Posted in Recipes on 30.03.2018
Double Chocolate and Orange Hot Cross Buns
prep: 30 mins / cook: 25 mins / inactive: 60 mins / total: 1 hour 55 mins / quantity: 12 buns Print recipe?
As it’s officially spring but still feels like winter I thought we should celebrate all things chocolate with these Double Chocolate and Orange Hot Cross Buns.
There’s no mystery to baking with yeast but it does take time. There’s very short periods of frantic activity (great calorie burn for an extra bun) followed by a couple of hours of leaving the yeast to do its wonderful thing.
And did you ever make glue from flour and water as a kid? Well this is all the ‘hot crosses’ are made from – playschool paste! It’s kinda weird to work with this stuff as it’s like melted mozzarella only more stringy!
If you don’t fancy hot crosses on your buns, you can leave it off – it’s mostly a chewy decorative thing and not a recipe deal breaker.
What I do urge you to use, though, is Doisy & Dam’s Goji and Orange chocolate. This is the stuff of legend. Sonnets will be written about this chocolate, you mark my words. I’ve eaten chocolate pretty much my entire life. And I never thought chocolate could be improved. As a simple bar it’s sheer perfection. It melts at body temperature, it’s practically mandatory for emotional support and it will never let you down.
But then Doisy & Dam came along and said ‘we want to add superfoods to ALL our chocolate bars’ because that’s the kind of geniuses they are. They also know that people want a balanced lifestyle and treats should be a part of that.
As for these Double Chocolate and Orange Hot Cross Buns – there’s extra raw cacao richness, extra orange zest zing, chewy soft dried apricots (instead of boring ol’ raisins) and a whole bar of that DIVINE chocolate. Happy Easter everyone!
If you make this recipe or any of the recipes from The Cook & Him we’d LOVE to see! Just snap a picture and share it on Instagram using #thecookandhim and tagging @thecookandhim in the photo itself (as this guarantees we’ll see your picture!)
Double Chocolate and Orange Hot Cross Buns
prep: 30 mins / cook: 25 mins / inactive: 60 mins / total: 1 hour 55 mins / quantity: 12 buns
- 250g strong white bread flour
- 250g wholemeal bread flour
- 50g vegan spread (I used Vitalite)
- 100g coconut sugar
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 1 tsp all-spice
- 1 orange – grated zest only
- 25 raw cacao powder
- 7g sachet dried active yeast
- 250 ml almond milk
- 200g dried apricots – roughly chopped
- 1 x 100g bar Doisy & Dam Goji and Orange Chocolate – finely chopped or grated
- 1/4 cup maple syrup for glazing
- 3 tblsp plain flour
- 3 tblsp water
- Put both flours into a large bowl and rub in the vegan spread using your fingertips
- Stir in the sugar, spices, orange zest, cacao powder and dried yeast
- Gently warm the almond milk - you want it blood temperature which means when you put your finger in to test it you can't feel if it's hot or cold! If it's too hot it will kill the yeast and it won't prove (think hockey pucks!) ... too cold and the yeast will take longer to activate!
- If you get it too hot just set aside until it cools to blood temperature
- Pour the warm milk into the dry ingredients and stir together till it starts to form a dough
- Tip out onto a floured work surface and knead for around 10 minutes until it's soft and elastic. You'll want to put your back into this as you're trying to stretch the gluten in the flour that gives baked bread its texture!
- Once its well kneaded put into a large clean bowl that you've lightly oiled and cover with a clean t-towel or piece of clingfilm
- Leave the bowl in a warm place to prove for around an hour or until doubled in size
- Once it's doubled in size tip the dough back onto your work surface and knead in the chopped apricots and chopped/grated chocolate until very well incorporated
- Divide the dough roughly into 12 equal sized balls and using your hands roll/shape them into buns
- Put onto a large tray lined with parchment. The rolls are going to rise again so you'll want to space them not too close together to allow room to expand. Use 2 trays if you don't have one large enough
- Loosely cover the tray with a piece of oiled cling film (the oil stops it sticking when you remove it to bake the buns!) and again leave in a warm place for around an hour or until doubled in size
- Just before they're ready to be baked, preheat your oven to 200 Fan / 220 C / 425 F / Gas 7. Prepare your crosses - whisk together the flour and water to a thick but fluid paste - too thin and it will just run off the top of your buns, too thick and you won't be able to pipe it! This part is a bit trial and error - different flours have different absorbency qualities so add more flour or water to get the right consistency
- Put the paste into a piping bag - or a sturdy sandwich bag which you'll then snip the corner off
- Remove the piece of cling film and pipe crosses of paste over the tops of each bun
- Put the tray(s) in the oven for 25 minutes. To check if they're cooked, carefully lift one of the hot buns and tap the bottom - it should make a hollow sound
- Remove from the oven and immediately brush with maple syrup to glaze the buns
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely
- To serve, split in half and toast under a hot grill ?
- These buns freeze really well! Just put into a lidded container (the sticky top will stick to a freezer bag!) and defrost thoroughly before using
Some products I used in today's post...
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Hello and welcome to The Cook & Him.
We are Sam (The Cook), Phil (Him) and our little dog Meg. What started with a plan to shed a few pounds back in 2016, soon became obvious that eating healthy doesn’t have to be bland and boring.
So, combining Sam’s 15 years of experience working within Michelin starred restaurants and our love for deliciously healthy food, we’re creating recipes for you to make and enjoy. We’ve added our own unique spin on traditional and contemporary vegetarian and vegan recipes that keep you (and your pets!) healthy and full. And we make sure they just work.
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