Spiced Honey Buttered Hot Cross Buns

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Speaking of kitchen, I know I've been remiss but it's that time again-time for In My Kitchen where I show you a few things that are lurking about in my autumnal kitchen. This is the brainchild of Celia and it is a monthly event roundup.

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Have a look at this beauty! I have read all about spaghetti squash on American blogs and was excited to find some on my travels. This was bought at the Sunraysia farmers markets in Mildura. I can't wait to try it out-the texture of the squash inside is apparently just like spaghetti!

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I'm squirreling away garlic now that summer is over. This garlic is also from the Sunraysia markets in Mildura and was grown in Red Cliffs.

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Sugar plums, oh how I love thee! I actually bought two boxes of these super sweet little plums but one box went into the oven to dry so that I could experiment on them. More on that soon ... ;)

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Red curry and green curry pastes. The green curry paste recipe is here and I can't wait to share the red curry paste recipe with you. If you'd have asked me if I would be making my own curry paste, I would have looked at your quite oddly.

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I got this container of Chiltepil from Atilla Yilmaz of La Lupita. As we were leaving, he slipped my friend Girl Next Door and I a container of this and it's a deliciously crunchy mix of sesame seeds, pepitas, hot chilli and spices. We've been putting this on everything!

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There are also some lovely gifts-the shoe and fan silicon molds and cupcake bag are from reader Joanne who has started her own blog! And the Bride of Frankenstein is from Matilda who bakes the best Italian biscuits :)

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I also bought these props from a vintage fair in Marrickville, not strictly for the kitchen but I couldn't resist the vintage frames and clock. The tea towel in the main picture was bought from Brydie's mum's stall.

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I also bought these plates from a recent trip to Jordan. They were a steal at between $4-$8 JOD which is between $6-$10AUD a piece and I'm busily editing my Jordanian stories so that I can put them up.

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This dead sea salt is also from Jordan where I sunk my tired limbs into the sea with 33% sodium. We also got to visit Petra which was beautiful and ate the most delicious hummus.

And if you had looked at what else I had in my kitchen, you would have found these hot cross buns. No Easter is complete for me without a soft, pillowy hot cross bun, slathered in butter. I usually make a different version every couple of years and I decided that this year would be one with plenty of buttered honey spread in the centre. To do this, I used honey instead of sugar and used the leftover speculaas spices from a Daring Bakers challenge. We made a fragrant mixture of cinnamon, cloves, mace, ginger, nutmeg, white pepper, star anise, cardamom and ground coriander which give the buns a really gorgeous aroma while baking. These buns can have chocolate chips or dried fruit in them, you choose or they can even be plain. For me, I wanted to recreate the sensation when you butter a crumpet and then drizzle honey over it.

So tell me Dear Reader, are you all about the Easter buns or the chocolate during Easter? And do you like the buns from the inside or the outside (am I even making sense there? ;) )? And do you have any frequent typos?

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Other Easter treats:

Cinnamon hot cross buns

Mocha hot cross buns

Easter bun and Easter egg pudding

Easter egg brownies

Chocolate hen's nests

Easter cupcakes

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Spiced Buttered Honey Hot Cross Buns

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An original recipe by Not Quite Nigella

Makes 16

For the buns

  • 2 tablespoons instant dried yeast

  • 1/2 cup honey (I used Stefano's river blossom honey)

  • 1.5 cups lukewarm milk

  • 4.5 cups plain flour

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 50g butter melted

  • 1 egg lightly beaten

  • 1 teaspoon speculoos spices*

  • 2.5 cups of chocolate chips or 1 1/2 cups dried sultanas/raisins

For glaze:

  • 1/4 cup honey

  • 1/4 cup hot water

  • 1 teaspoon gelatine or 1/2 gelatine leaf soaked in cold water

For crosses:

  • 75grams/2.6 ozs white chocolate or white fondant

  • Serve with honey butter (recipe below)

*You can make your own speculoos spices-the recipe is here or just use ground cinnamon

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Step 1 - Mix yeast, sugar and warm milk in a bowl and stir to remove any lumps. Set aside for 15 minutes until it becomes frothy.

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Step 2 - In a large bowl, or the bowl of your mixer, sift flour and salt. Make a well in the centre and mix in the yeast mixture, butter, egg, cinnamon and one third of the chocolate chips or raisins.

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Step 3 - Knead dough for 5 minutes if using a mixer or 8 minutes by hand until elastic and place in a greased bowl covered with cling wrap in a warm area (or sit your bowl in a larger bowl of warm water). Leave for 1 hour to 1.5 hours until doubled in size.

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Step 4 - Using your fist, punch down the dough and add the remaining chocolate chips or raisins. Knead lightly and divide into 16 balls. Place close together on a lined or greased baking tray. Cover with cling wrap and allow to rise in a warm place for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.

Step 5 - Bake for 20-25 minutes until done. While it is baking, get the glaze ready. For the glaze, simply mix all three ingredients together shortly before the time is up on the buns.

Step 6 - When buns are ready, brush with glaze. I like to do this quite generously and glaze the sides too but this does make them quite sticky to handle.

Step 7 - I rolled out some white fondant and cut it into strips to put crosses on top. Or you can melt white chocolate and pipe it as a cross on top.

Step 8 - To make honey butter, place 100g/3.5ozs of softened butter in a bowl with 3-4 tablespoons runny honey. Using a fork or knife, combine the two (if the butter is soft, it will be easy, if not, wait for it to soften) and butter the inside of the warm buns.

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