Baffled about what you can impress your family for Easter? Don’t panic – we asked chef extraordinaire Siba Mtongana for her fan (and family) favourite hot-cross bun recipe!
Siba Mtongana’s easy hot-cross buns recipe:
For the hot-cross buns
- 4 cups wheat cake or bread flour + extra for kneading
- 11⁄2 tsp salt
- 10 g sachet yeast
- 2 tbsp ground cinnamon 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1⁄2 tsp nutmeg
- 1⁄2 tsp all spice
- 1⁄2 cup white sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tbsp olive or canola oil + extra for kneading
- 325 ml warm milk
- 6 tbsp butter, melted
- 1 large red apple, grated
- 1 cup cranberries (rehydrate with
- 1 cup hot water for 15 minutes)
For the paste
- 1⁄2 cup wheat cake or bread flour
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 6–8 tbsp water
For the glaze
- 4 tbsp honey (or jam or sugar water or light sugar syrup)
1. In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour, salt, yeast, spices and sugar together and mix.
2. Make a well in the centre and add the egg and oil. Lightly stir.
3. Now mix the warm milk with melted butter and add a little at a time, until well combined. Mix until the mixture comes together.
4. Place on a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes until soft, pliable and smooth. Place in an oiled bowl and cover with a light dampcloth. Proof for 45 minutes to 1 hour until it has doubled in size.
5. Place on a floured surface and punch flat. Add the grated apple and rehydrated cranberries and knead to mix. Roll into a log and cut into 18equal pieces and partially cover.
6. Place on oiled and lightly floured baking trays and lightly cover to proof again for 20–30 minutes.
7. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 190°C and make the paste for thecross by whisking the flour, oil and water together to create a thick paste and pour into a piping bag. Snip a small piece in front.
8. Create the cross on each bun using the paste and bake for 15–20 minutes. Brush with honey or the alternatives provided.
9. Serve immediately with butter and grated cheese or on its own or with pickled fish.
TIP: ‘Don’t rush it. Learn as you go. Doing it that way, I’ve been able to make tweaks rather than big, expensive mistakes.’ – Siba