out onto a clean surface and mix it with your hands. Add more flour, as needed (a tablespoon at a time), and continue to mix or knead until you have a soft, elastic dough.

3. Place the currants, raisins, cranberries, zest, and rum in a small bowl. Mix, and let it sit for a few minutes.

4. Flatten the ball of dough a bit, and then pour the dried fruit mixture on top; fold the dough over itself, then stretch it out, fold it, and repeat until the fruit is incorporated well into the dough. Form it into a ball again, and then place it in a large, oiled bowl. Toss the ball around a bit so it is covered in oil, and then cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Place it in a warm spot (I like to put it in the oven with the light on!), and let it rise for one hour.

5. Punch the dough down and divide it into 15 or 16 equal-sized balls of dough. Place them in a large, parchment-lined rectangular cake pan (or divide them among a few baking dishes), place in the oven again with the light on, and cover with a large tea towel. Place a bowl of boiling water in the bottom of the oven to ensure the dough doesn’t get dry, and let rise for another 30 minutes.

6. While the dough is rising, make the paste for the crosses: whisk the flour, water, and honey together until smooth, and then transfer the mixture to a pastry bag or Ziploc bag with a small bit of the corner cut off.

7. Remove the dough from the oven, and preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Pipe the paste over the dough in a criss-cross shape once the oven is preheated, and then put the baking pan(s) back in. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the buns are golden brown.

8. When you take the buns out, put the remaining tablespoon of honey in the microwave for 5-10 seconds, just until it’s nice and runny. Brush it over the buns, and then transfer the pan(s) to a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before removing from the pan(s) and store in an airtight container for about 3 days – not that they’ll last that long.

Spiced Hot Cross Buns - Stephanie Arsenault - Global Dish

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