Don’t Leave Empty Handed

by Stefani on 2-November-2007

I’m feeling lately like all I do is blah blah blah about our life, while you, the sweet people who take time out of your busy Mama lives to pop in here and visit, are left with not a whole heck of a lot for your time.

Sorry about that. I will try to do better.

To make it up to you, allow me to offer you some shameless sugar coated carbs 🙂

I’m going to share our recipe for Spiced Cranberry Hot Cross Buns, which, while delicious in and of themselves, are fun to make because then you can talk about your buns.

Your whole family can exclaim things like,

“Oh, Mama, your buns are so sweet!”

“Gosh Mama, you have the nicest buns!”

“Mama, your buns are very squishy…”

You get the picture.

As an aside, we had pulled pork for dinner… which is made from pork butt.

You can imagine the conversations about how it smelled, and how large it was.

Back to the buns though.

This recipe is based on one from a book that my little soux chefs adore, Knead It, Punch It, Bake It!. Their recipe is a basic one for Hot Cross Buns, ours is a souped up, autumnal version.

You will need:

3/4 cup of milk
2 TBSP dry yeast
3 1/2 (OR SO) cups of flour
2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp cloves
2 eggs
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 TBSP softened butter

and for the glaze:

the zest of 1 orange
the juice of half an orange
2 TBSP milk
1 cup confectioner’s sugar (or more, if necessary, to make nice thickish glaze)

In a saucepan, heat the milk to warm, but not hot.

Pour the warmed milk over the yeast and let sit until dissolved. It should be nice and frothy looking, like a rootbeer float.

Then, in a large bowl, mix the flour with salt, sugar and spices. I probably through in a lot of extra spices… I like it spicey, what can I say?

Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients, and pour in the milk/yeast mixture.

Stir, then add in eggs, and mix.

Add more flour, if necessary, to make a firm dough.

Freckled Egg


Now, urn the dough out onto a floured work surface. Spread it out, until it is 1/2 inch or so thick.


Spread the cranberries all over the top, and then knead the dough until they are evenly distributed.

Cover it up with a towel, and surf the net while it risesto about twice the size. (About 2 hours – luck y you if you get that long for surfing!)

Now, punch down the dough, and knead it, a few turns (less than a minute).

Roll the dough into a long cylinder, and cut it into slices. Oh, I don’t know, about the size of an egg.

Round out the slices to form balls, and put them on a greased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. (note – I tried to be all fancy and coat the pan with a sugar/cinnamon mixture. Do not do this, as you will end up with a charred mess and have to cut off the bottoms and explan carmelization to your children)


Cover the balls with waxed paper and allow them to rise untill doubled. (about 30 minutes.)

Just before baking, use scissors to make a cross shape on each bun. Kids love this part. You won’t get perfect crosses, but you will get happy kiddos.

Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees (or until firm and browned.)

Meanwhile, mix the zest, juice, milk, and sugar to make a glaze.


Pour this goo liberally over the buns while hot, and serve them up warm and drippy.

Spiced Cranberry Hot Cross Buns

Now then, your pants are tighter and I’m feeling better about having passed along some useful information 🙂 Have a wonderful Saturday, y’all!

Sarah Jackson November 2, 2007 at 8:54 pm

mmmm. looks yummy.

And I like the blah blah blah. That’s what I come for.

molly November 2, 2007 at 10:22 pm

I’m with Sarah, but your buns do look nice.

greenemother November 3, 2007 at 5:44 am

Thank you, thank you, for that delicious recipe!! The picture of your son holding the egg is beautifully speckled! Have a sweet weekend.

Eren November 3, 2007 at 7:01 am

Oh, this is the kind of cooking boys live for…talk about buns, he, he. Gotta try your recipe. And do you have a fax maching? I have some info. you might be interested in for homeschooling.

Jade November 3, 2007 at 7:04 am

I did food today too! Okay, so what’s the trick to taking good food pictures? Thanks for the recipe! Sounds yummy!

Ellie November 3, 2007 at 8:31 am

Yummo. I know what we’re baking tomorrow! Tasty buns, Stef…. And thanks for all your blah blah blah to help me laugh, learn, cry, laugh, ooh, ah – and realise that other people live in mess too.

Ali November 3, 2007 at 11:57 am

Those sound and look very good indeed! We could do with some bun jokes – maybe it’s time to get baking.

Stephanie November 3, 2007 at 4:15 pm

Mmmm, those look yummy. I’ll have to file this away for the holidays–AFTER my fat jeans fit my buns again, post Halloween carb marathon.

kristin November 3, 2007 at 7:30 pm

okay, i’ll make ’em.

erin November 4, 2007 at 7:36 am

i don’t need tight pants, ok? your buns do look great, though. and i bet that butt was pretty good, too!

Tracy November 5, 2007 at 9:59 am

I like any reason to talk about buns and butt.

Amber November 6, 2007 at 1:51 pm

Oh my, this looks sooooo good! The kids & I would love this one—-anything gluteny and gooey they seem to like to make and eat…

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