Spiced Stout Sourdough Hot Cross Buns
Makes about 10 buns
160ml Guinness (or other stout, or water)
75g sourdough starter
¾ tsp ginger
¾ tsp cinnamon
¾ tsp allspice
400g strong white flour
100ml hot black tea
1 egg, beaten
25g melted butter
½ tsp salt
(plus 1tbsp plain flour for the crosses and 1tbsp sugar for the glaze)
The evening before baking: whisk together the stout and the sourdough starter in a large bowl and stir in spices and 125g of the strong white flour. In a separate bowl mix the raisins, sultanas and the hot black tea. Cover and leave overnight, in the morning the sourdough batter will have swollen.
The next day: mix the beaten egg and melted butter through the plumped up fruit, then stir the fruit into the spiced beer sourdough batter. Mix in the rest of the flour, sugar and salt and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Then stretch the dough and leave at room temperature for 30 minutes, covered with a clean, damp tea towel. Stretch the dough again and leave for another 30 minutes. Take the dough out of the bowl to fold, then return it to the bowl and leave it for an hour. Fold the dough again and leave once more for around 2 hours. Now the dough can be shaped.
Here’s a short video clip, from Weekend Bakery, showing the stretch and fold technique.
Weigh out roughly 100g balls of dough. Roll them in your hands then pinch them into a rough boule shape. Place them on a baking tray lined with baking parchment so that each bun is just touching. Leave the buns at room temperature, covered with a tea towel, for 3-4 hours until fully risen.
When the buns are nearly ready, heat the oven to 180C fan. Mix a little plain flour with water to form a paste, the consistency needs to be soft enough to pipe. Pipe crosses over the hot cross buns and then bake the buns for 25 minutes until golden. Mix a tablespoon of sugar and a tablespoon of boiling water and brush over the buns while they’re still hot to give that traditional shiny glaze.
Once cool break them apart, cut in half, toast, butter and enjoy.