Hot cross buns Photo: Reader's Digest
60g active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup warm milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup shortening
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
4-1/2 to 5 cups flour
1 cup dried sultanas
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 to 6 teaspoons milk
1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, shortening, eggs, salt, cinnamon, allspice and 3 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in sultanas and enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
3. Punch dough down. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll out to 1/2 an inch in thickness. Cut with a floured 2 1/2 inch biscuit cutter. Place 2 inches apart on lightly greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
4. Brush with egg white. Bake at 180° for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
5. For icing, combine the sugar, vanilla and enough milk to achieve piping consistency. Pipe a cross on top of each bun.
Makes: 1 dozen.
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