Better buns! Hot cross fun :)


With Easter fast approaching I thought I would re-post my hot cross bun recipes from last year. One is gluten-free, the other is the same recipe but using spelt flour.

The first recipe I posted for these buns last year was for both dairy-free, gluten free hot cross buns. The taste was spot on but they were a little dense for my liking so I had a go at a second recipe with spelt flour and wow, what an improvement! They’re not gluten-free, but they are low gluten and spelt flour is often tolerated much better by people with gluten intolerance than normal flour so they’re not awful 🙂 .

The original recipe is below and for the “tweaked” version, I just used white spelt flour, instead of the rice flour, corn flour and xanthan gum and upped the yeast a bit…and….. we have… yummy buns! 🙂 woohoo! 🙂

If you want to stick to gluten free though – the original recipe isn’t half bad! 🙂

If you like it you can use candied peel instead of the orange and lemon zest (I’m not a candied peel fan myself which is why I haven’t used it). These are a little dense but being a little dense isn’t too much of a bad thing – I still manage to devour loads of them in one sitting! 🙂

150g Cornflour

100g Rice flour

1.5 tsp Dried yeast

0.5 tsp Xanthan gum

2.5 tbsp Coconut palm sugar / unrefined raw sugar

0.5 tsp Himalayan rock salt

1 tsp Mixed spice

0.25 tsp Ground cinnamon

Zest of 1 lemon

Zest of 1 orange

50g  Olive oil

225 ml Warm water

100g Raisins / currants

For the Cross (optional)

4 tbsps Rice flour

1.5 tsps Cornflour

pinch of Xanthan gum

1.5 tbsps Coconut palm sugar/ unrefined raw sugar

enough water to make a pipeable paste

For the glaze: 3-4 tbsps Golden syrup

Preheat the oven to 180 C. Put the flours, yeast, xantham gum, spices, sugar, salt and orange and lemon zest into a bowl and mix well. Next add the oil and then start to add the water gradually, mixing as you go using a wooden spoon. The mix will have the consistency of a cake batter. Beat until all the lumps are gone. Finally stir in the raisons/currants. Scrape the mixture into the centre of the bowl and cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for approximately 10 mins. It won’t rise dramatically but it will bulk up a bit.

The proof is in the pudding…. or the hot cross bun dough!

While you wait you can make the dough for the cross. Put the flours, sugar and xantham gum into a small bowl and add enough water and mix to make a pipeable paste. Put this mixture into a piping bag, or if like me you don’t have one just pop it in a small plastic sandwich bag and then cut off the corner to pipe through.

After the dough has sat for 10 mins spoon it out onto a baking tray. Try to give your buns as much height as possible when you put the dough out. Pipe the white cross over them. Cover the tray loosely with clingfilm and leave to prove in a warm place for another 5 mins.

Place then in the oven for 10 – 15 mins. Check them regularly – the tops should start to brown and they should sound hollow when tapped on the base! Once done remove from the oven and allow to cool. If you want to glaze them then gently warm the golden syrup and then paint over the top while the buns are cooling (warning it makes them deliciously sticky!).  Allow to cool.

These are definitely best eaten warmed or toasted with some lovely home-made jam! 🙂

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Kiwi loaf – dairy and gluten free and helps you sleep!


It’s been a busy couple of months since I got back from my trip to Indonesia and in that time as well as having loads on at work, we’ve had our kitchen re-done and a load of building work at home. As a result, not only have I not been able to do any baking, but I’ve found living in a building site has been impacting on my sleep! So I did some research and discovered that there’s pretty good evidence that kiwi’s (the fruit!) can help improve the quality and quantity of sleep you get (you can read my article about it here). That got me thinking about creative things to do with kiwi’s other than fruit salads! Lots of the research also suggests that a carb-based snack will also aid restful sleep so I thought I’d try combining the two. I stumbled across a recipe for kiwi bread some time ago so now that the kitchen is finally finished I decided to adapt it and give it a go. I wasn’t sure exactly how it would turn out but it’s actually really good and rather like banana bread. It’s not too sweet but you get lovely flavours from the spices which really complement the slightly tangy kiwi flavour – delish, especially warm!

1/4 cup Agave nectar or sweet freedom (or you could use honey or any liquid sweetner)

1/3 cup Almond oil (or other neutral oil)

1 tbsp Ground flaxseed (linseed) in 3 tbsp warm water (or you could use 1 egg)

1 and 1/2 cups Wholegrain spelt flour or low gluten flour blend

1 cup kiwi pulp (approx 4 kiwi’s)

1/2 cup chopped nuts (I used hazelnuts and almonds as it’s what I had in the cupboard!)

1 cup Raisins

1 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 tbsp Ground cloves

1/4 tsp Himlayan Rock Salt

1 tsp Baking powder

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees CPut the ground flaxseed in the warm water and allow to thicken, then beat with the agave and oil until well mixed. Sieve in the flour, baking powder, salt and spices and combine. Then add the kiwi, raisins and nuts stirring gently. Transfer to a greased loaf tin and place in the oven for 40 – 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool a bit before slicing (or it will crumble – as I discovered as I just couldn’t wait! 🙂 ). Enjoy slightly warm in the evening (or at any time of day to be honest!). Sweet dreams! 🙂

Better Buns! Hot cross ones that is…


Last week I posted a recipe for dairy-free, gluten free hot cross buns. The taste was spot on but they were a little dense for my liking. I’ve still not worked out the best gluten-free flour mix to use but I had a go with spelt flour and tweaked the recipe just a tad and these are great! They’re not gluten-free, but they are low gluten and spelt flour is often tolerated much better by people with gluten intolerance than normal flour so they’re not awful 🙂

So basically I used white spelt flour, instead of the rice flour, corn flour and xanthan gum and upped the yeast a bit…and….. we have… yummy buns! 🙂 woohoo! 🙂

 

Hot Cross Fun!


Another weekend and another challenge! This time to have a go at some “healthy” hot cross buns!

So here goes – gluten-free, dairy free hot cross buns! If you’re not fussed about gluten free you could substitute the cornflour, rice flour and xantham gum for spelt flour. If you like it you can use candied peel instead of the orange and lemon zest too. I don’t think this recipe is quite right yet – the flavour seems to hit the mark, and they look ok (if a bit “rustic”) but they are quite dense. I willl have another play around with the recipe next weekend I think and see if I can impove it. I do wonder if it’s the flour mix causing the denseness? I’d be interested to hear how others get on if they try these 🙂 Being a little dense isn’t too much of a bad thing – I still managed to devour 3 of them in one sitting! 🙂

150g Cornflour

100g Rice flour

1.5 tsp Dried yeast

0.5 tsp Xanthan gum

2.5 tbsp Coconut palm sugar / unrefined raw sugar

0.5 tsp Himalayan rock salt

1 tsp Mixed spice

0.25 tsp Ground cinnamon

Zest of 1 lemon

Zest of 1 orange

50g  Olive oil

225 ml Warm water

100g Raisins / currants

For the Cross (optional)

4 tbsps Rice flour

1.5 tsps Cornflour

pinch of Xanthan gum

1.5 tbsps Coconut palm sugar/ unrefined raw sugar

enough water to make a pipeable paste

For the glaze: 3-4 tbsps Golden syrup

Preheat the oven to 180 C. Put the flours, yeast, xantham gum, spices, sugar, salt and orange and lemon zest into a bowl and mix well. Next add the oil and then start to add the water gradually, mixing as you go using a wooden spoon. The mix will have the consistency of a cake batter. Beat until all the lumps are gone. Finally stir in the raisons/currants. Scrape the mixture into the centre of the bowl and cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for approximately 10 mins. It won’t rise dramatically but it will bulk up a bit.

The proof is in the pudding.... or the hot cross bun dough!

While you wait you can make the dough for the cross. Put the flours, sugar and xantham gum into a small bowl and add enough water and mix to make a pipeable paste. Put this mixture into a piping bag, or if like me you don’t have one just pop it in a small plastic sandwich bag and then cut off the corner to pipe through.

After the dough has sat for 10 mins spoon it out onto a baking tray. Try to give your buns as much height as possible when you put the dough out. Pipe the white cross over them. Cover the tray loosely with clingfilm and leave to prove in a warm place for another 5 mins.

Place then in the oven for 10 – 15 mins. Check them regularly – the tops should start to brown and they should sound hollow when tapped on the base! Once done remove from the oven and allow to cool. If you want to glaze them then gently warm the golden syrup and then paint over the top while the buns are cooling (warning it makes them deliciously sticky!).  Allow to cool.

These are definitely best eaten warmed or toasted with some lovely home-made jam! 🙂