Hot Cross Buns! + Easter Traditions

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I have to admit this right off the bat — I totally did not go with the family recipe. Oh boy. It was out of sheer laziness and due to the fact that I had all the ingredients forthisrecipe in my pantry.

Hot Cross Buns (recipe via Bakingdom)

Ingredients

FOR THE BUNS
4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or margarine, cut into pieces
1 1/2 cups warm milk (3/4 cup hot, 3/4 cup cold)

1/2 cup raisins or currants (optional)
1 egg, whisked with a teaspoon of water for egg wash (optional)

FOR THE ICING
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter or margarine, at room temperature
2 to 3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Food coloring (optional)

To make the buns: Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon, cardamom, and salt in a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer and stir to combine.

In a 4 cup measuring cup, combine the 3/4 cup hot milk with the butter pieces and stir until the butter is melted. Add the 3/4 cup cold milk, then stir in the lightly beaten egg.

Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until a dough just forms. Cover with a clean dry towel and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Once rested, add the raisins if using and if mixing by hand, transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. If using a standing mixer, knead on medium speed, with the dough hook attached, until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. The dough should barely stick to the bottom of the bowl. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour 1-2 tablespoons at a time. If it’s too dry, add more milk.

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and allow to rise for 1 to 2 hours, or until doubled in size.

Once the dough has risen, Spray two 9×13 inch baking dishes with nonstick cooking spray, or line with parchment paper. Divide the dough into 24 pieces, each weighing 2 ounces. Gently shape each piece into a smooth, tight boule. Cover with a clean, dry towel and allow to rise for an hour, or until doubled in size. Once doubled, brush with the egg wash.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until they reach about 180 degrees inside. Allow the buns to cool completely before icing.  Makes 2 dozen.

To make the icing: Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth and fluffy, adding splashes of milk until the desired consistency is reached (the icing should be on the thin side, but not as thin as a glaze).I clearly did not wait for the buns to cool to frost them! So delicious straight from the oven! There’s something about that butter + yeast combo that is just so delicious and melt-in-your-mouthy!

My mom made Hot Cross Buns every year thereal way. Which includes some kind of potatoes. It’s a tradition I plan on continuing in our new little Kreisel family (Kevin, Boyd, and me – just to be clear).

Date night this week was Wok Uptown. It was way tinier than I expected. Mostly just take-out, but we braved it for the dine-in experience.

I selected Master Lee’s Healthy Rice: Our special spicy stir-fried with brown rice, sliced chicken breast, broccoli, red and green bell peppers, peas, egg, bean sprouts in sriracha chili sauce.

Whew!!! It was spicy! It was good, but the portion was huge. We boxed up half of it for Kevin’s lunch tomorrow. Half of it plus all the peas. Yucky peas!!

Afterwards, we hit up Target to work on our Easter baskets. Kevin’s idea!!!! Can you believe he thought of that one? Best idea he’s EVER had.

First we had to search for suitable baskets. Cupcake bucket? Polka dot bin?

Not big enough. Lol.

I had to find a basket big enough to fit a Kitchen-Aid!

Kevin and I split up for about 30 minutes, procuring goods for each others’ baskets. We’re such spoiled little adults. We accidentally ran into each other once in the headphones aisle. So neither of us got headphones.

Best family portrait of the night:

Boyd doesn’t exactly sit still.

Eating a Hot Cross Bun today? For sure.

Are you doing Easter baskets? I promise we picked up something for Boyd too. It’s been a little rough on me not having 500+ students to spoil this year so Kevin and Boyd are bearing the brunt of it!