Hot Cross Loaf

By MiNDFOOD

Hot Cross Loaf

Hot Cross Loaf. Get creative this easter and try this fun, festive loaf. 

 

Makes 1 loaf

50g caster sugar, plus 1 teaspoon

125ml water, warmed (40-45°C)

125ml milk, warmed

1 tbsp dried active yeast

450g plain flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 heaped teaspoons ground mixed spice

75g currants

75g sultanas

75g candied peel, chopped

1 tablespoon orange zest

50g butter, melted

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon dark treacle or dark molasses

 

Cross

4 tbsp plain flour

1 tbsp caster sugar

3-4 tbsp water

 

Sticky Glaze

2 tbsp sugar

2 tbsp water

 

Stir the teaspoon of sugar into the water and milk. Add the yeast, cover and leave in a warm place until a thick frothy surface (about 2cm) has appeared, about 15-20 minutes.

Sift the flour, salt and mixed spice into a warm bowl, adding the 50g of sugar, currants, sultanas, mixed peel and orange zest. Make a well in the centre. Pour in the butter, egg, treacle, and yeast mixture. Stir to mix and work by hand to a sticky dough. The dough has to be wet, loose and sticky to get a soft texture.

Knead and work the dough for 8-10 minutes on a clean surface until smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a greased tin 20cm x 10cm x 7cm loaf pan, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for 45-60 minutes until doubled in volume. The ideal temp is between 20 and 30°C. the warmer it is the faster the dough will rise.

While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 180°C and make the piping dough. Mix the flour with the sugar and water to a smooth paste and spoon into the piping bag. Mark a cross down the middle of the loaf. Pipe some paste into the indentation.

Place the loaf in the preheated oven and cook for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and when tapped underneath, sound hollow.

While the loaf is in the oven, make the sticky glaze by melting the sugar in the water over a low heat. Brush with the glaze to give shiny sticky finish. Leave on a wire rack to cool slightly.

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