Holy Hot Cross Buns!
When Raj first messaged me “We should make a Paleo Easter dinner!” I stopped what I was doing and thought for a second. Paleo… as in Palaeolithic, Cave Man. B.C. as in BEFORE Christ. Easter is a celebration of Christ. I was sure there was a joke in there somewhere, but I still can't seem to find it. Well, I must be tired from these late nights and early mornings because I got caught up in his enthusiasm. Which happens, Raj has an enthusiasm that is highly contagious. I was thinking of all the spring things I could bake, something with carrots? Cake pops? Raj said “HOT CROSS BUNS!” “YEAH!”
So Hot Cross Buns Are Fruit-Filled Spiced Bread…
I was committed! One problem. What the heck to hot cross buns taste like? I searched to see what others had done, it had been easily 10 or more years since I had eaten one. So reading ingredients I could imagine, but I didn't know for sure.
The solution was easy. I went into a bakery and bought some. Plain old gluten and sugar filled hot cross bun. I'm not the biggest bread fan. But I took a couple bites. Okay. Now I know. It's like a fruit-filled spiced bread.
BE WARNED, there is nothing about this recipe that is quick or easy, it's a healthy dose of sheer dumb luck that this turned out. Honestly, I'm amazed. You know those fails we are going to share with you, I thought this might be the first.
Enter Brittany Angell
Have you been to Brittany Angell's site? If not, I'm about to send you there. I entertained the idea of reposting her recipe but: a) it felt like I was stealing it, and I was plagued with guilt at the thought, b) it is excessively long and a little complex, c) it specifically says NO SUBSTITUTIONS of any sort, but substitutions, and add-ons was how this beautiful abomination occurred.
She has some amazing things on there, Paleo hostess treats! Many recipes are free of allergens, and egg free for those of you that are sensitive. For a bargain $10 per year you can have access to even more of her baking genius! There are a pile of freebies too, and an e-mail club. She has made huge strides with her physical health, undiagnosed for a long time, with many of the same things I am struggling with, so I admire her work not only on a culinary front, but I personally identify with her.
I have baked a handful of Paleo breads, but this one was the most classic, like my Mom used to make, type bread. (My mom doesn't bake bread anymore, 6 months ago her and Dad started eating gluten-free.) While baking it fills the house with that classic yeast bread smell, without the yeast! YUM! Could I do it? Break the rules and make some substitutions to turn Brittney Angell's masterpiece into an Easter classic? Apparently, the answer is yes.
Not for the inexperienced baker, but so worth the effort!
- 2 Tbsp crushed pineapple
- 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 1/2 Tbsp coconut flour
- 1 egg white (yes, you will have 10 egg yolks, I'll come up with something delicious to do with those! Don't you worry!)
- 1 lemon
- 1 lime
- 1 orange
- 1 1/4 cup water **Keep 1 cup of the water from the candied citrus rind to make the gelatine for the bread
- 1/4 cup honey
- **REDUCE Coconut flour by 3 Tbsp replace with
- 2 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp nutmeg
- 1/2 cup diced dried fruit and nuts (without sugar of course) Macadamia, sunflower seeds, golden raisin, cherries, mulberries
- 1/4 cup paleo candied citrus rind **Use Candied Citrus rind water to make gelatine.
- Put Crushed Pineapple, Coconut oil, Coconut flour and Egg white in a food processor or blender, pulse until smooth. The smoother you make it the nicer the crosses.
- Put into a pastry bag, or plastic bag for piping, set aside.
- Wash the Lemon Lime and Orange, I feel better buying Organic for these sort of things.
- Grate or zest the fruit, I used a cheese grater and used short strokes so the pieces weren't too long (you can do this right into the pot).
- Add 1 1/4 cups of water and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 30 min, until rind is tender.
- Drain water into a measuring cup, you need 1 cup hot but not boiling water for the gelatine in the bread recipe. Measure it out, and set aside. If the water is too hot you will end up with jelly chunks in your buns (I think there is a joke in there too, but I can't find it either, I need some sleep!).
- Add the honey, and simmer on low-medium heat, stirring regularly this will take approx 30 min of simmering and stirring until it takes on a sticky candy texture.
- Set aside.
- Preheat oven 375F.
Now you are Ready to start the Bread Base, go to www.BrittneyAngell.com
- A few tips: I freeze my shortening, (actually used grass-fed organic butter, ANOTHER substitution!) and then grate it into the flour mixture instead of cutting it in.
- I REDUCED Coconut flour by 3 tbsp and replaced with
- 2 Tbsp cinnamon.
- 1 Tbsp nutmeg.
- Just before adding the apple cider vinegar I added the diced dried fruit and candied citrus, folding it all together.
- With oiled hands (I used avocado oil) I formed the bread into balls, a little smaller than a baseball and dropped them into a silicone muffin pan, but a regular lightly greased pan would work.
- Put the Buns in your preheated oven and bake for 10 min.
- Now you are ready to cross those buns! Pipe crosses over each bun
- Lower heat to 350F and bake for another 25 min, until they are firm to touch but still give way, like pressing on the part of your hand between index finger and thumb
- Allow to cool COMPLETELY.
- Just like the bread, once completely cooled, store in a plastic bag on the counter, do not refrigerate! You can freeze them.
- Category: Baking
- Method: Oven