Spiced Sour Cherry and White Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

For many years I’ve had a love/hate relationship with gluten free bread making. I’ve managed to create focaccia and pizza bases, but alas a light fluffy bun or a soft yet crusty loaf has evaded my abilities!

I’m not sure what it is about the elusive bread roll or loaf that seems so far out of my grasp, but I somehow manage to make dense, cake like bread structures no matter the flour mix I used or procedure I followed.

At least, this was the case until I came across the incredible Silvia Colloca’s recipe for ‘Gluten Free Soft Ricotta Rolls‘.

Since discovering this recipe, I’ve used it as a starting base for many different flavour combinations and bread types. The structure is light and it is the perfect catalyst for dried fruit, nuts and even chocolate pieces.

It is with this base that I developed my take on ‘Hot Cross Buns’.

These buns are a great combination of sweet and sour, with enough spice to link it back to a traditional hot cross bun, but be completely different at the same time.

I’m so excited to share this recipe with you and hope it adds a little spice and creativity to your hot cross bun traditions.

Spiced Sour Cherry & White Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

SPICED SOUR CHERRY & WHITE CHOCOLATE HOT CROSS BUNS
Ingredients:

8g dried yeast
150ml luke warm water
300g ricotta
400g gluten free bread flour (Caputo Fiore Glut)
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp caster sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil (plus an extra tbsp oil to coat the dough)
2 1/2 tsp mixed spice
1/4 cup Iranian green raisins, roughy chopped
1/4 cup pitted dried sour cherries
1/4 cup white chocolate, roughly chopped

For the cross:
2 tbsp gluten free self raising flour
2 – 3 tbsp water

Method:
1. Add the yeast to the luke warm water and set aside for around 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine the ricotta, flour, maple syrup, sugar, mixed spice and oil, then after 10 minutes, add the yeasty water. Mix until a dough starts to form and knead until it becomes smooth (should only be a couple of minutes).
3. Add the raisins, sour cherries and white chocolate to the dough and knead until well-dispersed, then form the dough into a ball.
4. Add 1 tbsp vegetable oil to the empty dough bowl and smooth around the bottom and sides of the bowl. Place the dough ball back into the greased bowl and cover with cling wrap or a damp tea towel and place in a warm area for two hours.
5. After 2 hours, the dough should almost be double in size. Split the dough into bun size portions (I split mine into 7), form into small balls and arrange next to each other on a tray.
6. In a small bowl combine the gluten free self raising flour and 2 tbsp water and mix until combined, if too thick at this point (not able to be piped), add the extra tbsp water and mix until smooth. Pour into a piping bag and pipe a cross on the top of each bun.
7. Set the prepared buns aside and let them rise for an hour (two hours if you have the time).
8. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees celsius and bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.
9. Remove from the tray and place on a wire cooling rack and allow to cool for at least 30 minutes before eating.
10. Slice in half and smother with butter before devouring.
*Pairs perfectly with a hot drink and a great a book!

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