I can’t believe Easter is just a few days away! It’s pretty ironic, since it falls late this year, yet I feel it has arrived so quickly. I haven’t started the eggs yet! But meanwhile, here’s another classic Easter recipe, with a bit of a twist.
I wanted to make hot cross buns this year, but I’m kind of in a not-loving-raisins mode. So I thought, why not use dried blueberries? I had been eyeing them at the store forever. But then I couldn’t use the usual spices anymore, because sweet spices = warm and blueberries = fresh. So I went with lemon (duh).
With that said, I’m not really sure these can even be considered hot cross buns. But they do have a cross on the top, so I guess it’s ok? You can see I also deviated from tradition by making some sort of negative space cross, using powdered sugar. I thought it looked pretty cool! And also helped me cover up the toasty tops :P
I made these at my boyfriend’s house and I run into some issues, starting with the super hot oven.
Although some of the issues had a bit of a happy ending. For instance, I wanted to add some candied lemon peel, and I had to make it in the microwave at the lack of a small pot. It turned out great and was ready in just 3 minutes! (for this recipe I used 3 tbsp water, 3 tbsp sugar and the peel of one lemon, finely chopped).
Others weren’t so happy, such as the lack of scissors and sifter, which messed up the decoration. It still turned out ok though, since it’s so easy. You only have to cut thin strips of paper (preferably using scissors), layer them out like this, and sprinkle them with powdered sugar (preferably using a sifter!)
I loved this variation, though I will probably make some traditional buns this week, because well, Easter baking only happens once a year! But if you’re tired of the regular ones, or you don’t like raisins, you should give this combo a try.
I also had some leftovers because my boyfriend forgot to take them to work, and they were great on a super lemony bread pudding (made with about 8 buns, 2 cups of milk, 4 eggs, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, and a splash of vanilla).
Anyway, scroll down for the recipe, and I hope you guys have a great last week of Easter baking!
Lemon & Blueberry Hot Cross Buns
Recipe by Sabor Pastel
Yield: 12 big buns, or 16 smaller ones
500 g / 17.5 oz flour
1 tsp salt
75 g / 2 .5 oz sugar
1 1/2 tsp dry yeast
zest of 2 lemons
50 g / 2 oz butter, cold
1 cup milk
100 g / 3.5 oz dried blueberries (about 3/4 cup)
2 tbsp candied lemon peel
1. In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, and zest.
2. Cut the butter in cubes and mix it in, rubbing the mixture with your fingers until there are no visible lumps of butter.
3. Add in the milk and egg, and knead until a soft dough is formed.
4. Form the dough into a ball and let it rest, covered, until it’s doubled in size.
5. Punch down the dough and knead in the blueberries and lemon peel.
6. Divide the dough in 12 portions. Form each portion into a ball and place it in a baking sheet that has been lightly sprinkled with flour.
7. Cover the buns and let them rest until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF.
8. Bake the buns for 15 to 20 minutes.
9. Let cool and decorated with powdered sugar.