I have been craving hot cross buns for the past 2 weeks now, and it’s not even Easter yet. I definitely blame overly eager advertising? Christmas over, bring out the Easter eggs.
I wanted something a bit healthier and without that horrendous citrus candied peel. We’re no longer in the 50s. This has taken me a few attempts to get right! There’s nothing sadder than your dough not rising, but I kept strong, redeveloped and created a new one! The idea of making a sweet dough without milk or the eggs was pretty daunting. Make sure your yeast starts happy for a perfect result!
470g strong wholemeal bread flour
30g cocoa powder
2tsp caster sugar
1tsp mixed spice
50g dried figs
1tbsp veg oil
50g dark dairy free chocolate
30g plain flour
1tsp caster sugar
1tsp coffee granules
3tsp warm water
2tsp caster sugar
1. Make your rising mixture- heat 125ml of water to bath temp, add 2tablespoons of the wholemeal flour and the 14g yeast to water and mix. Leave for about ten minutes- the mixture isn’t ready until it starts to ‘grow’ – this happens after 5 minutes rapidly! Ensure the mixture looks like the one on the right when ready! If not make a new batch again.
2. Put the whole meal flour, cocoa powder, caster sugar and spices into a bowl and mix together
3. Dried fruit- cut the figs and dates into raisin sized pieces. Add these to the flour mixture and combine
4. Add the oil to this mixture and the salt in one side of the bowl. Add the yeast mixture once ready to the opposite side of the salt
5. Add an additional 200ml of warm water and Mix with a dough hook speed 3 ish for 10 mins
6. The dough will form together but stay slightly sticky! Once combined kneed for a few minutes by hand to get a feel of the dough
7. Place into a greased bowl and leave in a warm place for just over an hour, the dough should have doubled in size!
8. Beat the dough down knocking all the air out and ADD THE CHOCOLATE. Kneed to distribute and split into 12 even pieces and roll into shapes- place into grease proof paper lined tins- I made do with the shapes I had! Leave again for at least another half an hour, they will have grown to almost double again
10. Put in at gas 5, 200degrees oven for 20mins- check the bottom for a hollow noise, then they’re done!
11. Make the coffee glaze- heat the coffee, water and sugar in a pan until boiling- boil for a few minutes until noticeably thickened- add to the buns straight away!