An Ali Miller Easter Treat!

Try these amazing chocolate hot cross buns, a very special Easter treat from Ali Miller!




For the dough and Crosses

  • 225ml semi-skimmed milk

  • 50g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

  • 1 large egg

  • 450g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting

  • 2 tsp fast-action yeast

  • 50g golden caster sugar

For the flavouring and glaze

  • 140g raisins

  • 100g chocolate, 70% cocoa solids

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 4 tbsp golden caster sugar

  • 100g plain flour


  1. To Make the dough: Heat the milk in a pan until steaming. Remove from the heat, and drop in the butter. After a couple of mins, beat in the egg and half the orange zest. The liquid should be just warm for step 2.

  2. Mix the strong flour, yeast, 1 tsp salt and the sugar in a large bowl, then tip in the liquid and stir to make a soft dough. Flour the work surface and your hands, then knead the dough until smooth and elastic. Oil a large bowl, sit the dough inside it, then cover with oiled cling film. Rise in a warm place for about 1 hr or until doubled in size.

  3. Put the raisins and half the orange juice in a small pan and simmer for a few mins, Cool completely. Break the chocolate into a food processor with the cinnamon and 2 tbsp sugar, then pulse until very finely chopped. Mix in the rest of the zest.

  4. Turn the risen dough onto a floured surface and press it out to a large rectangle, Scatter it evenly with the chocolate mix and the raisins, which should have absorbed all of the juice (drain them if not). Roll the dough up around the filling, then knead it well for a few mins until the chocolate and fruit are evenly spread.

  5. Grease then line a large baking sheet with baking parchment. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. Shape into buns by pinching each ball of dough into a purse shape,  Put the buns, smooth-side up, onto the baking sheet, leaving room for rising. Cover loosely with oiled cling film and prove in a warm place for 30-45 mins.

  6. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. To make the paste for the crosses, gradually stir 6-7 tbsp water into the plain flour to make a smooth, thick paste, then put in a food bag and snip off the end to about 5mm. Pipe the crosses, then bake for 20-25 mins until the buns are risen and dark golden brown.

  7. Mix the rest of the orange juice with the remaining sugar and let it dissolve. Brush the syrup over the buns while they are hot, then leave to cool.

  8. Then pour yourself a tea and enjoy your special Ali Miller Easter treat!!!

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