Having made the traditional hot cross buns many times before, I wanted to experiment and try something different this year. Of course, I thought of green tea, one of my favourite flavours. I came across quite a few recipes that paired these green tea hot cross buns with red bean paste or sweetened red beans, but I love the pairing of green tea and white chocolate. The bitterness of the tea flavour works well with the sweetness of the white chocolate and it’s not so far off from making chocolate hot cross buns. I bought some hot cross buns from my local bakery to compare with and these hot cross buns are just as or even more so, fluffy inside. Perfect warm, with a thin smothering of butter or even red bean or black sesame paste if you’re feeling a bit adventurous.
600g Plain Flour, Extra for Dusting
14g Dried Instant Yeast
100g Caster Sugar
25g Matcha Green Tea Powder
1 1/2 tbsp Mixed Spice
1/8 tsp Salt
250g White Chocolate Chips
50g Unsalted Butter
300ml Full Cream Milk, Room Temperature
2 Eggs, Lightly Beaten
Flour Paste for the Crosses
90g Plain Flour
4-7 tbsp Water
30g Caster Sugar
1. In a large bowl, sift the flour, caster sugar, matcha green tea powder, mixed spice and salt. Then add in the yeast and stir until mixed well.
2. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low-medium heat. Then add in the milk and heat until the mixture is lukewarm.
3. Pour the lukewarm milk and butter mixture into the dry ingredients, along with the beaten eggs and mix slowly until the dough starts to combine then add in the white chocolate chips and mix until the dough forms into a ball.
4. Take the dough out of the bowl and onto a floured surface, and knead the dough for around 10 minutes or until the dough is nice and smooth. Place the dough into a large lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside in a warm place for around 1 to 1.5 hours or until the dough doubles in size.
5. Once the dough has doubled in size, take it out of the bowl and knead the dough back to its original size. Split the dough into 12 equal parts (roughly 100g in weight) and roll into a ball. Then place onto a lined baking tray roughly 1 cm apart and allow the dough to rest for another 30 minutes. Once the dough has doubled in size again or near doubled in size, preheat the oven to 170?C.
6. To make the crosses, combine the plain flour and water in a small bowl. Add a tablespoon of water at a time until it’s just runny enough to pipe. Place the paste into a piping bag and pipe onto the buns.
7. Once the dough has doubled in size, place in the oven to bake for around 20 to 25 minutes or until they have browned on the top. Remove from the oven and place the buns onto a cooling rack.
8. To glaze the buns, combine the water and caster sugar into a small saucepan and heat over low heat. Bring to the boil, stirring if necessary so that the sugar dissolves and boil for around 3 to 4 minutes. Brush the glaze onto the warm hot cross buns then serve the buns warm or at room temperature.
One day I had the urge to make Cranberry and White Chocolate cookies, I think I’ve seen it in stores before but I had this idea that dried cranberries were small and diced. I was searching high and low for these cranberries but to no avail. I don’t even think they exist now. So instead I bought the usual dried cranberries which are a bit chunky. I came across this recipe from Rachel @ Simple Girl and they looked absolutely delicious.
Cranberry Oatmeal White Chocolate Cookies (Simple Girl)
Makes 4 dozen cookies
1 cup butter or margarine (softened) – I used margarine
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar (1/2 cup used)
1/2 cup granulated/caster sugar (1/8 cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (or white, whole wheat flour) (I used all whole wheat flour)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups oats
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup white chocolate chips (Reduce this to 1/2 cup)
1. Heat oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
2. Beat together margarine and sugars until creamy.
3. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well.
4. Add combined flour, baking soda and salt. Mix well.
5.. Stir in oats, dried cranberries and white chocolate chips.
6. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto a parchment lined cookie sheet.
7. Bake 8 – 9 minutes. (I prefer to slightly under bake until the tops just turn slightly brown.)
I liked this recipe but even after reducing the brown sugar and caster sugar it was still very sweet! I think it was because both the cranberries and white chocolate are already sweet. If I were to make these again, I would reduce the white chocolate to 1/2 cup as I put in 1 cup when I made these and the white chocolate was too plentiful. The oats can be slightly big so you may want to add them to a food processor give it a couple seconds whizz so the oats are a tad smaller.
These cookies with oats aren’t your typical crispy/crunchy type, because of the oats it makes it slightly soft so if you’re not fond of it then this might not be for you. Nonetheless it’s a tasty treat that makes you feel less guilty about eating them and very easy and quick to make.