Dried Currants, Cranberry, Blueberry and Lemon Hot Cross Loaf

Dried Currants, Cranberry, Blueberry and Lemon Hot Cross Loaf - Candy Coated Culinista

Dried Currants, Cranberry, Blueberry and Lemon Hot Cross Loaf – Candy Coated Culinista

This recipe is one of my bucket list recipes that year after year I let pass me by because I find the recipe intimidating. It’s Good Friday and tis the season to make hot cross buns. Traditionally eaten on Good Friday this sugar spiced bun with the cross on top represents the crucifixion of Jesus. The spices inside signify the spices used to embalm him at his burial. Well the time is now and I decided to use half of the last of the yeast in the house to try this. Good Vibes for my hot cross loaf please …

Yield/Serving: 6
Prep Time: 2 hrs & 30 min.
Cook Time: 25 min.
Difficulty level is: Medium

Ingredients
Loaf

• ½ cup 2% milk
• 2 ¼ tsp instant yeast
• 2 tbsp warm water
• 1 egg
• 2 tbsp granulated sugar
• Lemon zest of one small lemon
• 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
• ½ tsp sea salt
• 1 tsp ground cinnamon
• ½ tsp nutmeg
• 3 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 1/3 cup dried currants, cranberries and blueberries, finely chopped
Glaze (Egg Wash)
• 1 egg yolk
• 1 tsp water
Icing
• ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
• 1 tsp 2% milk, more if needed

Assembly
Loaf

1. Using a small saucepan over medium heat, warm milk until it bubbles and set aside to cool down to a lukewarm temperature.
2. In a small bowl add yeast to 2 tbsp of warm water, stir and set aside.
3. Add egg to the lukewarm milk and add in the yeast and set aside.
4. In a stand-up mixer pour sugar and lemon zest in a rub zest into sugar until it turns yellow and fragrant with your hands.
5. Add the flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter and again rub together with your hands until the butter is incorporated.
6. Use a dough hook and add the milk mixture until dough is smooth and elastic.
7. Flour a cold marble pastry board or counter and add dried fruits by hand and incorporate.
8. Place dough in a grease bowl and cover with saran wrap and allow to rise until it has double in size, about 90 minutes.
9. Remove dough and place on floured marble pastry board or counter and diving into six equal portions.
10. Form into a ball and place in a loaf pan.
11. Meanwhile preheat oven to 375°F and then cover loaf pan with a tea towel and continue to let proof for another 45 minutes.
12. When dough has risen mix your egg wash in a small bowl and brush over loaf.
13. Bake for 25 minutes or when a cake tester inserted comes out clean.
14. Turn out and remove from loaf pan and let cool.
15. Using a medium sized bowl mix confectioners’ sugar, milk and butter and place in a piping bag and make a cross design.
16. Slice up and serve with a nice smear of butter.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I really picked a bad time to be making untested recipes as items are becoming hard to find those basics and I’m not about to line up to do my groceries. My life right now is lots of substitutions and planning meals well ahead or on the fly. I hadn’t seen a bag of flour in four weeks and only saw sugar this week for the first time in three weeks. For a baker it was really tough and I was rationing my baking supplies; but I carried two of the biggest bags of flour on my back home and I’m set for a bit and still rationing my supply very carefully. This recipe came together surprisingly well and I managed to get by only using two eggs and I have some egg whites left back. I had never used my dough hook before and was so happy it did all the work for me. I was expecting the dough to rise more than it did; but it did rise and I’m happy for that. The bread was the perfect texture and spring with little morsels of dried fruit. I will have to work on my icing as the consistency wasn’t up to my standards; but again I am trying to ration confectioners’ sugar also. Next time I will use a bigger pan so these can be a hot cross bun and not a loaf. I will also make the flour cross instead of an icing cross. I am thoroughly happy with how these turned out and will make these again and before another Good Friday comes around. A blessed Good Friday to you and yours.

Grape Tomato Salad with Parsley and Dill

Grape Tomato Salad with Parsley and Dill - Candy Coated Culinista

Grape Tomato Salad with Parsley and Dill – Candy Coated Culinista

Tomato lovers this is a recipe for you. This is super simple and can be switched up with herbs.

Yield/Serving: 4
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 20 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Slightly altered from The New Rules

Ingredients
• 2 pints grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
• Kosher salt
• Ground black pepper
• ¼ cup lemon juice
• 3 medium garlic cloves, minced
• 1 medium shallot, halved and thinly sliced
• ¾ cup lightly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley
• 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
• ½ cup tightly packed fresh dill roughly chopped

Assembly
1. In a large bowl salt halved grape tomatoes with ½ teaspoon of kosher salt.
2. In a small bowl stir together lemon juice, garlic, shallot and half the salt and pepper and set aside for 10 minutes.
3. Add the shallot mixture parsley and oil to the tomatoes and toss well.
4. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
5. Add dill and toss.
6. Transfer to a serving dish with a slotted spoon and serve.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This is a vibrant well seasoned salad that can easily go with meat, seafood or alone. I made a few changes to the recipe by using what I had on hand. I used cilantro instead of dill and red pearl onions instead of shallots. This salad reminds me of a cucumber salad my mom used to make that I loved and it brought back some great memories.

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