This time of year is just wrong without Hot Cross Buns. I eagerly await the criss crossed beauties appearing in the shops, and very year there’s a new variety to tempt and inspire. These days I wouldn’t buy a Hot Cross bun as I’ve not found any safe ones (I know vegan versions exist but they’re generally not free-from enough for us) and so come March I make batch after batch of buns. I’d really recommend giving it a go, they’re not hard to make and the satisfaction of a house filled with a spicy aroma and perfect buns appearing from the oven is second to none!
I’ve made many friendly hot cross buns and they’ve become a firm favourite, so much so that Little S has them for breakfast if she gets the chance. For some reason my children have an aversion to dried fruit, so I concocted this variation that appeals more to them.
The addition of chopped chocolate may be slightly unconventional, but the resulting buns are delightfully aromatic and tasty with the bonus prize of the chocolate going oozy and gooey when the buns are toasted. The added bonus is that they freeze beautifully. Simply defrost and then warm in an oven or toaster, and enjoy perfect hot cross buns anytime 🙂
Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns
(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)
500g strong bread flour
1 tbsp dried yeast
3 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 or 2 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp cinnamon
500ml warm dairy-free milk
2 tbsps melted dairy-free margarine
100g dairy-free chocolate, chopped
for the crosses:
2 tbsp flour
3 tbsp water
for the glaze:
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp water
- In a large bowl mix together the flour, yeast, sugar, salt and spices. Make a well in the centre and pour in the dairy-free milk and dairy-free margarine, bring together to form a dough (adding more flour if too wet, or more liquid if too dry)
- Knead for about 5 mins until the dough is smooth
- Place in a bowl and cover, leave in a warm place to double in size
- Knock back, knead again and then form into 9-12 even sized balls. Place well spaced on a baking sheet lined with grease proof paper
- Leave to rise again for 10-20 minutes
- Mix together the water and flour to make a paste and pipe onto the top of the buns in crosses
- Bake at 190 degrees/Gas Mark 5 for 20 minutes until risen and the buns sound hollow
- Make the glaze by dissolving the sugar in the water and boiling briefly. Brush over the hot buns.
- Leave to cool on a wire rack.
- These buns are best kept loosely covered or the glaze will make them go a bit soggy.