Each year I convince myself that this is the year I will master the Hot Cross Bun. I spend hours looking at recipes and try multiple 'practice' recipes looking for the one I will make for my family on Good Friday, the traditional day that these annual treats are consumed.
Alas, this year, like all the others my practice results were an inevitable disappointment. "The flavour is still yummy" my kids' kindly offer, but I'm a realist - they fall well short of the spiced fluffy buns I long for and are a consistency better suited to ball games than afternoon tea.
Here's the good news though - I've officially given up trying! As a result it feels like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders as I discover I don't even like Hot Cross Buns all that much! However I do love tradition, so I've decided to create a brand new one for my family instead - Spiced Easter Cakes. And we love them!
These moist and tasty muffins pay homage to Easter flavours without a hint of yeast in sight. I've used apples (not strictly in theme) because we have an apple tree and need to use them at every opportunity at this time of year. If Hot Cross Buns weren't a Northern Hemisphere invention I'm pretty sure they would have apples in them too (and you may want to substitute with chopped feijoas for the same reason!)
But the best thing of all is that they're EASY to make and you'll be enjoying these spicy autumnal treats in less than half the time that it takes you to whip up a wholesome batch of disappointment. You're welcome.
- 125g organic butter
- 2/3 c sugar
- 50g mixed peel (or candied lemon or orange peel)
- 50g raisins (or currants or sultanas)
- 2 large organic apples, peeled and thinly chopped
- 1t cinnamon
- 1t mixed spice
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 1/4 c organic flour
- 1t baking soda
- 1/2 t baking powder
- Melt butter in a saucepan together with the sugar and dried fruit. Stir until sugar is mostly dissolved and fruit has softened.
- Mix in apples and spices and leave to stand until cool.
- Preheat oven to 150 C
- Add the egg and stir.
- Sift in the flour, baking soda and baking powder and gently mix to combine.
- Spoon into muffin trays and place into oven.
- Cook for 25-30mins (to check when done insert a skewer which should come out clean and without batter).
Can be stored in an air tight container for 3-4 days. This recipe can also be made into a cake but will take double the cooking time.