Easter, Yeast Breads

Rye + Ginger Hot Cross Buns


Prep Time : 30 + 15 Minutes | Cook Time : 20 Minutes | Total Time : 3 hours | Difficulty : Bread

Hello my lovelies! Easter is just around the corner. Tis the season for two of my favourite things. The extremely kiwi marshmallow easter egg – seriously they don’t even have them in Australia. And hot cross buns. We are levelling up our hot cross buns this time. Switching out some of the flour for rye. Adding to the depth of flavour. Adding some zing with crystallised ginger. I am firmly on team citrus peel when it comes to hot cross buns. I know there are people out there that can’t stand the stuff. You’re missing out. Ginger is a bright happy alternative though. These buns are soft and buttery with lots of fruit and spice. The way they should be. It is a lot of spice. I like them that way. If you want to dial it back a bit then feel free. To enjoy them at their best remember to warm them before eating. And spread with butter. Because duh.

First up let’s get our yeast moving. Warm the milk and add a pinch of the sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the top and leave to get all foamy. While that’s happening get the rest of the ingredients ready.

In a large bowl mix together the flours, salt, sugar and spices. In NZ we have a mysterious thing called “mixed spice” it is in the same sort of family as “pumpkin spice” but with a different balance of flavours. There is an approximation in the ingredients below for the non-kiwis.

Measure out the raisins, ginger and currants and have them ready to hand. Measure and dice the butter and leave to soften.

When the yeast has formed a nice foamy layer on top of the milk, crack the egg into the milk and whisk with a fork to combine. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients.

Mix to a shaggy dough, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes. This will help the flour absorb some of the liquid and make kneading easier.

Tip the dough out onto the bench. Knead until smooth and elastic – 6 to 7 minutes. The dough will still have a slight stickiness to it because the rye flour behaves a little differently to wheat.

When the dough is kneaded pat it out into a disc and spread about a third of the butter onto it with your hand.

Knead the dough again until the butter is absorbed. It will split and look awful for a bit. Keep going.

When the first portion of butter has been absorbed repeat until all the butter is nicely kneaded into the dough. I know this seems like a lot of work but there’s a good reason. We don’t add the butter with the rest of the ingredients because it will coat the flour and stop gluten from forming when we knead. Then our buns would be saggy and dense. No one likes saggy buns.

The dough will be soft and silky. One last bit of kneading then you can stop. Promise. Spread the fruit out on top of the dough.

Knead until the fruit is well distributed. Pop the dough back in the bowl, cover and leave in a warm spot until doubled in size.

When the dough has doubled tip it out onto the bench. Divide into 12 even portions.

Form each portion into a neat ball. If bits of fruit are sitting on the surface pull them off and eat them. They will just burn in the oven. Put all the balls onto a baking sheet lined with baking paper. How close you place them is up to you – I’ve put them a bit close together so when they rise they will stick together and have nice soft sides. If you want yours to be separated place them further apart.

Cover with a damp tea towel and leave in a  warm spot until doubled in size again. When they look nearly ready heat the oven to 180C (350F).

When the buns are ready brush the tops with beaten egg. In a small bowl mix together the flour and water to form a thick paste. You may need to add a little more water. Spoon the paste into a small zip lock bag and seal. Snip off the corner and pipe crosses onto the buns.

Bake for 15 to 18 minutes until golden brown and shiny.

Transfer the buns to a wire rack to cool before slathering with butter. Butter makes everything better..

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Rye + Ginger Hot Cross Buns


Prep Time : 30 + 15 mins | Cook Time : 20 mins | Total Time : 3 hours | Difficulty : Easy | Makes : 12 small buns

Soft warmly spiced buns with a touch of rye and studded with raisins and candied ginger.

Ingredients:

  • 200 grams strong bread flour
  • 100 grams rye flour
  • 1 + 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mixed spice
  • OR 1 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon cardamom, 1 teaspoon ginger, 1 teaspoon cloves)
  • 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons (165 mls) warm full fat milk
  • 1 + 1/4 teaspoons active dried yeast
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons (55 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon finely diced crystallised ginger
  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) raisins
  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) currants

To finish:

  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons water

– If using metric cups, reduce volume measures by 1 tablespoon for every cup of dry or liquid ingredients – 

Equipment:

  • Bowls and spoons
  • Baking sheet lined with baking paper
  • small zip lock bag

Directions:

First up let’s get our yeast moving. Warm the milk and add a pinch of the sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the top and leave to get all foamy. While that’s happening get the rest of the ingredients ready.

In a large bowl mix together the flours, salt, sugar and spices.

Measure out the raisins, ginger and currants and have them ready to hand. Measure and dice the butter and leave to soften.

When the yeast has formed a nice foamy layer on top of the milk, crack the egg into the milk and whisk with a fork to combine. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients.

Mix to a shaggy dough, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes if you have time. This will help the flour absorb some of the liquid and make kneading easier.

Tip the dough out onto the bench. Knead until smooth and elastic – 6 to 7 minutes. The dough will still have a slight stickiness to it because the rye flour behaves a little differently to wheat.

When the dough is kneaded pat it out into a disc and spread about a third of the butter onto it with your hand.

Knead the dough again until the butter is absorbed. It will split and look awful for a bit. Keep going.

When the first portion of butter has been absorbed repeat until all the butter is nicely kneaded into the dough. I know this seems like a lot of work but there’s a good reason. We don’t add the butter with the rest of the ingredients because it will coat the flour and stop gluten from forming when we knead. Then our buns would be saggy and dense. No one likes saggy buns.

The dough will be soft and silky. One last bit of kneading then you can stop. Promise. Spread the fruit out on top of the dough.

Knead until the fruit is well distributed. Pop the dough back in the bowl, cover and leave in a warm spot until doubled in size.

When the dough has doubled tip it out onto the bench. Divide into 12 even portions.

Form each portion into a neat ball. If bits of fruit are sitting on the surface pull them off and eat them. They will just burn in the oven. Put all the balls onto a baking sheet lined with baking paper. How close you place them is up to you – I’ve put them a bit close together so when they rise they will stick together and have nice soft sides. If you want yours to be separated place them further apart.

Cover with a damp tea towel and leave in a  warm spot until doubled in size again. When they look nearly ready heat the oven to 180C (350F).

When the buns are ready brush the tops with beaten egg. In a small bowl mix together the flour and water to form a thick paste. You may need to add a little more water. Spoon the paste into a small zip lock bag and seal. Snip off the corner and pipe crosses onto the buns.

Bake for 15 to 18 minutes until golden brown and shiny.

Transfer the buns to a wire rack to cool before slathering with butter.

Cook’s Notes:

  • xx
  • xx

 – Keep these buns in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. Warm buns before eating to keep them soft and delicious – 

© 2017 Wellington Bakehouse. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

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