Hot Cross Buns
50g caster sugar, plus 1 level teaspoon
1 level tablespoon dried yeast
450g plain flour
1 level teaspoon salt
1 rounded teaspoon mixed spice
50g cut mixed peel
40-55ml warmed milk
1 egg, beaten
50g butter, melted
For the glaze:
2 level tablespoons granulated sugar & 2 tablespoons of water
You will need a greased baking sheet.
Stir the teaspoon of caster sugar into 150ml, luke warm water, then sprinkle in the dried yeast and leave it until a frothy head forms.
Sieve the flour, salt and mixed spice into a mixing bowl and add the remaining 50g of sugar, the currants and mixed peel. Make a well in the centre, pour in the yeast mixture plus 40ml of milk, the beaten egg and the melted butter. Mix it to a dough, using a wooden spoon first and then using your hands (add more milk if it needs it).
Transfer the dough on to a clean surface and knead it until it feels smooth and elastic – about 6 minutes. 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 220°C.
Bake the buns for about 15 minutes. While the buns are 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.
Make white icing and place on the cross shape, for a decorative addition.