this year, the powers-that-be have outdone themselves lobotomising the nation by making some royal bloke marry some upper-middle class commoner (there’s an oxymoron if ever there was one…) and thought that if they plan the wedding for the week after Easter and give us all the day off, creating some kind of 12 days of mind-numbing madness, we just might forget that we’re still in the middle of one of the worst recessions in world history… and we won’t notice the fact that there’s billions being spent on a party that none of us can go to…
… quite literally the words ‘let them eat cake’ have never rang so true…
dont get me wrong, I will be spending the next week with my feet well and truly up, enjoying the chance to re-charge and spend time in the kitchen and I think i’m going to try out a few recipes i’ve never made before, starting with these Hot Cross Buns…
… in the meantime I have been asked to go in and talk about my blog on BBC Radio Lincolnshire, which I am doing tomorrow morning (Thursday) at 10am. You can listen to me live over the internet if you go here or listen again all week if you miss it, on the BBC iPlayer… I will be taking my buns in to feed them!
625g strong white bread flour
1 tsp salt
2tsp ground mixed spice
45g unsalted butter
zest of 1 lemon
11/2 tsp fast action dried yeast
1 large egg
10fl oz tepid milk
4oz dried fruit
For the cross:
2tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp golden syrup or honey – heated
– mix the flour, salt and mixed spice in a large bowl, rub the butter in, then add the sugar, lemon zest and yeast.
– beat the egg, add it to the tepid milk (microwave) and then add this to the flour mixture, bring it all together to form a soft, pliable dough
– turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly, sprinkling the mixed fruit in to the dough in batches, work for 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
– place the dough in a large oiled bowl, cover with a tea towel and put it somewhere warm for one hour to prove
– after an hour, knock back the dough, knead for a minute or two and then back into the bowl and warm place for a further 30 minutes.
– once it’s doubled in size, turn it out onto a floured surface and divide into 12, roll into balls, flatten slightly into a bun shape and place these on a lined baking tray
– get a large plastic bag and place the buns and tray into the bag, tie the end so no air can get in and leave them to rise once more for a further 40 minutes.
– pre-heat the oven to 240c
– now make the topping by combining the water and flour until you have a thick paste
– once the buns are ready, pour the topping into a piping bag and pie crosses onto each bun and then bake for 8-12 minutes until dark golden.
– the moment they are out of the oven, brush them wit the golden syrup which you have heated gently in the microwave.
eat and of course, enjoy!