Happy Easter everyone! Here is a fresh take on a classic recipe that has always been a herald of spring! I grew up loving hot cross buns, but had never entertained making them until I bought the March/April 2017 issue of “Bake From Scratch”. The issue has several drool-worthy variations of classic hot cross buns, and this year I made this more boozy one stuffed with marzipan, and drizzled with a rum glaze. I meant to post the classic recipe last year, but we devoured the buns before I got to take pictures of them! This year I was determined to share my efforts. Please don’t be daunted by all of the ingredients and sub-recipes! You can make the marzipan well in advance, as with the Golden Syrup and Rum Glaze. Or, you can skip the glaze altogether. It adds a sweeter touch to the buns, but is not necessary. I hope you enjoy the recipe as much as we did here. Your family will be so impressed that you made your own.
Rum Raisin Hot Cross Buns
1 2/3 cups (213 grams) raisins
¾ cup (180 grams) aged rum, warmed
1 tablespoon (12 grams) granulated sugar
1 ¼ cups (300 grams) warm whole milk (105°F to 110°F)
14 grams active dry yeast
½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar, divided
5 2/3 cups (709 grams) all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon (3 grams) kosher salt
1 teaspoon (2 grams) ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
1/3 cup (76 grams) unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs
6 tablespoons marzipan (96 grams) (recipe below)
½ teaspoon rum extract
1 large egg
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons whole milk, divided
Rum glaze (recipe below)
1 ½ cups (180 grams) confectioner’s sugar
In a large bowl, combine raisins, warm rum, and ¼ cup (50 grams) sugar. Cover with plastic wrap, and let stand for at least 40 minutes. Strain, and discard excess liquid.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine warm milk, yeast and ¼ cup sugar. Let stand until the mixture is foamy, about 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together 5 1/3 cups (667 grams) flour, remaining ¼ cup sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.
Stir raisins into the flour mixture.
With mixer on low speed, add half of the flour mixture to the yeast mixture, beating just until combined. Beat in melted butter and eggs. Gradually add remaining flour mixture, beating until a soft dough forms.
Switch to the dough hook attachment. Beat at medium speed until smooth, about 4 minutes, adding remaining 1/3 cup flour as needed. Dough should not be sticky.
Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Loosely cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place, until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Line a 12-cup, jumbo muffin pan with parchment paper liners.
Lightly punch down dough and let rise, covered, for 5 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine marzipan and rum extract, kneading until smooth. Roll marzipan into 12 balls. Divide dough into 12 pieces.
Place one ball of marzipan in center of each piece of dough, pinching to seal seam. Roll each pieces of dough into a ball, and place in prepared muffin cups. Cover and let stand in a warm, draft-free place until puffed, about 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 1 tablespoon milk. Brush buns with egg mixture.
Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Brush with rum glaze (recipe below).
In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioner’s sugar and remaining 1 tablespoon and 2 teaspoons milk until a thick paste forms. Using a pastry bag fitted with a Wilton #10 piping tip, pipe paste over top of cooled buns to form a cross.
1 ½ cups (216 grams) almond flour
1 ½ cups (183 grams) confectioner’s sugar
1 egg white
2 teaspoons (10 grams) rosewater
2 teaspoons (10 grams) almond extract
In the bowl of a food processor, combine almond flour and confectioner’s sugar. Pulse until combined. Add egg white, rosewater and almond extract. Process until mixture holds together. If the mixture is too dry, add a bit of water. Store marzipan wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 1 month.
Makes about 1 cup.
1/3 cup Golden Syrup (recipe below)
1 tablespoon (15 grams) spiced rum
In a medium saucepan, heat Golden Syrup over medium-high heat until warmed. Remove from heat, and stir in rum. Return to heat, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Let cool to room temperature.
2 ½ cups (500 grams) granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons room temperature water
1 1/3 cup boiling water
In a medium saucepan, stir together ½ cup sugar and 2 tablespoons room temperature water. Cook over medium-high heat, without stirring, until deep amber coloured. Remove from heat, and stir in remaining water and sugar. Return to medium-low heat, and simmer, without stirring, until thickened, about 20 – 30 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
This recipe makes enough glaze for multiple recipes. Cover and refrigerate for up to 6 months.