I get a little hot cross bun obsessed at this time of year. You know those people who complain about hot cross buns being in the shops straight after Christmas? I’m not one of those people. I start eating hot cross buns WAY before Easter.
So when I needed to make something for my work Easter bake off (yes it’s a thing) I immediately thought of hot cross buns. Over the years I’ve baked hot cross buns, chocolate hot cross buns and even chocolate hot cross bun pudding so this time I thought hot cross bun cupcakes would fit the bill.
These cupcakes are easy to make and filled with the same lovely spices as actual hot cross buns. What makes them (almost) better than a hot cross bun is that the cross on top is made with spiced cream cheese frosting.
- 100ml buttermilk
- 175g butter
- 175g self-raising flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 175g light soft brown sugar
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 100g ground almonds
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1 orange, zested
- 100g sultanas
- 1 apple, peeled, cored and grated
- 2 tbsps apricot jam, mixed with a splash of boiling water
- 50g cream cheese
- 50g icing sugar
- 25g butter
- 1/2 tsp mixed spice
- 1. Heat oven to 180c and melt the butter in a saucepan. Use a little of the butter to grease a 12-hole muffin tin.
- 2. Mix the flour, baking powder, sugar, spice, almonds and a pinch of salt together.
- 3. Whisk the eggs, 3/4 of the orange zest, melted butter and buttermilk together then add the dry ingredients and beat until even.
- 4. Stir in the dried fruit and apple gently by hand and then pour the mixture into the tin. Bake for 20 mins until a golden brown colour and if a knife comes out clean when tested.
- 5. Cool for 10 mins in tin and then on a cake rack.
- 6. Once the cupcakes are cool, brush the tops with the apricot jam.
- 7. Beat the spiced frosting ingredients together along with the rest of the orange zest. Pipe the buttercream into the crosses across the top of each cupcake.
- Tip: If you don't have buttermilk make it yourself by adding a squeeze of lemon juice or white vinegar to the milk and leaving it for five minutes.