March is the month of the #FreeFromEaster treats. A whole month of freefrom treats perfect for a spot of Easter baking with the little people! It’s brought to you by the lovely lot behind #FreeFromPancakes & if Feb was anything to go by you’re going to be spoilt for choice!
Here is my contribution – Apple Date & Walnut Hot Cross Buns (Glutenfree, Vegan & CitrusFree) They are completely Peachick Friendly as they contain no gluten, soy, egg, milk or citrus peel like traditional Hot Cross Buns. Perfect for celebrating a #FreeFromEaster with the whole family… and best of all the kids can get involved with making them too!
These are quite crunchy on the outside but lovely and soft on the inside. The apricot glaze works really well with the slightly spicy rolls, although to be honest you could put more cinnamon and walnuts in the dough (But I live with a fussy cinnamon hater!!).
According to Daddy Peacock hot cross buns are one Easter essential that he absolutely cannot go without. As soon as they are sold in the shops (this year Jan 2nd!) there are regularly packets devoured. But, he is the only one. The Peachicks and I are allergic to oranges. Thankfully the Peachicks’ reactions are fairly mild and just involve sore skin but its still not nice for them. As always these pesky allergies like to keep us on our toes and this week both Elodie and I have had a few mishaps. Neither of us are great with wheat but now hayfever season is upon us we need to stay off it. AND apparently I now can’t eat sesame or celery – I took the lid of the veggie box and the smell of the celery made me pass out. Yep the world of allergies in this house just keeps getting weirder!
Last year I developed these Apple & Cinnamon Scones as a hot cross bun alternative for the Peachicks. They made a great addition to Easter afternoon tea are really quick to make and were a big hit but were just not quite the same! So this month when #freefromEaster came around I knew what I had to try – a hot cross bun suitable for everyone in this house to eat! The bonus of these is they are really easy for the kids to make because the dough is really soft and easy to mix with little hands.
The buns themselves are formed by using a large cookie scoop (which is quite good for development of handwriting muscles in preschoolers!) and the icing cross is piped on afterwards. Now I know there is discussion about what the cross should be made of… well in this house it is icing because otherwise the Peachicks pick it off!
I think they are kinda cute with their not quite the same dome shapes! Apparently they look like little hibernating hedgehogs as they have a few little crispy pointy bits! They were very yummy too – but then you can’t really go wrong with apple, dates, walnuts and cinnamon can you?! I did try some cherry & almond hot cross buns the other day. They were very nice but possibly a step too far for the more traditional hot cross bun eaters out there!
Obviously in case of nut allergies just leave the walnuts out and either add more dates or leave the apple chunks a bit bigger so they stay crunchier!
Recipe for Apple Date & Walnut Hot Cross Buns (Glutenfree, Vegan & CitrusFree)
I am going to try these again before Easter as I had to use Doves Farm G/F Bread Flour. This has rice flour in which sets off mine & Elodie’s eczema a treat but I had used up the last of my Free From Fairy Wholegrain GlutenFree Flour. Once I have remade these with that flour I will update the recipe!
These Apple, Date & Walnut Hot Cross Buns contain no gluten, soy, egg, milk or citrus peel like traditional Hot Cross Buns. Perfect for celebrating a #FreeFromEaster with the whole family! And best of all the kids can get involved with making them too! These are quite crunchy on the outside but lovely and soft on the inside. The apricot glaze works really well with the slightly spicy rolls, although to be honest you could put more cinnamon and walnuts in the dough if you wanted to!
- 550 g Gluten Free Bread Flour (Doves Farm)
- 2 tsp Dried Quick Yeast
- 2 tbsp Sugar
- 4 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 1 tbsp Ground Chia Seeds
- 350 ml Dairyfree Milk (Koko Dairyfree)
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 25 g Chopped Walnuts (or bashed!)
- 50 g Chopped Dates
- 1 Medium Apple Finely Diced
- Apricot Jam
- 50 g Icing Sugar
Preheat the oven to 200C and finely chop the walnuts, apple and dates.
Add the dry ingredients, flour, sugar, cinnamon, yeast and ground chia seeds to a large mixing bowl (or stand mixer with dough hook attachment) and stir until just combined.
Pour in the oil and dairyfree milk and mix together into a soft dough. You can use a wooden spoon if you want to but little person hands work just as well!
Cover with a damp tea towel and rest for 40minutes.
Now comes the fun part - tip the dough out onto a floured board and squish & knead the dried fruit, apple chunks and walnuts into the dough.
Next use an ice cream scoop to form the hot cross buns - it makes them a really cute dumpling shape! You can use hands for a more abstract shape.
Rest again for 60mins under a damp tea towel before baking at 200C for 40-45mins.
Allow them to cool just enough not to burn little fingers and then paint on apricot jam using a pastry brush. Sprinkle over some chopped dates, walnuts, chocolate chips or pretty Easter-y sprinkles to decorate.
While they cool completely, beat together 50g icing sugar and just enough dairyfree milk to form a thick but pipeable paste.
When the Hot Cross Buns are completely cold, then pipe on the icing sugar/milk mixture into a cross shape.
Pin Apple, Date & Walnut Hot Cross Buns (Glutenfree, Vegan & CitrusFree) for Later:
More #FreefromEaster – Baking with Kids Recipes
Here’s the other very lovely, talented lot who are also taking part in the #FreeFromEaster baking with kids extravaganza!
We love a good linky here at The Peachicks’ Bakery and here are all the ones we have linked these hot cross buns up to!
ALSO DONT forget to give an old recipe a makeover and then hop over to our very own linky The #RecipeRefurb Challenge to join in!! The first one closes soon! Any kind of recipe goes it just has to have had a makeover in some way – new photos, new recipe template or new ingredients – its up to yoU!