Saturday, May 4, 2013

Holy Saturday, Hot Cross Buns

We enjoyed Holy Saturday liturgy this morning. I love this liturgy, it's maybe my favorite of the year. The colors have been changed from purple to white, vestments all white, alter cloth all white, the censor with the bells is brought back, Christ is almost risen. Father throws bay leaves and rose petals instead of incense. It's beautiful. We typically have bread and fruit after liturgy with coffee and wine and a few guests. I make hot cross buns using the Artoklasia bread recipe that we use in the Latia services. It's a delicious, fasting, sweet bread and top it with frosting, can't be beat. Today we had over only clergy and their families, it was fun to hear the men banter and tease each other and compare war stories of bad services and embarrassing moments with the Bishop. The women bonded a little more and my kids had fun playing with the babies that were visiting.

Artoklosia or Hot Cross Buns
Recipe adapted from "A Lenten Cookbook" from St. Nectarios Press, WA 1982

2pkgs. Compressed or dry yeast
1/2 cup water
3/4 c sugar (or brown)
2 t salt

Dilute yeast in 1/2 cup water. Add sugar, salt and stir. After yeast proofs add:

1/4 c oil (olive, vegetable, etc)
1 1/2 c water

Then mix together:

3 c flour
1 tsp cinnamon or nutmeg or cardamom or some other spice combo

Add flour and the spice to the liquid. Stir until the batter is smooth. Add:

2 1/2 - 3 cups flour

Mix until the dough is soft but firm. You want a soft dough, don't add too much flour.

If making Artoklosia divide dough into 5 parts and shape into 5 round loaves. Place on a greased cookie sheet. Use scissors to cut crosses in the tops of each loaf.

Hot Cross Buns do the same thing but divide into about 24-32 individual rolls place on 2 greased cookie sheets. Use scissors to cut crosses in the top of each bun.

Rise until double.

Bake in 400 degree oven for 15 minutes for the large loaf and maybe 10 for the buns. Keep an eye on them, don't do like me and try baking them, then run back to church, then come home and find them overbaked. Not a great plan.

Remove from pans and cool on racks for 10 min. For the loaves brush tops with water mixed with honey or brown sugar. For the buns make some butter cream (or in my case almond milk/margarine) frosting glaze and glaze each bun with a cross. Be generous with your frosting, your guests won't mind. This recipe typically impresses most people (not when overbaked) and they go back for more. I have always used cinnamon, but this year our priest wife makes her Artolkasia with nutmeg and it's so yummy.

The 3 remaining buns from this morning. I used 1/2 wheat flour, but I would use less next time or more sugar or more frosting. They tasted too "healthy" to me.


BaronessBlack said...

Wishing you and yours all the Blessings of the Easter-tide!

by the creekside said...

Happy Pascha to you and your family!

Jane G Meyer said...

Christ is Risen! Thanks for the recipe, Anna! Blessings...