good friday

It’s that time of year again, we can finally enjoy eating the traditional sticky glazed fruit buns with pastry crosses - Or as we all know them, hot cross buns. Not only is this a tasty treat or the whole family but they’re fun to make as well.

Celebrate Good Friday by baking some hot cross buns and enjoying them with your friends and family. You could even make enough to last you the full weekend if you really love them!


For the buns

  • 625g/1.3lb strong white flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 45g/1.5 oz unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 85g/3oz sugar
  • 1 lemon, zest only
  • 1½ tsp fast-action yeast
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 275ml/10fl oz tepid milk
  • 125g/4oz mixed dried fruit

For the toppings

  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • vegetable oil, for greasing
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup, gently heated, for glazing

How To Make

  1. Sieve the flour, add the salt and ground mixed spice into a large mixing bowl, then rub the butter in using your fingertips. Make a hole in the middle of the mixture, then add the sugar, lemon zest and yeast.

  2. Beat the egg and add to the mixture with the tepid milk. Mix together to a form a soft, pliable dough./li>
  3. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Carefully work the mixed dried fruit into the dough until it is evenly spread throughout the dough. Knead lightly for 5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.

  4. Grease a warm, large mixing bowl with butter. Shape the dough into a ball and place it into the prepared bowl, then cover with a clean tea towel and set aside in a warm place for one hour to prove.

  5. Turn out the proved dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knock back the dough. Shape it into a ball again and return it to the bowl, then cover again with the tea towel and set aside for a further 30 minutes to rise.

  6. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface again and split it into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, flatten them slightly into a bun shape using the palms of your hands. Cover the buns again with the tea towel and set aside to rest for 5-10 minutes.

  7. Grease a baking tray with butter and place the buns onto the tray. Wrap the tray with the buns on it loosely in greaseproof paper, then place inside a large polythene bag. Tie the end of the bag tightly so that no air can get in and set aside in a warm place for a further 40 minutes to rise.

  8. Preheat the oven to 240C/475F/Gas 8.

  9. Meanwhile, for the topping, mix the plain flour to a smooth paste with 2 tablespoons of cold water.

  10. When the buns have risen, remove the polythene bag and the greaseproof paper. Spoon the flour mixture into a piping bag and pipe a cross on each bun.

  11. Transfer the buns to the oven and bake for 8-12 minutes, or until pale golden-brown. As soon as you remove the buns from the oven, brush them with the hot golden syrup, then set aside to cool on a wire rack.