Molasses adds a lovely flavour to hot cross buns. It helps to keep the buns moist & is the perfect complement to cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves, the traditional spices for this seasonal treat.
Hot Cross Buns have been a Good Friday treat for as long as I can remember and they’re the bun I look forward to more than any other seasonal bread. The dough and spicing are delicious but like all great seasonal food, the pleasure is as much in the tradition as the taste.
That’s the magic, for me anyway.
We eat them fresh, on the day they’re made, and that’s it for another year.
Everyone has their favourite Hot Cross Bun recipe I suppose, but I have a couple of favourites so this year I combined them into one with the help of a third recipe to create a new recipe for molasses hot cross buns.
(All that to say, there is no shortage of recipes for hot Cross Buns out there.)
The recipe that I grew up with is from The Laura Secord Canadian Cookbook
It’s the spicing in that recipe that I love so much.
I’m partial to molasses in my Hot Cross Buns too. Molasses adds lovely flavour, helps to keep the buns moist and is perfect with the spicing. We have a delicious molasses Hot Cross Bun recipe on this site, but I was in search of a bun with a little lighter texture then my other recipes and one that made a full dozen buns.
For that I turned to Rock Recipes and the ever reliable Barry Parsons for some inspiration. He has an excellent Hot Cross Bun recipe on his site.
From these three trusty sources comes this recipe for wholesome Molasses Hot Cross Buns
Always best eaten on the day they’re made.
Molasses Hot Cross Bun Recipe
Makes 12 buns
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 pkg. dry yeast (1 Tbsp.)
- ¼ cup. soft butter
- ¼ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 egg white, beaten
- 3 cups flour
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. nutmeg
- ¼ tsp. cloves
- 1/2 cup currants
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 Tbsp. water
- Heat milk to lukewarm in a saucepan, remove from heat, pour into a large bowl and add 1 tsp. sugar & yeast.
- In another bowl combine the flour, 2 Tbsp. sugar, salt and spices.
- Add butter to milk mixture then molasses. Whisk in egg and egg white.
- Add about ¾ of flour mixture to milk mixture and stir until combined.
- Scrape dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead in remaining flour mixture then currants. Knead for 5-10 minutes, adding additional flour as required. (Take care not to add too much extra flour).
- Place dough in an oiled bowl, turn to coat, cover with a clean dish towel and let rise until double (about 1 1/2 hours).
- Punch down, let rest for 5 minutes then divide dough into 12 balls. (pull the top of each ball down and pinch to seal.)
- Line a 9”x13” pan with parchment paper and arrange dough balls in the pan so they’re evenly spaced.
- Cover and let rise until double.
- Preheat oven to 350 F
- Just before baking whisk egg yolk and water and gently brush on tops of buns.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes.
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 1 ½-2 Tbsp. milk
Beat together and pipe on cooled buns in a cross.
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