Hot cross buns

Probably you know these typical Easter buns with cross on the top. In my recipe they are stuffed with soaked in dark rum raisins, cranberries and candid citrus peel. Cinnamon is essential of course. They are often baked in closed pan what gives one big shape of them and quite square look. I decided to save their round shapes however they are very close one by one. The cross on the top and transparent glaze are present too. Enjoy on the Easter breakfast or any other day!

 

15 buns

 

 Ingredients:

  • 5 teaspoons active yeast
  • 1 ¼ cups (300 ml) lukewarm milk
  • ¼ cup (50 g) butter
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) sugar
  • 2 cups (320 g) bread flour
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons (180 g) whole wheat bread flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 75 g raisins
  • 75 g dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons candid peel
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup dark rum

Flour paste:

  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons caster sugar
  • 1/3 cup water

Glaze:

  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon gelatine
  • 1 tablespoon water

 

 

Place raisins in a bowl and pour the rum over until covered. Set aside for 1 hour.

Make dough: in a medium bowl mix together yeast, ½ cup (100 ml) lukewarm milk and 1 tablespoon sugar. Let stand for 15 minutes until frothy. Heat the rest of milk with butter until melted. Cool slightly. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine both flours, remaining sugar and salt. Add yeast mixture, egg and the milk with butter. Mix on medium speed until dough is combined (6-8 minutes). The dough is too wet and will not become tight by mixing. Transfer it to a floured surface and knead by hands about 5-6 minutes until smooth and glossy. Once the dough is ready place it in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place for 1-1.5 hours until doubled in size.

Drain raisins. Add to them cranberry, candid peel, lemon zest and cinnamon. Mix together.

Place dough on a floured surface and shape by hands into flat rectangular. Spread the filling over and start to knead the dough until  all is evenly incorporated (about 10 minutes). Shape the dough into ball, place it in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place for 1-1.5 hours until doubled in size.

Once risen divide the dough into 15 pieces (I used the weight to divide evenly). Shape each piece into a ball. Line the large baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the balls on the sheet leaving ½ inch (1 cm) free space around each. Let stand in a warm place for 30 minutes to rest.

Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C) by fun forced mode or 430°F (220°C) by traditional oven mode.

Make flour paste: mix all ingredients until smooth. Spoon the paste to a piping bag ended with medium plain nozzle. Pipe the cross on the top of buns. Bake for 20-25 minutes until brown and sound hollow.

Make a glaze: mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Heat the bowl in a double boiler or microwave until mixture is liquid. Brush the top of buns immediately after baking. Cool on a wire rack.


 
 

Category: Yeast cakes.

Tags: cranberry, lemon, raisins, yeast.

Cassis lavender madeleines

Madeleines – these small French cookies shaped as shells recently landed here often. Why? They are easy in preparing, require only short baking and are tasty. Moreover – endless possibility of flavours inspires me to create new and new. Today version is lavender and black currant. In the place I live in currants are very hard to find so I used French currant liqueur Creme de Cassis. You may add currant juice instead of. Lavender takes over the taste however somewhere appears the currants flavour too. Enjoy!

 

20 pieces bigger madeleines or 30 standard sized

 

 Ingredients:

  • ½  cup + 1 teaspoon (120 g) butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) Creme de Cassis liqueur
  • ½  cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  •  ½ cup + 2 tablespoons (100 g) all purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons (60 g) almond flour
  • 1 ¼  teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 ½  tablespoons dried edible lavender

 

 

 

Melt the butter. Remove from the heat, add liqueur. Set aside.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat together eggs, egg yolk and sugar until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). In separated bowl mix together flour, baking powder, salt and lavender. Add to egg mixture and mix with rubber spatula until combined. Stir in melted butter, mix with spatula. Place dough mixture into the fridge for overnight.  

Next day preheat oven to 380°F (190°C) – preferably on convection oven mode. Grease madeleine pan/s with melted butter and place to the freezer for 10 minutes. Then fill each hole with dough. Place the madeleines pan on the cookie sheet and put together on the upper oven shelf. Bake for 15 minutes (bigger and ticker madeleines) or 10 minutes (standard sized). They should be set and springy when touched in the center. Cool on a wire rack. Before serving you may pour icing over or dust with icing sugar.

 

 

Category: Cookies.

Tags: almonds, blackcurrant, lavender.

Blood orange and lime no-bake striped cheesecake

No bake cheesecake. It could be made just as two layer orange lime dessert but I decided to make more fancy look and divided each part to three what got six layer cheesecake. This effect of course is connected with more effort and time but the result is pretty and interesting so why not. Ready to eat cold cheesecake is subtle in taste however the sourness of fruits is detectable. Do not be suggested by the taste of lime puree during preparation – it will fade significantly to the end. I used blood oranges in orange layer – by using ordinary oranges the colour will not be pink and the taste more intensive. Tangy – bitter lime and sour – sweet orange created together delicate, subtle and refreshing dessert. Enjoy!

 

You should make this cheesecake a day before because it must spend the night in the fridge to become proper structure.

round spring pan 8 inch

 

 Base:

  • 150 g tea biscuits
  • ¼ cup (+ 1 tablespoon optional) butter, melted

Cheesecake (two layers):

  • 500 g cream cheese
  • 285 ml whipping cream
  •  1 ½ cups (240 g) icing sugar*
  • 2 limes
  • juice of ½ lime
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 blood orange
  • 3 tablespoons blond orange juice (of 1 ½ fruits)
  • 2 x 3 teaspoons gelatine

Top decoration:

  • 150 ml whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons icing sugar
  • sliced orange and lime

 

 

Make the base: process biscuits in the food processor until very fine (sand texture). Add melted butter and mix until well incorporated. If the biscuits are very flaky you need to add more butter. Line the bottom of a spring pan with parchment paper. Spoon the mixture evenly pressing lightly with a spoon. Place to the fridge.

In a sauce pan place one blond orange (unpeeled), add water to cover and cook until tender (about ½ hour). In a second sauce pan place two limes (unpeeled), add water to cover and cook until tender (about ½ hour). Once ready, drain, peel fruits and remove the white thick core from the orange. Peele fruits blend in a blender to the puree (separately orange and limes). Add juice of ½ lime and 2 tablespoons icing sugar to lime puree, mix.

In a bowl of a stand mixer place cream cheese, whipping cream and 1 ½ cups icing sugar. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Divide the mixture to half. Add orange puree to one part, mix. Add lime puree to second part, mix.

Divide the lime cheese mixture into three. Transfer one third to another bowl. Place 1 teaspoon gelatine to a small bowl and pour 1 tablespoon milk over. Set aside for 5 minutes then heat in a double boiler or microwave until liquid. Add 1 tablespoon lime cheese mixture to liquid gelatine and stir together in order to strengthen the gelatine. If they combined successfully add it to the rest of lime cheese mixture and mix until smooth. Pour prepared lime cheese layer over cookie base in the pan, shake the pan to even the surface and place to the fridge to set (10 minutes).

Divide the orange cheese mixture into three. Transfer one third to another bowl. Place 1 teaspoon gelatine to a small bowl and pour 1 tablespoon blood orange juice over. Set aside for 5 minutes then heat in a double boiler or microwave until liquid. Add 1 tablespoon orange cheese mixture to liquid gelatine and stir together in order to strengthen the gelatine. If they combined successfully add it to the rest of orange cheese mixture and mix until smooth. Pour prepared orange cheese layer over lime cheese layer in the pan, shake the pan to even the surface and place to the fridge to set (10 minutes).

Repeat two steps above four more times to receive six layer cheesecake (the pink layer will be on the top). Place to the fridge for overnight.

The next day carefully remove the cheesecake from the pan and place on a serving plate. Beat whipping cream with icing sugar until stiff. Spoon it to the piping bag ended with big star nozzle and pipe cream rosettes on the top of cheesecake. Decorate with fruit slices.

 

*my cakes and desserts are not very sweet. You may try every layer on every step of preparing and add more sugar if you want, remembering that sugar is less detectable in frozen/cooled desserts.

 

 

 Category: No bake cakes.

Tags: glutenfree, lime, orange.

Cruffins

The word ‘cruffin’ is made of ‘muffin’ and ‘croissant’. This is a kind of bun shaped like a muffin and the pastry is like sweet yeast enriched with butter exactly like typical croissants or other French buns. On cruffin we can see all the layers of pastry divided by butter and at the same time feel the softness of yeast dough. On the outside the dough is crunchy, delicate and flaky, inside is soft and fluffy like a bun. We cannot detect butter in the taste and the flesh is more tight than in classic croissant. Cruffins are delicious, they could be plain or filled with cream, custard, fruits, chocolate and your favourite ingredient. Here I present the version with homemade vanilla custard. Enjoy!

 

12 cruffins

 

 Ingredients:

  • 2 ¾ cups (440 g) bread flour
  • 5 teaspoons dried yeast
  • ½ cup (125 ml) lukewarm milk
  • 1/3 cup (75 g) sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ¼ cup (62 ml) lukewarm water

...

  • about 1 cup (220 g) butter, softened

Vanilla custard:

  • 1 ½ cups (360 ml) milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or seeds of one vanilla bean
  • 3 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon (60 g) granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened

 

 

Make dough: in a medium bowl mix together yeast, milk and 1 tablespoon sugar. Let stand for 15 until frothy. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine flour, remaining sugar and salt. Add yeast mixture and melted butter, slightly cooled.  Add water and mix on medium speed until dough is smooth (8-10 minutes). Once the dough is ready set it aside, cover and let stand in a warm place for 1 hour to rest and rise. Once ready, transfer dough to the lightly floured surface, punch down, knead shortly by hand, shape into a ball and let to rest for further 30 minutes covering with tea towel.

Make custard: pour the milk and vanilla bean paste in medium sauce pan and heat until boil. In a bowl beat the egg yolks with corn starch and sugar until light and creamy. Pour boiled milk over egg mixture, stirring constantly. Return the mixture to the pan and cook over low heat, stirring, for 4-5 minutes until starts to thicken and bubble. Remove from the heat and beat in the butter. Transfer to a bowl. Cover the surface with a cling film to prevent forming a skin. Leave to cool.

When the dough is well risen place the remaining 1 cup butter in a bowl of a stand mixer and beat few minutes until light and fluffy.

Grease the classic muffin pan with butter. Divide dough into six equal pieces. Roll out each piece very thinly in a shape of long rectangular with slightly rounded corners. Spread butter evenly over the dough and roll it tightly into a log starting on the shorter side. Cut out the log into half lengthwise. Place both pieces cut side up and shape into a snail covering the end underneath (see pictures below the text). Repeat the same with all five remaining pieces of dough. Place each snail into one hole of muffin pan. Let stand the pan in a warm place for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).

Bake cruffins for 20-25 minutes (until slightly browned). Cool on a wire rack.

Spoon the custard to a piping bag ended with big nozzle. Punch a hole on the bottom of each cruffin, put there the nozzle and fill with custard until it reaches the top of cruffin.


 
 

Category: Yeast cakes.

Tags: vanilla, yeast.

Chocolate madeleines

Next madeleines on my blog. And no, this is not boring. Since these cookies are so delicious and have practically endless flavours’ possibilities why should not I bake them in another and another tastes? Today taste is just a must-have: chocolate. I added to the dough two types of cocoa powder and in combining with remaining ingredients they created clear and velvety chocolate taste. Before serving I dipped each cookie in melted chocolate and covered with crushed almonds. They turned out really good. Enjoy!

 

30 standard sized madeleines

 

 Ingredients:

  • ½  cup + 1 teaspoon (120 g) butter, melted
  • ½  cup (100 g) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¼  cup + 2 tablespoons (60 g) all purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder (I added 3 tbsp unsweetened baking cocoa powder and 2 tbsp very dark alkalized cocoa powder)
  • 7 tablespoons (70 g) almond flour
  • 1 ¼  teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch of salt

Topping:

  • 100 g dark chocolate
  • 2-3 tablespoons finely chopped almonds

 

 

 

Melt the butter. Remove from the heat and set aside to coo slightly.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat together eggs, egg yolk and sugar until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). In separated bowl mix together flour, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder. Add to egg mixture and mix with rubber spatula until combined. Stir in melted butter, mix with spatula. Place dough mixture into the fridge for overnight.  

Next day preheat oven to 380°F (190°C) – preferably on convection oven mode. Grease madeleine pan/s with melted butter and place to the freezer for 10 minutes. Then fill each hole with dough. Place the madeleines pan on the cookie sheet and put together on the upper oven shelf. Bake for 10 minutes (standard sized cookies). They should be set and springy when touched in the center. Cool on a wire rack.

Topping: melt the chocolate in bain-marie or microwave. Dip each cookie in melted chocolate and scatter with almond crumbs. Place on the wire rack to set.

 

 

Category: Cookies.

Tags: almonds, chocolate, cocoa.