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I grew up having store-bought hot cross buns every Easter in BC, Canada. These are way better! Definitely will be saving this recipe to make every Easter at our house.
Since I come from an English family; most of whom still live in England, and I was raised on these every Easter, I will say that traditionally they are eaten from Good Friday through to Easter Sunday. Ash Wednesday marks the first day of Lent; and there is no sugar or risen goods eaten for forty days (hence Pancake Tuesday the day before). But this recipe has far too much spice in it; and we do not traditionally put icing crosses on the buns. Instead, a cross is cut into each bun gently before baking, and then checking it for rising about halfway through the baking time. After that, a mixture of either water and sugar or milk and sugar is brushed on the top to make a shiny and somewhat sweet taste, without over doing the sugar. There are many bakeries here in America though that have all kind of things in them; even lemon icing crosses on the tops. They might taste good, but are not authentic.
Wonderful, basic traditional recipe but we've always known of Hot Cross Buns to be served at the beginning of Lent, on Ash Wednesday. That is when commercial bakeries premiere their hot cross buns in grocery stores and when local bakeries feature theirs as well. We are here in northern NJ in the NYC tristate area. Happy Easter to all !
if you want the traditional white stripe mix a little flour and water to make stiffish paste and pipe across the cross before baking
It seems at least one step has been left out. Should I combine the wet and dry ingredients before allowing to rise?
...also How many buns does this recipe make and how much milk and sugar are needed to make the crosses?