California Prune & Orange Hot Cross Buns

A healthy and inspirational take on the traditional Hot Cross Bun

Makes: 10Prep Time: 1 hour 35 minutesCook Time: 25 minutes


  • For the buns:
  • 500g strong flour 50/50 wholemeal/white
  • 200ml green tea
  • 7g yeast
  • 7g salt
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 150ml milk
  • 140g California Prunes, finely chopped
  • 50g candied orange peel, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 cardamon pods, seeds only, lightly crushed
  • For the crosses and glazing: 
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 75g flour
  • 3tsp water
  • runny honey for glaze


  1. Prepare 200ml Green Tea using 2 green tea teabags left to infuse for 5 minutes.
  2. Mix together the flour, yeast and salt. Make a well in the bottom of the bowl and pour in the milk and green tea.
  3. Using your hand or a dough hook on a stand mixer, bring the wet and dry ingredients together to form a ball of dough. Knead on the work surface or in the mixer to develop the gluten. Work the dough for a good 10 minutes at least in order for it to be smooth and stretchy and ready for proving.
  4. Cover the bowl and leave to prove to double in size.
  5. Scoop out the dough and stretch over the work surface until it is about the size of an A4 sheet of paper. Sprinkle the spices and scatter the fruit over the dough.
  6. Fold the dough over itself to encase the spice and fruit then knead the dough to distribute the spice and fruit through it.
  7. This quantity of dough will make 6 large Hot Cross Buns or 10 small ones.
  8. Portion off the dough and roll into balls. Put the dough balls onto a floured baking tray to prove again, 1 – 2 cm apart so that as they prove up they start to touch each other.
  9. Leave in a warm place to double in size again and pre-heat your oven to 180oC.
  10. Brush the buns with beaten egg and a pastry brush.
  11. Make up a paste of the flour and water, and put into a piping bag. Snip off the end of the bag, always make a smaller hole than you think you need to because the paste will spread as the buns bake in the oven.
  12. Pipe a cross onto each bun and then bake for 25 minutes in the preheated oven.
  13. Once removed from the oven, loosely cover with cling-film to retain the moisture; this helps make a lovely soft hot cross bun
  14. Glaze with runny honey after the buns have come out of the oven and cooled for 10 minutes.


Peter Sidwell

Peter Sidwell

California Prune Board Ambassador Peter Sidwell, is a chef, baker, TV presenter, author, and innovator of all things food related. Peter has been a chef all his working life and over the years has developed a simple, fresh and innovative way of cooking which focuses on the importance of fine ingredients and technical know-how to ensure the best results. Peter has travelled the world cooking, talking and demonstrating his approach and explaining how and why it works so well for all manner of food offerings. Peter works both with chefs, consumers, food producers and retailers to innovate, create process or refine procurement. Working from his new innovation centre in England's beautiful Lake District, Peter and his team create exciting, attractive and mouth-watering new recipes with digital content, showcasing the delicious flavour and versatility of California Prunes.