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Hot Cross Buns

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This is adapted from a Cook’s Country recipe for Sweet Dough.

3/4 cup buttermilk, warmed (around 110 degrees)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 stick), melted and cooled until warm
3 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 
2 teaspoons ground spices, optional (if using, try this mixture - 1/2 teaspoon cardamom, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon allspice, 1/4 teaspoon cloves, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg)
1/4 cup sugar 
1 envelope instant yeast or rapid-rise yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 1/4 teaspoons table salt  
Extra flour for the counter
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon water 
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar 
1 tablespoon milk 
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 
 
 
1.    Whisk the butter, buttermilk, and eggs together in a large liquid measuring cup. Mix 4 cups of the flour, the sugar, yeast, spices (if using) and salt in a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook. With the mixer on low speed, add the buttermilk mixture and mix until the dough comes together, about 1 minute.
 
2.    Increase the speed to medium-low and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. (If, after five minutes, more flour is needed, add the remaining 1/4 cup flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough clears the side of the bowl but sticks to the bottom.
 
3.    Turn the dough out onto a clean counter and knead by hand to form a smooth, round ball, about 1 minute. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
 
4.     Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and divide into 12 even pieces. Following the photos, roll the dough into tight balls. Arrange the balls in a greased 9 by 13-inch metal baking dish and wrap tightly in greased plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until the rolls have nearly doubled in size and are pressed against one another, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
 
5.    Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a sharp knife, cut an X through the top 1/4 inch of each bun. Whisk the egg and water together and brush over the buns. Bake until golden and puffed, 25 to 30 minutes.
 
6.    Transfer to a wire rack and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Whisk the sugar, milk, and vanilla together and drizzle in an X into the cut grooves of the buns. Serve warm or let cool completely.

 

- Recipe courtesy of Cook Like James

 

 

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