At this time of year, the smell of hot cross buns (or, I suspect in some cases, hot cross bun scented air fragrance) wafts through every supermarket, and if we are lucky enough to have the time and patience to make hot cross buns, through our homes too.
But what if you are having a busy day at home, yet would love to have the air scented with that hot fruit-and-spice fragrance? Wouldn't it be lovely to be able to reward yourself at the end of the day with a cup of tea and a slice of warm hot cross bun flavoured bread?
Well if you have a bread machine, it couldn't be simpler. All it takes is a few tweaks to your bread machine's standard white loaf recipe - I'll not give a detailed recipe for that, as every machine is different.
Use the recipe that comes with your machine, plus the following ingredients:
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
about a quarter of a nutmeg, finely grated
1 measuring cup full of dried fruit - you can use dried mixed fruit, or mix your own. As we don't care for mixed peel or cherries, I used a third of a cup each of currants, raisins and sultanas.
Add the spices at the same time as you add the flour, then use the basic loaf setting to make your bread.
To add the fruit, if you are lucky enough to have a model with a fruit and nut dispenser, use that. Or if your machine makes a beep at "adding extra ingredients" time, use that. If it has neither, set a buzzer somewhere to remind you to throw the fruit into the machine after about half an hour of mixing. Then just let the machine do its thing.....
So, it's not bun shaped, it's not got a cross on the top and it isn't glazed. But it tastes and smells just like a hot cross bun, and it makes toast to die for! And if you aren't as addicted to your bread machine as I am, and find it gathers dust in a corner, at last here's something that will make it earn its keep!
For the first time in ages I'm joining in with #CookBlogShare at Supergoldenbakes