The Crumb and the Restless
I think I’ve hit my limit. It’s hard to admit, but could five delicious bunly months almost be too much? Even the fact that there are two posts about this topic is astonishing in itself.
From the commencement of the 2014 season (in December 2013) at my local multi-national provedore, to the heady days of Easter and quick-fire discounting at the checkout I’ve had my share of Hot Cross Buns.
But it’s May and the buns have now returned to the little piece of heaven they’re baked in for another year… Except they haven’t.
My local is still stocking them 3ft high on entry. Even the competitor down the road has continued the supply, albeit sans cross and now labeled and fruity and convenient breakfast buns – but I see through their charade.
I’m beginning to suspect they have made the jump… to everyday food.
So why not take advantage? Why suffer when your heart’s desire is there for the taking – well, for me it’s beginning to feel a little stale (see what I did there). Sure I can stretch to four months, but now I need a break so I can experience the joy of devouring hot cross buns anew in the scorching heat of January next year.
So I’m farewelling the buns with the proper send-off they deserve – almost bread and butter pudding, with a twist.
Bun and Butter Pudding
I’m using the buns from my previous post, but this recipe works splendidly with slightly stale korvapuusti, pulla, brioche or your everyday sandwich bread. A surprisingly stunning version can also be made with stale rye bread, molasses and cinnamon – deliciously peculiar.
3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
¾ of a cup of caster sugar
600 mls of milk
1 teaspoon of vanilla
½ a teaspoon each of cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg
Pinch of salt
6 stale hot cross buns, split in two
25 grams of butter
Lingonberry or other jam of your choice
Beat the eggs and extra yolk with the sugar, salt and spices, but not too vigorously to avoid too many bubbles. Incorporate the milk and vanilla and set aside.
Split the buns in half and butter each side liberally and dot with the jam. Place the buns butter side up I to a baking dish.
Gently pour in the custard mixture covering the buns and allow to sit for 5 minutes to allow the buns to absorb some of the liquid.
Place the baking dish into a larger baking tin filled with enough hot water to reach two thirds of the way up the dish.
Bake at 160c for 40-45 minutes until the custard is set and the buns a burnished gold.
Best served warm, but is equally delicious cold the next day for a sneaky mid-morning snack.
If you like things a little zesty, grate some lemon zest in to the custard mix before baking for a surprising addition.
Oh and happy May-ster?