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Hot Cross Buns

2-cups 2% milk (room temperature)
1/2-cup sugar
1-tbsp dry instant yeast
1 1/2-tsp finely grated lemon zest
1-tsp pure vanilla extract
4 1/2-cups all-purpose flour
1-tsp salt
1/2-tsp ground nutmeg
1/4-tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/4-cups dried currants (or dried cherries, golden raisins, dried cranberries or mixed dried fruit)

Hot Glaze
1/2-cup sugar
2-tbsp lemon juice
2-tbsp water
Hot Cross Buns


3/4-cup icing sugar, sifted
1-tbsp lemon juice

Mix together the milk, sugar, yeast, lemon zest and vanilla in the bowl of a mixer (or by hand) and then let stand 5 minutes
Add flour, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and currants; blend
Using a hook attachment, knead until elastic but dough still sticks to the bottom of the bowl
Or, if by hand, stir until stiff, then turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until elastic but still sticky
Place in a large, lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap
Set in a warm and draft-free place for about 1 1/2 hours
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and cut into 12 equal pieces
Roll each piece into a ball
Place into a greased 9x13 inch cake pan
Cover pan loosely with plastic wrap and let rise for 45 minutes
Preheat oven to 350*F
Bake buns for 35-40 minutes until a rich golden colour
While buns are baking, prepare the hot glaze

Over medium heat, stir sugar, lemon juice and water in a small pot until sugar has dissolved
When buns just come out of the oven, poke holes over top of buns with a bamboo skewer
Brush buns with the glaze and allow to soak in.
Let buns cool in the pan

Beat icing sugar and lemon juice until thick
Pipe a cross onto each bun
Store the buns in the pan until ready to serve
Best served that day, but can be frozen

Makes 12 buns