Healthy Hot Cross Buns

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Ingredients:

400 g gluten free wholemeal flour

2 tsp instant or quick rise yeast

2 tsp mixed spice (make sure no sugar or nasties added)

200 ml coconut or almond milk

2 tbsp of coconut oil

1 egg

zest and juice of one orange

150 g dried fruit (cranberries, raisins, golden raisins/sultana and apricots)

to make the cross pattern

2 tbsp gf wholemeal flour

2 tbsp water

2 tbsp of warmed honey or maple syrup

Directions:

1. Combine the coconut milk (or almond milk), coconut oil and the zest of an orange in a saucepan and heat it gently on low heat, till the coconut oil melts. Keep aside to cool. Once the milk is cool enough to be touched with bare hands, whisk in an egg and the freshly squeezed juice of one orange.

2. Add the wholemeal flour, mixed spice, instant yeast and the dried fruit to a large bowl. Add the milk mixture into the flour mixture and knead for 5 to 6 minutes. Once kneaded, place the dough into a greased bowl and cover with oiled plastic wrap. Leave to rise for two hours.

3. After two hours, line a baking tray with baking paper. Take out the dough from the oven and remove the plastic wrap. The dough would have doubled in size.

4. Press down the dough and knead it again for 5 to 6 minutes. Once kneaded, divide it into 16 “almost” equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a ball in your palms and then place it onto the baking tray. Then using your palm and fingers try to from the ball into a rounded square shape.

5. With the blunt side of a knife, make a cross shape on the top of each of the buns. Cover with a tea towel and allow to rise for 1 hour.

6. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. While the buns are at their final proofing stage, mix some wholemeal flour with little water to form a thick paste, without any lumps. Place the paste into a piping bag.

7. Once the buns have risen, carefully pipe the wholemeal mixture over the cross marks on the buns. Bake the buns for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown all over.

8. Once baked and golden, remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Meanwhile warm up some honey or maple syrup or even some clean jam in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds. With a pastry brush, brush the warmed honey or jam over the warm buns. This will give the buns a beautiful glazed look.

Bon Appetit!

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