A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.

Fruit and Chocolate Chip Hot-Cross Buns and Egg-Dyeing

Easter’s just a few days away; a good excuse to whip up some hot cross buns and fill the house with the scent of warm spices and freshly baked bread! I have been feeling rather despondent lately and no sweets, desserts, entertainment or even ferocious crocheting could snap me out of this blue fog. No major concerns, no dramas; in fact I’m in a good place at the moment. April has certainly kept me occupied with birthday cakes, ‘New Baby’ cupcakes for the coming week and loads of crocheting projects that I hope to turn into a moolah-making venture, albeit small, it should be fun!  Yet, here I am feeling down in the dumps; Bah! Must be the shorter days and longer, colder nights <shrugs shoulders>

Alright, time to stop being a sourpuss. I tried to channel all that emo-ness into the upcoming Easter festivities. While I don’t exactly celebrate it, other than the usual pig-out sessions with whoever’s not on a long-weekend getaway, this is a good excuse to get creative in the kitchen. So I’ve decided to load up my hot cross buns with rum-soaked sultanas, peel, dark chocolate chips and crosses made from a flour and hazelnut paste. Buns turned out really soft and scrumptious indeed especially when consumed warm and slathered with butter!

  

Had a play with egg-dyeing as well; looked up some tips from Martha Stewart.com. Mine were simply dyed with food colouring using the boiled method; hardboiling the eggs in a simmering solution of water, colour and vinegar. I tried using elastic bands, fronds and sprigs of herbs from my garden for pretty imprints but I suppose I lacked the patience and finesse to produce more intricate results. Still love the colours though! 🙂 Can’t wait to experiment further with this craft especially blowing the eggs out of their shells then colouring, painting, stencilling  or applying decoupage on them; I could see myself going nuts!

Drying out the dyed hard boiled eggs in the oven

Magic Eggs?

Alien Purple Egg?
 

 Blue egg with very faint carrot-leaf imprint

 Dinosaur Egg? :mrgreen:

Well better luck with the eggs next time. Tomorrow I’ll be attempting giant chocolate eggs! It will be one big happy mess in my kitchen! 😛 And hopefully, those chocolate endorphins will help kick the blues in the butt!

Fruit and Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns

A)  14 g dried yeast
       50 g caster sugar
       375 ml warm milk (body/blood temperature 37oC)

B)  600 g plain flour
      1 teaspoon mixed spice
      1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

C)  60 g butter, cut into small cubes
      1 egg

D)  70 g sultanas, rinsed with water then soaked with 2 tablespoons rum
      60 g dark chocolate chips

Flour & Hazelnut Paste

35 g plain flour
40 ml water
20 g hazelnut meal
30 g brown sugar
20 g butter
25 ml frangelico (hazelnut liqueur)
20 ml water (extra)

Bun Glaze

2 tablespoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons water
zest of one lemon

  1. Combine (A) in a small bowl; cover with cling-wrap and stand in warm place for about 10 minutes or until mixture is frothy.
  2. Sift (B) into a mixing bowl; pour in the yeast mixture, (C) egg and butter and with a dough hook, set to knead on medium speed for 6 minutes or until dough is elastic. Alternatively, knead with hands until smooth and elastic. Add (D) and knead well into the dough; cover the bowl with cling wrap and leave to proof in a warm area (35oC warm oven would be ideal) until dough has doubled in size. (Mine took 35 minutes)
  3. Grease a 10 inch square pan or a swiss roll tray.
  4. Punch/Knock back the dough then turn out onto a lightly floured surface; divide the dough into 16 equal sized portions then knead into balls. Place buns on greased tray, cover loosely with cling wrap then let them proof  for another 15 – 20 minutes or until dough has doubled in size.
  5. While the buns are proofing, make the flour and hazelnut paste; bring the butter, brown sugar and water to the boil; stir in the flour and hazelnut meal and stir the mixture until you get a thick paste that leaves the sides of the pan (cook for about 1 minute over small to medium heat). Transfer this paste to a bowl. With electric beaters or a whisk, mix in the frangelico and extra water a little at a time and incorporate well with the flour paste. Spoon this into a piping bag fitted with a small plain tube and when ready, pipe crosses on top of the buns.
  6. Pre-heat oven to 220oC (200oC for fan-forced)
  7. Bake buns for 20 minutes; meanwhile make the bun glaze by bringing all glaze ingredients to the boil (until sugar dissolves). When ready, immediately brush warm glaze on hot buns. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
  8. Serve warm with butter. 
3 people like this post.

3 comments to Fruit and Chocolate Chip Hot-Cross Buns and Egg-Dyeing

  • Aww sorry to hear about your Autumn Blues but it is contagious and seems to be going around. Hope you feel better soon! And love the dyed eggs. They’re gorgeous 🙂

  • Mei Sze

    Thanks gal, this feeling absolutely sucks! 😛 I usually enjoy Autumn; mushroom picking season, pumpkin soups, leaf changing colours…sigh…oh well..I’ll go kill some zombies now ( P vs Z)

  • Vyanne

    Such beauties, both buns and eggs!