I do love Hot Cross Buns, those lovely yeasted buns. They are, as you may know, filled with fruits and spices. Hot Cross Buns are usually served on Good Friday. Of course these days they are available almost all year round and are enjoyed just as a lovely fruity bun.
But some people are just a little afraid of trying to make yeasted buns, or breads. So I decided to make a simple, muffin, alternative. So these Hot Cross Muffins have the same wonderful flavours as the buns. But, of course, they have a different texture. Also the cross on the top is made of icing, so that it different too.
Indeed, the muffins are great even without the cross on top. They have a lovely subtle spice flavour, from cinnamon, nutmeg and all spice. Then the fruitiness from soaked sultanas and some chopped mixed peel.
These days, in the UK, Hot Cross Buns are available with many different flavours, so the same can happen with these muffins too. I decided to stick with the more traditional spice and fruits, as I just like that combination so much.
As with all muffins these are quick and easy to make. Mix the wet ingredients in one bowl. Mix the dry in another bowl. Combine the wet and dry ingredients and fill the muffin pan. That is all there is to it.
Bake the muffins and let them cool. Make a quick icing and pipe it on the muffins. Then your Hot Cross Muffins are ready to serve.
The batter was easy to make, as described above.
I filled the muffin pan and baked the muffins for 20 minutes. A skewer, when poked into the muffins, came out clean. So I removed them from the oven and left them to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
Then I transferred them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Next I made the quick and easy icing and piped crosses on the top of the muffins..
The final step was the taste test. I have to say that I just loved the muffins. The texture was perfect for a muffin, nice and dense and robust. The flavour had all those lovely spices, so reminiscent of Hot Cross Buns. The same with the fruit too.
The icing added just a little extra sweetness to the delicious muffins.
These work very well as an alternative to the buns.
Another great muffin recipe is Blueberry Streusel Muffins.
Hot Cross Muffins – For EasterCourse: Easter Baking, MuffinsCuisine: EasterDifficulty: Easy
365(2 1/3 cups + 2 tbsp, base on scooping packed flour into a 250ml cup) plain flour
113g(1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 medium eggs(large in USA)
360ml(1 1/2 cups) milk
f67g(1/3 cup) caster sugar
12g(3 tsp) baking powder
1.5g(1/2 tsp) ground cinnamon
1.5g(1/2 tsp) ground nutmeg
1.5g(1/2 tsp)ground allspice
3g(1/2 tsp) salt
170g(1 cup) sultanas( or other fruits such as currants, raisins etc)
85g(1/2 cup) chopped mixed peel
30ml(2 tbsp) rum, brandy, orange juice, tea or water – for soaking
140g(1 1/4 cups) icing sugar
28g(2 tbsp) softened unsalted butter
15ml(1 tbsp) milk
5ml(1 tsp) vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/390F.
- Grease the holes of a 12 hole muffin pan.
- Stir the sultanas into the soaking liquid and allow to soak for at least 30 minutes.
- In a bowl place the milk, eggs, melted butter and sugar and whisk to combine.
- In another, large, bowl mix the flour, spices, salt and baking powder together.
- Stir in the sultanas, with any excess soaking liquid, and the chopped mixed peel.
- Add the wet ingredients and stir the mixture until just combined into a batter.
- Scoop the mixture into the 12 holes of the muffin pan, distributing evenly.
- Bake the muffins for 20 to 25 minutes, until they have risen well and a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean.
- Remove them from the oven and leave in the pan for 10 minutes. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Mix the icing sugar, butter, milk and vanilla extract into a thick icing.
- Use the icing to make crosses on the top of each cooled muffin(I used a piping bag). Then the muffins are ready to serve.