Choc Chip Hot Cross Buns
06 Apr 20

Choc Chip Hot Cross Buns

by Claire James

Chocolate Chip Hot Cross buns are the ultimate Easter treat, so learning how to make your own at home is a fun activity to do with the kids, and will help to bring a smile during the Easter Holidays.

Don't be put off by the length of the instructions - they're actually super easy to make and my 8yo took charge of most of the baking for these.

Ingredients:

400g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting

Kneading the dough for Hot Cross Buns

1 sachet fast-action dried yeast

50g golden caster sugar, plus 1 tsp

1tsp salt

1 tsp mixed spice

1 tsp ground cinnamon

250ml warm milk

1 medium egg, beaten

50g butter, melted, plus extra for greasing

100g chocolate chips

50g plain flour

2 tbsp apricot jam

Method:

STEP 1 - MIX

  • Ask the kids to weigh out all the ingredients (measured in grams) into separate bowls.

  • Prepare the wet ingredients in advanced – we popped our milk and butter into the microwave for just a few seconds to heat the milk and melt the butter. Get the kids to crack the egg into a bowl and beat using either a small whisk or a fork.

  • Tip the strong flour, golden caster sugar, dried yeast, spices and salt into a bowl and stir to mix with a wooden spoon. Using the back of the spoon, or clean hands, make a well in the centre of the of the flour mix, and add in the wet ingredients – e.g. the milk, butter and egg.

  • Start mixing the ingredients together using a wooden spoon – this will get much harder as the ingredients combine so Mum/ Dad may need to help at this stage.

  • We found our mixture was a little too wet and sticky at this stage so kept added another handful of strong flour until we had produced a workable dough. If the mixture is too dry – add some more milk or a little water to balance the dough out – remember it needs to be pliable enough to knead it!

STEP 2 - KNEAD

  • Get kneading! Dust your worktop with some flour and ask the kids to knead the dough for about 10 mins, stretch the dough out and bring it back into the centre until it becomes smooth and springy.

STEP 3 - PROVE

  • Transfer the dough into a clean, lightly greased bowl and either pop over some cling film or drape over a damp, clean towel and leave somewhere warm to prove for approximately 1hr. (Top tip: We have a freestanding double oven so I switched the bottom oven on and used the top one as a proving drawer – just make sure to turn the bottom oven off once the top oven is warmed through!)

  • Once the dough has doubled in size, tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and flatten. Sprinkle over the chocolate chips and knead the dough a few more times. Divide into 8 even portions – for smaller buns divide into 16 as ours were rather large when cooked!

  • Roll the dough into buns and place on a lightly greased baking sheet in 2 rows of four (or four rows of four). Try and leave some room between each of the buns for them to rise. Cover again and pop back into your warm place for another 20 mins, until they have doubled in size or are just touching.

STEP 4 - BAKE

  • Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°c /180°c / gas mark 6, and make the cross mixture for the top of the buns. To do this mix the plain flour with 1tsp of golden caster sugar and 4-5tbsp of water to make a thick paste. Spoon it into a piping bag, and pipe white lines onto your proved buns.

  • Bake for 20 mins until they are light brown, leave them to cool slightly before moving onto a cooling rack.

  • If you want super-shiny buns like ours, they need to be glazed with apricot jam. Simply pop 2tbsp of jam into the microwave for short 10 second bursts until it is melted, then brush the top of the buns with the glaze, using a pastry brush.
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