200 ml semi-skimmed milk
55 g unsalted butter
2 x 7 g sachet dried yeast
455 g strong bread flour, plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ whole nutmeg
55 g caster sugar
2 pieces stem ginger
1 large free range egg
2 tablespoons plain flour
55 g sultanas or raisins
30 g dried cranberries
2 tablespoons mixed peel
runny honey, to glaze
When it comes to Easter, you can't beat indulging in a lovely, sticky hot cross bun. Give this recipe a go – I promise you'll never buy the shop bought versions again.
1. Add the milk and 50ml water to a small pan and place over a low heat for a few minutes, or until slightly warm – you should be able to dip your finger in without scalding it.
2. Meanwhile, add the butter to a separate pan and place over a low heat for a few minutes, or until melted, then set aside.
3. Transfer the warmed milk mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the yeast. Set aside.
4. Sift the flour into a large bowl, then add the salt, spices, a few good scrapings of nutmeg and the sugar. Finely chop the stem ginger and stir it into the mix.
5. Make a well in the centre and pour in the melted butter, followed by the yeast mixture. In a separate bowl, beat the egg and add it to the bowl.
6. Using a fork, mix well until you have a rough dough, then transfer to a clean flour dusted work surface and knead for around 10 minutes, or until soft and springy.
7. Return the dough to a flour dusted bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for at least an hour, or until doubled in size.
8. Transfer the dough to a clean flour dusted work surface. Knock the air out by bashing it with your fist, then sprinkle over the dried fruit and mixed peel and knead into the dough for 1 to 2 minutes.
9. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5. Grease and line a large baking tray.
10. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll each into balls. Evenly space them out on a lined baking tray as you go.
11. Cover with the tea towel and leave in a warm place for a further 30 minutes, or until doubled in size.
12. Meanwhile, place the plain flour and 2 tablespoons water into a small bowl and mix to a thick paste.
13. Gently pat down the risen buns then use the batter to carefully trace a cross over the top with a piping bag or spoon.
14. Place the buns into the preheated oven for 15 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
15. Transfer to a wire cooling rack, brush over a little honey and leave to cool.
16. Slice open the sticky hot cross buns, spread with a little butter and serve – delicious
Jamie's top tips:
If you prefer, swap the raisins and dried cranberries for your favourite dried fruit – when I fancy a change, I love chopped dried apricots or sour cherries.
If you want to keep the buns lovely and moist for longer, soak the dried fruit in fruit juice for a couple of hours beforehand.
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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.
When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.
For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:
Marine Stewardship Council