These traditional Easter buns are very common during Easter time, especially on Good Friday, although now very often you can find them in supermarkets all year through - that’s how good they are! And for this reason, I’ve decided to share the recipe even though Easter has passed already. The buns are sweet, fluffy, full of raisins and have that typical cross on top.
This classic recipe may be adjusted to one’s preference: you may want to substitute the spices to any others you like as well as raisins may be changed for any other dried fruit. You will never get it wrong! 🙂
This recipe makes 12-18 buns:
- 7 g active dry yeast
- 110 g castor sugar
- 375 ml lukewarm milk
- 650-700 g all-purpose flour
- 2 t five spice*
- 2 t cinnamon
- 50 g unsalted butter, melted
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 240 g raisins or sultanas (or mixture of both)
- 55 g candied fruit or peel (optional)
[* 5 spice mix may be made at home:
- 1-2 star anise
- 1 t ground ginger
- 1 T fennel seeds
- 1/2 T ground cinnamon
- 1 T Sichuan peppercorns (may be substituted for 1/2 T peppercorns + 2 t coriander seeds + zest from 2/3 lemon (only yellow part))
Grind all well in a mortar.
Or, you may want to substitute these spices to mixture of your favourite ones (in various proportions), e.g. ground cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamons etc. ]
In a bowl, mix 2 t sugar, the milk and yeast and set aside for 5-10 min until the yeast is active.
In a big bowl, mix the remaining sugar, 650 g of flour, spices, melted butter, egg, raisins/sultanas and candied fruit/peel (if using any). When milk mixture is bubbly, pour it over the flour mixture and start kneading. If the dough turns to be very sticky, start adding more flour, 1 T at a time, continue kneading until dough is smooth and not sticky, about 10 min.
Lightly oil the bowl, place the dough in, cover the bowl with cling film and leve to rise at room temperature, for 1-2 hrs, until doubled in size.
Gently punch the dough, divide into equal parts. I divided mine into 12 parts, each was ~130 g resulting in having quite big buns. Shape the buns, place them in a lightly oiled tray or large pan, leaving a little space between them. I placed my buns quite close to each other so during baking they would stick together. If you want yours to stay intact, leave more space between them when you place them on the tray. Cover the tray with cling film and leave the buns to rise a little, about 1/2 - 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC. Just before baking the buns, make the dough for the crosses:
- 80 g all-purpose flour
- 60-65 ml water
Mix the flour and water to a thick paste. Transfer it to a piping bag with a plain tip (alternatively you may use a plastic bag with a cut off edge) and pipe crosses on the risen buns.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 30 min. or until golden brown. If you bake your buns far apart, you will need to reduce the baking time! Meanwhile, prepare the glaze:
- 60 ml water
- 110 g sugar
Cook the syrup until sugar dissolves.
Remove the buns from the oven and brush them with the hot glaze. Serve warm or cold.