No one can deny that hot cross buns are the shi*t. I think I’m an unbiased fan of all sweet breads, but hot cross buns are right up there with the best of them. I like mine soft, cinnamonny and without any citrus peel. Hot cross buns would arrive in our kitchen 2-3 weeks before Easter and vanish quickly after hitting the bench. My family are all HCB lovers, so you need to be quick. As someone who loves summer, hot cross buns are the consolation prize for Autumn arriving and the warmer days slipping away. They’re a reminder that there a good things about the cool weather, and warm soft spicy bread laden with salty butter is certainly one of them.
Hot cross buns are held on a high pedestal and have a pretty well-established rep amongst those with a sweet tooth. So it comes as no surprise that where you buy them, how you enjoy them (to toast or not to toast) and most certainly when they’re available (this seems to be for almost half the year now!), comes into play. A bakery near me actually sells ‘spiced buns’ outside of the Easter period – hot cross buns without the cross!
Now don’t get me wrong, I love them just the way they are, however, IF you were feeling a little fancy or a little bored (or you bought too many) this hot cross bun bread and butter pudding recipe is the perfect way to spice up your hot cross bun life. Similarly, if you are a bread and butter pudding fanatic, this is a great reinvention of that classic dessert.
Some people like to get really decadent and add in choc chips, so I’ve included that as an optional addition. Also, if you had a vanilla pod handy, use that instead of the vanilla extract.
- 6 hot cross buns
- 50 g butter , softened
- 3 organic eggs
- 1 cup full cream milk
- 1/2 cup double cream
- 2 tsp vanille extract
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup brown sugar (plus 2 additional tbsp)
- 1/4 cup Choc chips (optional)
- Vanilla ice cream or custard (to serve)
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a medium-sized baking dish with butter (I used a 27 x 18cm rectangular baking dish).
Spread butter inside the buns, then cut or tear them into rough chunks (I cut each bun into 4-5 pieces), and place them in the baking dish (at this point add the choc chips if you are using them).
In a small bowl whisk eggs, milk, cream, vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar together. Pour this mixture over the hot cross buns, pressing them down gently. Leave to sit for 5-10 minutes.
Sprinkle with a little more cinnamon and the rest of the brown sugar, and then place in the oven.
Bake for around 35 minutes, until golden brown and crispy on top. Serve with cold custard or vanilla ice cream.