Monday, April 6, 2009

Cointreau-Laced Hot Cross Buns Via the Breadmaker

Fruit and Cointreau glaze mixture:
1/3 cup Cointreau
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/3 cup dark raisins
¼ cup mixed citrus bits (lemon/orange) or glazed fruit mixture
1/3 cup currants
Soak fruit in Cointreau for 30 minutes or more. Drain and reserve liquid.
In the breadmaker pan, assemble these ingredients:
1 cup 2% or whole milk
2 eggs
1 ¼ tsp salt
¼ cup honey
¼ cup melted, cooled butter
3 ¾ cups Canadian all-purpose flour
¾ cup Canadian Whole Wheat Flour
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 ¼ tsp cloves
½ tsp ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg
(Add spices then lightly stir into flour)
1 ¾ tsp breadmachine yeast

For glaze: 3 tbsp sugar mixed with reserved liquid.
For crosses: ½ cup icing sugar mixed with ½-1 tbsp milk.

Place the breadpan in the breadmaker, choose the Dough cycle and press start. When the “Add Ingredient” alarm sounds on the breadmaker, add the drained fruit. When Dough cycle is complete, remove dough and let rest under a tea towel for 10 minutes. Divide dough into 20 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a round ball and flatten slightly. [To shape into buns: Pull dough piece from the side and tuck underneath, like a mushroom, several times. On a breadboard, cup the round under the palm of your hand, with your fingernails lightly touching the board, and roll the round in a circular motion until a smooth ball is formed.] Place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. To prevent a skin from forming on the dough, be sure to keep pieces covered that are to be shaped AND those that have been shaped. Once all pieces have been shaped, cover them loosely with spray-greased plastic wrap and a tea towel and let rise in a humid, warm, draft-free place until doubled in size. They may take 1 – 2 hours to rise completely because spices like cinnamon, cloves and ginger can inhibit the rising process. Once risen, flatten each round very gently and brush with milk. Bake in the oven at 325 F for 15-20 minutes, turning at halftime. Watch out they burn easily. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Fruit Glaze: Meanwhile, in a small saucepan mix the reserved fruit liquid with 3 tbsp sugar. Heat on low, stirring constantly until mixture bubbles. Remove from heat. With a pastry brush, brush over slightly cooled buns.

Icing for crosses: After the buns have cooled, decorate with crosses. Mix ½ cup icing sugar ½ -1 tbsp milk. Mix in milk with sugar, gradually. It should be like a smooth paste that you can drizzle from the end of a fork.

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