Guest chef

Edd Kimber

Also known as 'The Boy Who Bakes', Edd was the first GBBO winner in 2010 and has since become a familiar face on TV and in magazines.

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Hot cross bun loaf

  • Serves 10
  • Prep 30 mins
  • Total time 1 hr 10 mins, plus rising and proving time
4.1/5 rating (8 votes)
Hot cross bun loaf
Hot cross bun loaf

step by step

  • 1Butter a 900g loaf tin that measures 20cm x 9cm x 8cm deep. Line it with baking paper so the excess hangs over the sides of pan (to make removing the loaf easier).
  • 2Put the flours, sugar, spices, orange zest and 1 teaspoon 
salt into a large bowl; mix. 
Add the butter, in pieces, and rub in until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the dried yeast and mix; make a well in the middle of dry ingredients.
  • The hot cross bun is probably the most popular Easter recipe and this loaf sticks to the tried-and- tested flavours. My favourite way to eat it is for breakfast, toasted and spread with salted butter.
  • 3Mix together the egg and milk; pour into the dry ingredients. Mix until it comes together. 
Tip out onto the work surface and knead for 10-15 minutes until it's smooth and elastic (step 1), or for about 10 minutes in a stand mixer. This is a sticky dough but don't be tempted 
to add more flour – it will eventually come together. 
Tip the dough into a lightly greased bowl; cover with clingfilm. Set aside for about 
1 hour until doubled in size.
  • 4Tip the dough out on the work surface; press flat. Add the dried fruit and knead into the dough until evenly distributed. Weigh the dough out into 6 equal pieces and form into balls. Place the balls of dough into the prepared tin (step 2); cover with a piece of lightly greased clingfilm. Set aside for about 
1 hour until doubled in size.
  • 5Meanwhile, preheat the oven 
to 200°C, fan 180°C, gas 6. To make the cross, mix together the flour and enough milk to make a thick, just pourable paste. Place into a piping bag and snip off the end. Once the dough has risen, pipe a cross onto each round of dough 
(step 3). Bake the loaf in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until deep golden. Immediately turn it out; cool on a wire rack. While the loaf is still warm, heat the apricot jam until runny and brush it over the top.
  • Photograph by Kris Kirkham

Get ahead

This is best eaten freshly made, but will keep for up to 2 days. It can also be frozen, unglazed.

You will need

  • 250g plain flour
  • 250g strong white 
bread flour
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • zest of 1 large orange
  • 75g room temperature unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 x 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • 1 large egg
  • 300ml milk
  • 300g mixed dried fruit
  • 2 tbsp clear apricot jam

For the cross

  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 2-3 tbsp milk

+ Nutritional Information