Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Hot Cross Buns, read it again, we’re not even kidding – the scales certainly aren’t!
Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Hot Cross Buns
Past Australia Day (and even sometimes before) supermarkets and bakeries shamelessly take advantage of the fact that we (we’re willing to speak for the majority) love Hot Cross Buns. It’s a running theory in our studio that our love of the Hot Cross Bun is the reason there’s a chocolate variety; for the people who hate orange peel – which is everyone in our studio other than Lucy, and the people who don’t like dried fruit – the crazy people.
Let’s be honest, Hot Cross Buns don’t need any improving, but if anything is going to make them better, it’s Nutella. These babies are truly delicious, and like most things they’re infinitely more delicious when you make them yourself.
- 2 packets active dry yeast
- 4 tablespoons of Nutella, melted
- 1½ cups lukewarm milk
- ½ cup caster sugar
- 5 cups plain (all-purpose) flour
- 4 tablespoons cocoa
- 1 tablespoon mixed spice
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- 60g butter, melted and cooled
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- Nutella, extra
- ½ cup plain (all-purpose) flour
- ⅓ cup water
- 2 tablespoon + ¼ cup water
- 2 teaspoons gelatine powder
- ½ cup caster sugar
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Add Nutella and lukewarm milk to a large bowl and stir well to combine, sprinkle with yeast and leave aside to activate. The yeast is active when the mixture looks thick and frothy.
Sift together the cocoa, flour, mixed spice, and cinnamon into the bowl. Add the sugar, chocolate chips, melted and cooled butter, and lightly beaten egg.
If you’re using a stand mixer, fit the dough hook and mix on low speed until the ingredients start to come together. Increase to medium and continue to mix until it comes together into a smooth and elastic ball of dough.
If you don’t have a stand mixer, use a wooden spoon to bring the ingredients together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
The dough will be slightly sticky, but you’ll still be able to roll buns without the dough sticking to your hands.
Place the dough into a lightly greased bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave in a warm place for about an hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
Punch down the dough and split into three equal amounts. Split each again into five equal amounts of dough, you’ll have fifteen equal-ish sized pieces of dough. Use your thumb to make an indent in the middle of a piece of dough and dollop a teaspoon sized amount of Nutella in the middle. It’s tempting at this point to say “A teaspoon?! More like a tablespoon…all of the Nutella in all of the Hot Cross Buns.” These delightful morsels are rich and delicious and you really don’t need more than a teaspoon of Nutella – promise! Pinch the dough around the Nutella to seal it inside the dough, and roll into a ball.
Line a high sided baking tray (though if you don’t have one a slice tray will work) with baking paper. Place each ball in the tray, you might need to squish them in. Cover with the damp tea towel and leave in a warm place for about 30 minutes until the rolls have risen back up to about double their size again.
Pre-heat your oven to 200°C (400°F).
In a small bowl mix together the flour and water to create a thick paste. Place in a zip lock sandwich bag, snip off a corner, and pipe crosses onto your buns.
Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, or until your buns are light and spring back when gently pressed on top.
While your buns are baking, add the gelatine to 2 tablespoons of water and leave for a few minutes to bloom.
Add the sugar and water to a heavy bottomed saucepan and cook over low heat. Stir continuously, brushing down the sides of the pan with water to remove any sugar crystals and prevent the syrup from crystallising. When the sugar has dissolved, add the gelatine and continue stirring until dissolved.
When your buns are completely baked and still hot, brush with the warm glaze.
Serve warm, and if you’re feeling dangerous, with a smear of Nutella.