Hot Cross Bun Loaf
- 250g bread flour or strong plain flour
- 45g caster sugar
- 1/2 tbsp ground mixed spice
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- Zest of 2 blood oranges
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 40g butter
- 125ml milk
- 7g fast-acting dried yeast
- 1 medium free-range egg, beaten
- 50g sultanas
- 50g chopped mixed peel
- 50g chopped dark chocolate chips
- Sunflower oil for greasing
- For the Cross
- 50g flour
- 60g water
- For the Glaze
- 25g blood orange marmalade
- Juice of 1 blood orange
You will need a 1kg loaf tin.
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 160°C Fan/ 350°F/ Gas Mark 4.
2. Mix the flour, sugar, spices, orange zest and salt in a large mixing bowl.
3. Gently warm the milk and butter in a pan until it’s lukewarm and whisk in the yeast.
4. Add this to the flour mixture and mix well.
5. Add the beaten egg and bring the mixture together into a smooth dough.
6. Dust with a little flour then tip the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead the sultanas, mixed peel and chocolate chips into the dough.
7. Continue to knead for 5 minutes until smooth and silky.
8. Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp tea towel to prove, keep in a warm area for 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
9. Turn the dough out on to a floured surface and divide it into 8 pieces and roll each piece into a ball.
10. Butter a 1kg loaf tin and place the balls into the tin creating two rows of four. Cover with a damp cloth and prove again for 1 hour in a warm place.
11. The dough will now have risen to the top of the tin.
12. For the famous cross: Mix the flour and water together and place into a piping bag. Pipe a cross on top of each ball and bake the loaf in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
13. Once the loaf is cool enough to handle, tip out onto a cool-ing rack cross side up.
14. Place the blood orange marmalade and orange juice into a pan and bring to the boil, then use this mixture to lightly glaze the top of the loaf.
Delicious when dipped in egg and fried in butter, serve with yo-ghurt and fruit for amazing twist on French toast.