Hot cross buns are the quintessential Easter bake.
At KNEAD Bakery they only produce them for one month over the Easter period. But we won’t blame you if these become a year-round bake in your home. Simply by not adding the cross, they become the most sensational little tea buns. Even if they are a few days old, you can slice them open, toast them and enjoy with some farmhouse butter, followed by a nap.
We are pleased to be able to share this delicious Loaf recipe from Kris Biggs, Pastry Chef and Baker at KNEAD Bakery.
KNEAD Bakery Hot Cross Bun Loaf served on a John Julian Cake Stand
For the loaf
For the cross mixture
For the glaze
- Place the flour, salt, sugar and butter in a mixing bowl. Rub in the butter to a sandy consistency.
- Mix the yeast and milk together until the yeast has dissolved, then add to the mixing bowl.
- Use your hand or a dough scraper to bring the ingredients together into a rough dough, ensuring it is well mixed and there are no pockets of flour or butter.
- Transfer the dough to the work surface and knead. Hold onto the dough with one hand and use the other hand to stretch and fold for around 5 minutes until the dough is nice and smooth.
- Stretch the dough into a pizza shape and pile the dried fruits and spices in the middle.
- Fold the dough over to cover the fruit, then gently start to roll and fold the dough until the fruits and spices are evenly distributed.
- Place the dough in a bowl, cover with a damp cloth, a plate or a shower cap and leave at room temperature for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
- Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and roll into a loaf shape.
- This recipe will be suited for a 1lb traditional farmhouse loaf tin.
- Cover with a damp cloth and leave at room temperature for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
- While the loaf is proving, make the cross mixture and glaze.
Cross Mixture & Glaze Method
- For the cross mixture, mix together the flour, salt and water until you have a smooth paste, then transfer to a piping bag with a 4-mm (¼-in) plain nozzle.
- For the glaze, combine the sugar, lemon juice and water in a small saucepan, bring to the boil.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C fan (400°F/gas 6).
- Once the loaf has proved, pipe a cross on the top.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack. After 2 minutes, brush with the glaze.