Monday, April 15, 2013

Hot Cross Buns

Last year I attempted to make Hot Cross Buns, and they turned out like hard rocks. I was so disappointed and apprehensive to try them again, but I have come a long way since then and thought I would give it a go. I did a bit of hunting and found this wonderful recipe from Nicole Hunn at glutenfreeonashoestring. She has a lot of amazing recipes and is my new favourite person. So a big thank you to her for this one.

I have made some minor adjustments to make them dairy free as well, I use a different mix to make the crosses and my method differs slightly here and there, but you can check out her original recipe here.

We had some visitors on Easter Sunday and when they arrived I had my new recipe Hot Cross Buns baking in the oven. All the while chatting away with our friends I had in the back of my mind, 'I wonder if they are going to work? Will they work? Please let them work.' And just as our visitors were getting ready to leave, the buns came out and I was all smiles and wanted to jump around with excitement because they looked wonderful, they had risen beautifully and smelled delicious. I let them cool just a little then served them still warm, sliced open with a little margarine spread on them. Everyone went quiet, then raved about how good they were. Success! Yum, yum, and... yum. I was so happy. 

I'm not sure I can wait a whole year till next Easter to make these again. In fact, why should I? I don't have to wait till they are being sold in the shops. I can make them whenever I want. Tee Hee. Giggle. Horray!

Here you are, my slightly adapted recipe:

Hot Cross Buns


  • 2 1/2 cups / 350g gluten free flour blend (I used Doves Farm Plain White Flour Blend)
  • 1 3/4 tsp xanthan gum (omit if your flour blend already contains this)
  • 1/2 cup / 100g granulated sugar (I prefer to use 65g of fruit sugar instead)
  • 3 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • grated zest of 1 orange
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 170g raisins/sultanas or other dried fruit *see note*
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp cider vinegar
  • 1 cup warm soya milk (should be at about 100 degrees F)
  • 2 medium eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 112g unsalted dairy-free butter, melted and cooled
For the Egg Glaze:

  • 4 Tblsp confectioner's sugar
  • 1 medium egg
For the Cross
  • 2 Tblsp gluten free flour, plus more if needed
  • 1 Tblsp coconut oil or vegtable oil
  • 2 Tblsp water, plus more if needed
*note* I used raisins in this recipe although I try to avoid them in my diet because of my colitis and the fact that they are high in insoluble fibre because of the skin on them. If you need to avoid this then use dried fruit without skins such as mango, pineapple, apple or pear etc.

  1. Whisk together the flour, xanthan gum, granulated sugar, yeast, cream of tartar, cardamon, cinnamon and allspice. Add the salt and zest of orange and lemon and whisk again to combine.
  2. In a separate small bowl, place the dried fruit and toss them with a Tblsp of the dry ingredients and set the bowl aside.
  3. Add the vanilla, vinegar, milk, eggs and egg yolk and the butter to the dry ingrdients and mix on low speed with a dough whisk. Turn mixer up to high speed and mix for about 6 minutes uninterrupted.
  4. Add the dried fruit to the bowl and mix by hand with a wooden spoon until evenly distributed throughout the dough.
  5. Using a floured 1/4 cup scoop, scoop out a little more than a 1/4 cup of the dough at a time, dropping onto a floured surface, then gently coating with flour and shaping into a ball with floured hands, placing each ball onto a parchment lined baking tray or roasting tray, with a small gap between each roll. You should end up with 11 buns each weighing roughly 95g.
  6. Place the dough buns in a warm and draft free environment to rise until about 1 1/2 times their original size, about 1 hour. They should have risen so that the gaps have closed between each bun.
  7. While the buns are rising, make the egg glaze and the mixture for the cross. For the egg glaze, in a small bowl, place the egg and beat it well. Add the confectioner's sugar and beat to combine well. Set aside. 
  8. For the cross, mix the flour, oil and water together in a small bowl. If the mixture is too thick, add more water, if it is too thin, add more flour to get the right consistency for piping. Set aside.
  9. When the dough buns have finished rising, preheat the oven to 375F/190C/Gas Mark 5 and put the cross mixture in a piping bag with a flat nozzle. Brush each bun carefully and generously with the egg glaze. Then pipe a cross over each bun and then place the tray in the centre of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once during baking, until the buns are golden brown and firm to the touch, about 25-35 minutes.
  10. Allow buns to cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them and breaking apart into individual buns to cool on a wire wrack.

Oh I wish I had one right now. 

Monday, April 1, 2013


I can't remember what 'wheat' doughnuts take like, but these taste like what I think doughnuts should taste like and my partner, who can still eat 'wheat' doughnuts says these are amazing and he can't tell the difference. 

I no longer have to wish that I could still eat gluten so I could have things like these, I no longer think people who can eat gluten are lucky. These doughnuts make me feel lucky. 

Thank you to whoever it was who came up with this recipe, I can't remember where I got it from it was so long ago the first time I made these. I don't know why I haven't posted this sooner. But whoever you are, wherever you are I love you. These are fantastic and with the recent craze of this 'Krispie Kreme' frenzy everyone seems to be in, I say who needs it when I have these.

  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup(237ml) soya milk mixed with 1 Tblsp lemon juice (or if you can have dairy use regular milk mixed with the lemon juice or simply use buttermilk)
  • 1/8 cup(30g) butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 1/2 cups(350g) gluten free flour blend ( I use Doves Farm plain white flour blend)
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum (omit this if your flour blend already contains it)
  • 1/2 cup(115g) sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda 
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. Combine eggs, milk and melted butter in a large bowl. Mix well with a whisk or fork.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl and add to the wet. Mix by hand with a large spoon. (Do not use an electric mixer)
  3. Let bater rest for about 15 minutes. Turn dough onto a well floured surface. If dough is sticky, work in more flour until you get a soft dough.
  4. Roll dough to 1/2 inch thick and cut with a doughnut cutter or use one large round cutter about 8cm in diameter and then a small cutter or lid about 2cm in diameter to cut out the middle (unless you are making filled dougnuts, then you do not need to cut out the middle)
  5. Fry the doughnuts in 1 to 3 inches of very hot oil (375 F) until brown on one side. Turn doughnuts over and brown on the other side. I maintained the temperature of the oil using a candy thermometer and adjusted the heat as necessary. If your oil starts to smoke, the oil is too hot, I remember this from the first time I made them and did not have a candy thermometer. Be gentle when placing and turning doughnuts so as not to splash hot oil on yourself and make sure to use a metal or heatproof utensil.
  6. Lift each doughnut out and place on a plate with sugar to coat while they are still warm. Or if you are making chocolate glazed doughnuts, see below.
Chocolate Glaze (optional)

  • 1 1/2 Tblsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 Tblsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Tblsp hot water
  • 3/4 cup(85g) confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  1. Mix the coconut oil and hot water in a bowl. Sift in the confectioners sugar and cocoa power and mix well. Stir in the vanilla.
  2. Invert the doughnuts and dip into the chocolate glaze. Turn chocolate side up and place on plate or greaseproof paper lined tray to set.
*Note* Like 'wheat' based doughnuts, they are best eaten on the day they are made. By the next day they will be a little stale. But they can be frozen to keep them fresh. This recipe makes about 12 dougnuts. I make half this recipe at a time so I don't have so many. 

For filled doughnuts:

If you are making filled doughnuts, fry them first, then while they are still warm, poke a hole in both sides of your doughnut and use a pastry syringe or long nozzle on your pastry bag and pipe in the filling of your choice until you see the doughnut swell and before it bursts. You will get the hang of it after a couple of doughnuts.
Why not try filling with jam and coat with sugar, or fill with custard and top with the chocolate glaze. The combinations and filling choices are endless I'm sure.