A poem and a recipe

Seeing my daughter’s poem has given the courage to share my Good Friday poem with you. I wrote it a long time ago but I remember it every Good Friday.

THE CROWN

Bright are the crowns of kings with diamonds
And heavy as ceremony the gold
That rings their anointed brows.
But for Him,
The King of Kings and Lord of Lords,
Only a crown of bitter thorns,
In mockery wrought by scoffing men.
Harsh thorns, that tear His hair and pierce His flesh;
Yet not so sharp, as sin’s thorn in his heart,
Or man’s heart-blindness to His saving love.
The blood in streams pours down His tender face.
Behold, the Man: the thorn crowned King of Grace.

*****     *****     *****     *****     *****

And so as it is Good Friday tomorrow I am also going to share with you the Hot Cross Buns I made this year.

I decided to use the ‘no-knead artisan’ method as found here http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/2014/01/artisan-bread.html for making and cooking them.

I have added metric measurements to the recipe but they are not exact conversions so use either imperial or metric measurements – don’t mix them.

Hot Cross Buns

With added photos of better looking buns made the following year.

You take 8 oz (200 g) of wholemeal and 8 oz (200 g) of white bread flour.

0249-flour

Add 1 tsp of easy yeast and 1 tsp salt. (I would have used twice as much yeast if making them in the normal way).

0249-Yeast&salt

And 2 tsp cinnamon and 1 tsp mixed spice. (I like my buns spicy and am especially fond of cinnamon).

0249-spice

And mix together in a large bowl.

You put 2 oz (50 g) butter and 3 oz (75 g) dark brown sugar in a saucepan and melt gently.

0249-butter&sugar

Add 8 fl oz (200 ml) milk and 2 fl oz (50 ml) water. (The water is extra becaus of the ‘no-knead artisan’ method).

0249-liquid

Beat 2 eggs

0249-twoeggs

and add all the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients

0249-liquidadded

and mix well.

0249-mixture

Add 5 oz (125 g) mixed dried fruit (I didn’t have any ‘dried fruit’ so I used sultanas instead and also added the zest of an orange – because I had one!)

0249-fruit

Mix again

0249-finalmixture

cover with cling film and leave for the 12 hours or more in a warm place. Since the weather is mild, I simply left the bowl on the table in the kitchen overnight.

When the dough is ready put a large covered casserole in the oven at 450 deg F or 220 deg C for 30 mins.

0230-pot

Meanwhile, shape the buns.

As the buns would need more room than a loaf I decided to cook them in two lots.

0249-nine

and

0249-seven

As you can see I am not very good at shaping! but also I didn’t want to handle the dough too much.

Decorate the top with crosses.

I decided to make the crosses by piping on a flour and water mixture which I haven’t tried before as I am not much good at piping either.

0249-flour&water

Here They are

0249-crossed

I decided that next time I will make the mixture a little thicker.

Next year I made half quantities and made the cross flour mixture thicker and they were better

2015 buns with crosses

Add buns to pot and cook for 20 mins. (I wasn’t sure how long to do them for but guessed 20 minutes and I think it was about right.)

Uncover and cook for a further 5 mins. (Again this was approximate but seemed to be okay.)

Brush with a sugar and water mixture while still hot to glaze.

0249-nineglazed

As you can see they have risen well and squashed together.

The seven which were more widely spaced have still joined but more loosely

0249-sevenglazed

But the next years look so much better

2015 buns cooked2015 buns glazedOf course I had to eat one just to show you the inside even though it is not Good Friday until tomorrow.

0249-texture

And yes! I did add butter after I had taken the photograph. Yumm! Rich and spicy.

Of course if you used only white flour, white sugar and less spice you could make a much blander version but would you want to?

I do like this no-knead method of making yeast dough. Less effort and it rises so well.

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