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Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

Chocolate hot cross buns, which are less spicy than normal hot cross buns, are popular in New Zealand. Although spice-free buns may be ideal for children that do not like spices and fruit, their flavour can be improved by adding just enough spice to compliment the chocolate, and this recipe does just that.

This recipe uses a bread maker.

Yield 16 buns.

Ingredients

  • 3 teaspoons Surebake yeast
  • ¼ cup milk powder
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 450 gram (3 ½ cups) high-grade flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons (30 gram) butter
  • 1 cup water (250 ml)
  • Approximately ¾ cup chocolate chips

Spices and peel:

  • 2 tablespoons glazed peel
  • 1 teaspoon all spice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • pinch of cloves

Ingredients for crosses:

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar
  • At least 5 tablespoons water

Ingredients for glaze

  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 45 gram sugar

Method

  1. Measure all the ingredients, except the chocolate chips, into the bread maker's bread pan.
  2. Set on the "dough only" or "pizza" cycle and start.
  3. After the cycle is finished, leave the dough for half an hour in the unit to rise.
  4. Knead the dough lightly down.
  5. Divide dough into 4 parts and divide each of these 4 pieces into 4 again, so that you have 16 pieces of dough. (Some people use a scale to ensure even division).
  6. Add 2 teaspoons choc chips (a 10 ml medicine measure works well) to each piece of dough and work it in lightly.
  7. Shape each piece of dough into a ball and place in a greased oven pan.
  8. Cover the tray with plastic and leave to rise in a warm place, until 1½ times the original size. This can take about an hour.
  9. Crosses: Combine the ingredients for the crosses in a small snap-lock bag and mix well. Snip off 1 tiny corner of the bag. Pipe the paste over the buns to form crosses.
  10. Glaze: combine ingredients for the glaze and boil together for 1 minute. Brush mixture twice over buns.
  11. Bake in a warm pre-heated oven of 200°C for approximately approximately 12 to 15 minutes, until brown but not burned. They should sound hollow when tapped with a finger.
  12. You can glaze the buns if you like sticky chocolate hot cross buns.

Serve hot from the oven, either as is, or with butter or hazelnut spread.