Before I came to New Zealand I had never heard of hot cross buns. People like to heat them up and then cut them in half and spread some butter or margarine onto them. The flavor is very close to Lebkuchen which is more a Christmas spice for me. But I am used to the concept now 😉 And I thought it was time to create my own gluten-free, vegan recipe.
Phew! It was a challenge! I’ve been baking hot cross buns almost everyday for two weeks to try and find the perfect recipe. I have hot cross buns coming out of my ears! As it turned out, I couldn’t find the perfect gluten-free version that would be exactly as the non-gluten-free one. They just don’t rise as much. But they taste amazing and have a fluffy texture!
If you would like the buns to be higher you can place them in a muffin form. This way they won’t spread as much but rise higher and also look more like a muffin.
For 1 dozen hot cross buns you’ll need:
For the dough:
3 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon coconut sugar
1 cup warm water
3/4 cup (120g) sorghum flour
3/4 cup (140g) brown rice flour
1 1/2 cup (190g) tapioca starch
1/4 cup (40g) coconut sugar
2 tablespoon fibre husk
1 tablespoon FAIR-TRADE cocoa powder
1 pinch salt
3/4 cup warm water
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup (150g) raisins (soaked)
2 teaspoon spices (cardamon, cloves, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg)
For the glazing:
2 tablespoon coconut sugar
2 tablespoon hot water
1 tablespoon olive oil
For the crosses:
1 heaped tablespoon rice flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 pinch guar gum
1 pinch baking powder
4-5 tablespoon water
Soak the raisins in filtered water for at least 30 minutes.
Dilute the dried yeast with sugar in one cup of warm water. Place aside.
For the dough, mix the dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
Rinse the raisins and mix with two teaspoons of spices. You can mix the spices yourself by grinding up cardamon, cloves, allspice, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Add the yeast mixture (make sure it is active now), 3/4 cup warm water, olive oil and vinegar to the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the raisins at the end.
Cover with a damp, clean dish towel and place in a warm spot for approx. 1 hour (or until the dough has doubled in size).
Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Mix the dough again, sprinkle the table with some flour and drop the dough on it. If it is too wet and sticky to touch, sprinkle some more flour on top.
Knead the dough for a few minutes.
Then half it, roll two rolls and part each roll into 6 pieces.
Shape the pieces with your hands to a ball and place on the baking tray, leaving 1 cm space in between.
Place the baking tray in some warm spot for a further 15-20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 190°C.
In the meantime prepare the glazing by mixing the coconut sugar with the hot water and olive oil in a cup.
Also prepare the crossing paste by first mixing the dry ingredients and then adding the water until it is a paste that will be thick enough to be piped onto the buns.
Once the buns have risen, brush with half of the glazing.
Then pipe the crosses on. You can use a freezer bag that has one corner cut off with a pair of scissors.
Place in the oven and bake for 5 minutes before covering with a sheet of aluminum paper loosely placed on top and then baking for another 10 minutes.
Then take the buns out of the oven and brush the other half of glazing on.
Place in the oven for another 5 minutes. If the buns become too dry on top, cover with the aluminum paper sheet again.
The buns are best eaten freshly baked. Stored in an airtight container at room temperature they will still be fine the next day but they become considerably harder with each additional day.