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 Hot Cross Buns

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup of whole milk

2 teaspoons of active dry yeast

340 grams of bread flour

65 grams of granulated sugar

½ teaspoon of kosher salt

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon orange zest

5 tablespoons of room temperature unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon size pieces

1 large whole egg

¾ cup of currants

Sugar Syrup (Recipe Below)

Confectioner’s Icing (Recipe Below)

 METHOD:

Warm the milk to approximately 105 - 110° degrees Fahrenheit and whisk in the yeast.  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer add the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon and orange zest.  Using the paddle attachment mix on low for 10-15 seconds. 

Add the butter and mix on low, 2-3 minutes or until you can no longer see any visible pieces of butter.

Add the milk/yeast mixture and eggs and mix on low until everything is incorrporated.

Switch to the dough hook and mix on medium speed for 4-5 minutes.

Add the currants and mix on low speed for 1 minute or until the currants are evenly dispersed.

Place the dough in a bowl that has been lightly coated with butter.  Cover with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel and let rise about 1 hour or until doubled in volume.

Spray a 13” x 9” pan with non-stick spray and line the bottom of the pan with parchment so the paper extends up the long side and hangs over the edge.  This will allow you to easily remove the buns from the pan.

Once the dough has doubled divide it into 12 pieces.  Roll each piece into a ball and place them in the pan in a 4 x 3 pattern.

Cover the pan with plastic and a kitchen towel and let rise for about 45 minutes or until the rolls are touching.

Bake the buns in a 375° Fahrenheit oven for 15 minutes.  Try not to over bake or the buns will be dry. 

Allow the buns to cool for about 10 minutes and them brush with the cooled sugar syrup.

Let the buns cool completely.

Place the icing in a pastry bag fitted with a Wilton number 47 tip. Pipe a cross on top of each bun.

Sugar Syrup:

½ cup of water

½ cup of sugar

Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil, and then simmer until the mixture is reduced by 1/3.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Icing for Cross:

1 cup of confectioner’s sugar

½ teaspoon of vanilla extract

3-4 teaspoons of milk

In a small bowl whisk together the sugar, vanilla and the milk one teaspoon at a time until the consistency is thick enough so that the icing won’t spread but not so thick that it is hard to pipe.