Growing up with my Dad as a pastor, there was always lots going on at Easter time; a mixture of late night and early morning services with many gatherings of friends in between. Easter weekend, to me, has always been a full, heart-warming, contemplative and joyful weekend. I have always treasured the weekend and the significance it’s focus holds to me in my faith.
Food wise, as the days approach, I consistently look-forward to enjoying Hot Cross Buns. My mum makes the BEST Hot Cross Buns. Each year she would churn out batch after batch and I would be waiting, ready to spread butter on the fresh ones, devouring them at the oven door. I guess over the years she has perfected the spice quantities and method to the crispy cross outer, soft pillowy centre… whatever she does; I haven’t found a match out there yet.
But this year I thought it seemed obvious to create a Hungry Cub spin on these favourites. I’m going with the conventional spices and raisin addition, because, well, it’s the way I love it! But if you’re on the raisin-hater side, or the chocolate-lover side, then add or delete as you see fit.
To be clear; these aren’t like your glutenous, white flour, traditional Hot Cross Buns. The lack of gluten means these buns are a closer consistency to muffins (hence “buns”), yet they’re still satisfyingly spicy and raisin-plump delicious like any Hot Cross Buns should be. I will be making more because I doubt this batch will survive to Good Friday!
Hot Cross “Buns” – makes 10 muffin buns
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp honey or pure maple syrup
1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted
1/2 cup almond flour (or ground almond)
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup raisins
2 egg whites
1 tbsp coconut flour, sifted
Preheat the oven to 150’C/300’F. Prepare a muffin tin, either grease or use baking cups (I love the “If You Care” unbleached baking cups!)
In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, coconut milk and honey (or pure maple syrup) until well combined. Add the remaining ingredients and mix together well. Allow the mixture to sit for a couple minutes – the coconut flour will absorb a lot of the liquid so the mixture will stiffen as it stands. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin tray.
Prepare the Cross’ by beating the egg white in a separate bowl until fluffy. Sift in the coconut flour and whisk again until well combined (the apparent quantity will reduce significantly when adding the coconut flour but do not worry, there will be enough!) Transfer the mixture to a piping bag or instrument and pipe a Cross over the top of each mixture portion.
Place the muffins into the oven and cook for 12-15 mins – until browning slightly and spongy to the touch.
Remove from the oven and eat hot (they’re great with some butter) or cool – pretty much whenever you desire them!