Easter is only a few weeks away and with the country being on lockdown due to the coronavirus, why not stay in and make a batch of hot cross buns? I promise, they’re pretty easy and don’t require a lot of ingredients.
How is the self-isolating going? Family or friends driving you nuts yet? Why don’t you get in the kitchen and make a batch of these hot cross buns up! They are different to the traditional hot cross bun, as they are savoury. A ‘traditional’ hot cross bun is made with mixed dried fruit and spices, where as this one has cheese and bacon – quite the difference, huh?
The flavours are simple, mostly because you can add too many flavours to a bread and it simply ruins it but feel free to add whatever you like to the dough.
There is one thing I wanted to say about this recipe and the next few coming up. They were recorded before the coronavirus really started to impact everyday life and when you could go to the supermarket and buy whatever you needed (hope you panic buyers are happy with what you’ve got). I didn’t want anyone to think I was being insensitive with what I was making, especially now that ingredients are getting harder and harder to find.
Anyway, let’s get started, shall we?
500g Strong bread flour.
50g Fresh yeast.
50g Granulated sugar.
175ml Water, warm.
100g Cheddar cheese.
75g Bacon, cooked and chopped small.
Before you get into making the buns, you’re best to do some prep work. Weigh up all your ingredients, lightly oil a large mixing bowl and get any equipment you may need ready, such as a stand mixer and a spatula.
Into a large mixing bowl, place the flour and salt and give it all a good whisk together, just until the two ingredients are fully incorporated.
Go ahead and add the remaining ingredients, except for the cheese and bacon into the bowl and then start to mix it on a low speed (the second or third lowest is ideal) and mix for 5-6 minutes or until a clear dough forms.
Then you can go ahead and add the cheese and bacon and mix for a further 1-2 minutes, or until they are fairly distributed within the dough.
Flour your work surface with some bread flour and then place the dough on top of it. Give the dough a brief knead, just until the dough is smooth and elastic. Bring it into a ball shape.
You can then transfer the dough into your lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film and leave it somewhere warm to proof for roughly an hour or until doubled in size.
Once the dough has doubled in size, you’ll want to knock the dough back. Start by lightly flouring your work surface with some bread flour and place the dough onto it and press down the dough to remove the gases that have built up in the dough during the first proof.
Now it’s been knocked back, you can bring it back into a ball shape and cover with cling film to prevent a skin forming on the dough.
Take the weight of the dough and divide it by 12, then scale the dough up into 12 equal portions and round the balls of dough up into a smooth and well shaped ball then place onto a lined baking tray.
On the tray, you should be able to place 12 buns easily, stick to using the 3 across by 4 down layout. Leave an equal amount of space between the buns as they will batch while proofing and baking.
Now if the ideal time to preheat your oven to 200˚c/390˚f and to make the cross paste. To make the paste, simple add a small amount of flour into a bowl and add as much water as required. Mixing well in between, make sure the paste is thick enough to hold its shape but is loose enough to pipe easily.
Cover with clingfilm and leave somewhere warm for roughly 45-60 minutes or until they are well risen (if they’re batching, thats a good thing).
Place the hot cross buns into the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes or until well coloured (not like mine, which caught a little due to having a grocery order delivered. I timed it perfectly but the delivery driver came early fgs!).
That’s all for today guys, I hope you enjoyed. If you did, don’t forget to share this recipe with your family and friends and enjoy it. I’ll be back soon with another blog post and YouTube video, so join me then. In the meanwhile, don’t forget to check out my Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The YouTube video will be linked down below.