I actually find it strange that I am sharing a recipe for a fruit loaf, because frankly I haven’t been a fan of fruit buns or loaves for some time. I remember enjoying yummy, pink icing covered, fruit buns from the bakery when I was a kid but I haven’t had one like that for years. They just don’t seem to make them as good as they used to, I haven’t eaten a hot cross bun for years – I actually can’t remember the last time I did.
This Easter I started wondering about making my own. I have been making my own white and multigrain bread for a while now using an easy recipe that I found last year. So I am well and truly over my fear of working with yeast. I knew that I could do it I just had to find a great looking recipe!
Just before Easter I came across a recipe for hot cross buns by Karen at Citrus and Candy and it really got my mouth watering.
I didn’t actually get time to attempt the recipe until after Easter so, since Easter was over, I decided to make the recipe into a fruit loaf instead of buns. The recipe is large enough that I made two generous sized loaves. We got stuck into one and sliced the other up and put it in the freezer for later!
Secondly each fruit loaf was glazed with a simple sugar glaze. The original recipe called for the hot cross buns to be glazed with apricot jam. I didn’t have any apricot jam so I used the basic sugar glaze instead. This actually resulted in the loaves being quite sticky so in future I would probably omit the glaze – doesn’t really need it anyway!
The result was fantastic – actually it blew me away! I can’t get enough of this fruit loaf now. When I first tasted it I immediately said “this is how I remember fruit buns used to taste!”
We have been enjoying slices of it with butter for morning tea but it is also awesome toasted. I think that I will be having this for breakfast tomorrow!
- 300ml milk
- 60g caster sugar
- 1 heaped tablespoon (approx. 15g) of dried yeast
- 600g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of ground allspice
- ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- 60g of softened butter
- 2 cups (350g) mixed fruit
- 2 eggs
- Put the milk in a microwave safe bowl and heat on high in 10 second bursts until it is just warm.
- Add the sugar and yeast to the milk and whisk to combine – cover this mixture with a tea towel and set aside for about 10 minutes or until it is frothy.
- Sift the flour into a large bowl and then also add the salt, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg – roughly mix.
- Chop the butter roughly into squares and add this to the flour – use your fingers to rub the butter into the flour until there are no lumps of butter left.
- To the flour mix add the mixed fruit, eggs and the frothy yeast/milk mixture and stir to combine.
- Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for around 5 minutes – until it all comes together and is smooth and elastic.
- Transfer the dough to a clean bowl that has been lightly greased, then roll the dough round in the bowl so the dough also becomes greasy - preventing it from sticking.
- Cover the bowl with cling wrap and place in a warm place for around 45 minutes or until it has doubled in size.
- Remove the cling wrap and punch the air out of the dough before turning it out onto a floured surface and lightly kneading.
- Divide the dough into two pieces and shape each into a short log.
- Place the dough into two standard loaf tins and cover and place in a warm place for 15 – 20 minutes (while waiting preheat the oven to 200°C/400 °F).
- Place the loaves into the oven and bake for 25 minutes – bread will be cooked when a hollow sound is heard when the loaf is tapped.
¼ cup of sugar
¼ cup of water
Bring the sugar and water to a low simmer and stir until the sugar is all dissolved before removing from the heat. Brush the loaves with the sugar glaze while they are still warm.