The lazy woman's method, using machine-made dough.
1 medium egg, beaten and made up to 250ml/9 fl oz with tepid water
450g / 1 lb strong white bread flour
2 x 15ml / 2 tbsp dried milk powder
1 x 5 ml / 1 tsp salt (I use less and it still tastes fine)
50g / 2 oz caster sugar
1 x 5 ml / 1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 x 5 ml / 1 tsp ground mixed spice (I use a bit more as we like spices)
½ x 5 ml / ½ tsp ground nutmeg
50g butter, cut into small pieces
2 x 5 ml / 2 tsp easy blend dried yeast
After the dough programme is completed, add
75g / 3 oz currants
50g / 2 oz chopped mixed peel
Paste for crosses
40g / 1½ oz melted butter
40g / 1½ oz plain flour
75 ml / 3 fl oz water
Beaten egg to glaze before baking
4 x 15 ml / 4 tbsp milk
4 x 15 ml / 4 tbsp water
75g / 3 oz caster sugar
Put all the dough ingredients into the bread pan in the following order:
egg/water mixture, salt, butter, flour, dried milk powder, spices, sugar, yeast.
Select your machine’s dough programme and start.
When the programme is finished, turn the dough onto a floured work surface and gently knead in the currants and mixed peel.
Divide the dough into 12 pieces for large buns, 18 for smaller ones, knock back each piece and shape into rounds.
Place on greased baking sheets (I use non-stick, so merely flour them) and cover.
Leave to rise in a warm place for 40–60 minutes, or until doubled in size.
Cut crosses in the tops of the buns and glaze with the beaten egg.
If you want to give the buns a traditional finish, mix the paste ingredients together and pipe onto the crosses, using a fine nozzle.
Bake in a preheated oven at 220o C / 425o F / Gas Mark 7 for 10–15 minutes.
As soon as the buns are removed from the oven, place on a cooling rack.
Heat the milk, water and sugar together and bring to the boil.
Boil for 1 – 2 minutes, then brush over the buns.