Monday, 2 April 2012


Ooh, there's nothing like warm hot cross buns straight from the oven with lots of butter slathered on top so it's all lovely and melty.  Easter seems to give us loads of baking opportunities but this is my favourite.  I've thrown caution to the wind here and messed with a classic recipe but I think it really works.  My inspiration came from Natural Selection Foods and their cinnamon cranberries, they are the perfect addition and you could try them for yourself if you enter my giveaway.  The winner will be chosen on Thursday 5th April

The lovely people from Natural Selection are offering 1 lucky winner an extremely generous hamper of baking goodies that will keep you very busy.  You can also 'like' their face book page and print a £1.00 Off voucher to spend at Asda or Sainsbury's.

The hamper includes:

3 Packs Chopped Apricots
3 Packs Dried Cranberries
3 Packs 5 Fruit Mix
3 Packs Crystallised Ginger
3 Packs Cinnamon Cranberries
3 Packs Chopped Dates
2 Packs Crimson Raisins
A Natural Selection Apron
A Rolling Pin
And A Copy of The Great British Bake Off How To Bake Book


All you have to do is :             a) Leave a message on this post
                                                           b) Spread the word on Face Book & Twitter
                                                                c) 'Like' Natural Selection Foods on Face Book


500g Bread Flour                                              CROSSES 
15g Yeast                                                            2 tbsp Plain Flour
60g Butter                                                         1 tbsp Sugar
40g Sugar                                                          Water to Mix
10g Salt                                                              
1tsp Cinnamon                                                     GLAZE
1/2tsp Nutmeg                                                     1 tbsp Sugar
1/2tsp Cardamom                                                 1 tbsp Water
100g Cinnamon Cranberries                     
250ml Warm Milk
2 Eggs
1 tsp Orange Extract

Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and rub in the butter and fresh yeast if your using it.  Now add the warm milk, orange extract and eggs.  Because it is such a sticky dough I start it off in my freestanding mixer using the dough hook.  When it has all come together tip it onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 8-10 minutes.  If it sticks to the surface dust your hands with flour till it stops.
It's important that you don't add too much flour so dusting your hands rather than the surface will reduce this.  Remember, the softer your dough, the softer your buns will be - ooh err misses.

Return the dough to a floured bowl and cover with cling film or, GENIUS TIP ALERT! A disposable shower cap - the one's you get free from hotels.

Leave the dough to rise in a warm place for 1 hour then remove it from the bowl, divide it into 12 pieces and shape into buns.  Put them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment, cover with a clean t-towel and leave in a warm place for another hour.

Your buns should be lovely and plump now so mix the batter for the crosses.  You want it pipeable but not so runny it just slides off your buns.  First brush each one with egg wash then pipe on the crosses.  Bake them at 220C for 15-20 minutes.  Keep an eye on them though as sweet bread tends to burn quite easily.

While they are baking warm the sugar and water till the sugar melts.  As soon as they come out of the oven brush the tops with the glaze to give them a gorgeous sticky shine.



  1. I really need to get my skates on with making hot cross buns this year, but I do love them!
    The hamper looks like a great prize, can I enter in just one way, here on the blog, or do I need to enter a) b) and c) to be put into the draw?

  2. Great giveaway.

    I tried Hot Cross Buns for the first time at the weekend and they were terrible! I think it was the curse of the BBC recipe once again, might give your a go this weekend and hope for the best! xx

  3. Kavey, you need to 'like' Natural Selection on Face Bookif you can x

  4. Those hot cross buns look great! Tweet sent (from @comedinewitrach) and liked on Facebook.

  5. Ooh I hope I can find time to make hot cross buns this week...! Lovely giveaway :)
    Helen x

  6. I would like to enter the give away please :-) I have liked on FB and tweeted. thanks

  7. I would love to enter your giveaway please if I may. I have shared it on Facebook & had already liked Natural Selection earlier. Thanks - can't wait to try those yummy-sounding hot cross buns!

  8. Having stuck lucky once, I'm not averse to trying again! Would love to win all those goodies.

    Your hot cross buns looks lovely - I haven't made any for years.

  9. Your hot cross buns look great! Is this giveaway only open for UK residents? I live in the US, am I still eligible?

  10. Shumaila - everyone is eligible thanks for entering x

  11. I have tweeted and liked and now hopefully entered too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. Well,what a lovely giveaway!I'm off to spread the word on twitter and like FB page,unless the deadline has gone!

  13. CONGRATULATIONS to Helen from Creative Chaos Art who was randomly selected to win the Natural Selection Foods Hamper.

  14. Oh Damn, Soo Should Have Entered!!