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The Bermudian

Hot cross buns aren’t unique to Bermuda, as they’re a Good Friday and Easter-time treat all over the world. With that said, I don’t think anyone could argue that a warm hot cross bun with a delicious codfish cake between the two halves on a Good Friday afternoon in Bermuda – well, it just doesn’t get better than that!

 

Here’s a recipe for making the very best hot cross buns. If this recipe doesn’t make your mouth water, we don’t know what will!

 

For the Buns

2 ½ lbs flour or 10 cups

3 oz brown sugar (6tbs)

¾ oz dry yeast (3 packets)

3 cups warm water

5 cups unsalted butter

2 large eggs

2 tbs cinnamon

½ tbs allspice

½ tsp salt

1 lb raisins

For the Cross

1 cup water

1 cup flour

½ tsp salt

 

For the Glaze

2 ½ cups sugar

1 ¼ cups water

¾ cup white corn syrup

Mix together the yeast, water and sugar and set aside a few minutes until the yeast starts to foam.

Mix together the flour, spices and salt.

With a mixer, or by hand, mix in the flour, butter and eggs into the yeast-water mixture.

Now add the raisins. The dough will be somewhat sticky but should pull away from the sides of the bowl and form a ball. If not, add a little more flour. Cover with a towel and let it rest in a warm place until it doubles in bulk. (Be sure it is in a  bowl large enough to accommodate its new size).

Punch down the dough and cut into small 2 ¼ ounce pieces. Roll into a ball and place on a baking sheet several inches apart. When all are lined up cover again with a towel and put in a warm place away from draughts and allow to rise 15-20 minutes. You will need more than one baking sheet.

Preheat the oven to 400˚.

 

While you are waiting make the “crosses”.

Mix together the flour, water and salt so that it is thick enough to pipe through a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip about an eighth of an inch in diameter. Pipe a cross on each risen bun.

Bake at 400˚ for about 15 – 20 minutes or until golden.

While they are baking, you may make the glaze  by boiling together the sugar, water and corn syrup over  a moderate heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. When it looks clear, brush down the sides with a pastry brush dipped in cold water. Raise the heat and bring to a boil for about 5 minutes. Allow it to cool. It will be sticky but still “brushable”.

When the buns emerge from the oven cool on rack and brush with the glaze.