- 110g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
- 2 teaspoons dried yeast
- 250ml (1 cup) milk (at room temperature)
- 75g butter, melted
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 600g (4 cups) plain flour, plus extra, if necessary
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 225g (11/3 cups) sultanas or raisins
- 55g (1/3 cup) mixed orange peel
- 75g (1/2 cup) plain flour (Check the video for the orignal way how the crosses should be made).
- 75g (1/3 cup) caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
1. Getting started
In a small bowl, combine a large pinch of the sugar with 125ml (1/2 cup) body temperature water, then sprinkle yeast over it. Stand mixture in a draught-free place for 7 minutes or until it becomes foamy.
2. Combine yeast mixture
Combine yeast mixture in a large bowl with the milk, butter and egg and stir to combine well.
3. Add ingredients
Add flour, spices, dried fruits and 1 teaspoon salt, then stir until combined and a coarse dough forms (it may be necessary to use your hands).
4. Knead dough
Turn dough out onto a lightly-floured surface then, using your hands, knead dough for 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic, adding a little more flour if dough is sticky. Take care not to add too much extra flour or buns will be heavy.
5. Leave dough to prove
Place dough in a large, greased bowl, turning to coat, then cover with plastic wrap and leave in a draught-free place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size.
6. Cut dough into buns
Using your fist, gently punch dough down to deflate. Turn dough out onto a lightly-floured surface, pat into a rough round shape, then cut into 12 even-sized pieces with a large, sharp knife.
7. Roll each piece into a ball then place, 6cm or so apart, on a greased tray.
Cover loosely with a kitchen towel and stand in a draught-free place for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Grease base and side of one 58x30cm (or base and sides of two 29x16cm) baking dish and pre-heat oven to 200° C. Using a metal spatula, and taking care not to deflate buns, place in dish, spacing them evenly apart.
8. Add crosses and cook
For crosses, combine flour and 80ml (1/3 cup) water in a small bowl and stir until smooth and combine. Place mixture in a piping bag fitted with a small plain nozzle and pipe a cross shape over the top of each bun. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden and risen, then turn out onto a wire rack and allow to cool.
9. Glaze and serve
For glaze, combine sugar, lemon juice and 80ml (1/3cup) water in a small saucepan and slowly bring to the boil, swirling pan occasionally to dissolve sugar. Simmer over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until mixture has reduced a little and is syrupy. Cool slightly, then brush mixture over top of buns. Buns are best served on the day they are made, but they will keep, frozen, in an airtight plastic bag for up to two months.
Enjoy the warm, spicy scent of these delicious buns baking in the oven...