Hot cross bun and butter pudding

What to do with a surfeit of hot cross buns?

A surfeit of hot cross buns…an oxymoron if ever there was one and a situation that rarely occurs in our house! However, such is our appetite for hot cross buns that we do sometimes find we have over-purchased (I have tried making them once and the results didn’t really justify the efforts). Happily I have discovered that just-stale hot cross buns are equally delectable as the main constituent of a bread and butter pudding when I adapted a recipe by Kim Morphew that I came across in Sainsbury’s magazine.

But then the question arises, what wine should you serve with a dish like this, containing as it does such vinicidal ingredients as chocolate, eggs and oranges? Janet Wynne Evans’ series of articles entitled Tastebud Terrors provide a good steer, with a piece on wine and chocolate (Propping up the Bar), wine and oranges (Contemplating the Navel) and wine and eggs (Unscrambling the Egg). Luckily I had a half bottle of Samos Anthemis tucked away under the stairs and the caramelised orange flavours in the wine matched the dish perfectly.

Hot Cross Bun Chocolate Chip and Orange Bread and Butter Pudding

Serves 4

  • 1½ oranges
  • 75g unsalted butter
  • 4 hot cross buns, cut in half
  • 2 tbsp orange marmalade
  • 250ml tub double cream
  • 100ml milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 25g dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp Demerara sugar
  • 1 litre oven-proof dish

Pre-heat oven to 180ºC/gas 4 and grease the dish with a little butter. Zest the orange and mix with the rest of the butter, spread this mix on the one side of the hot cross bun and put marmalade on the other. Cut into thick slices then spread more of the mixture on the cut sides, alternating with marmalade. Sandwich together and arrange in the dish, spread over any remaining orange butter.

Cut the half orange into thin slices and then quarter. Put in a heatproof bowl cover with some water and heat on high for a couple of minutes. Set aside to cool.

Squeeze the juice from the whole orange into a bowl whisk in the cream, eggs, milk and caster sugar and add a little more milk if looks too thick. Pour over the buns and then leave for about half an hour for the liquid to seep into the buns. When ready to put in the oven, drain the orange quarters and scatter over the top of the pudding; scatter over chocolate chips to taste. Finally sprinkle over some Demerara sugar and bake for about half an hour or until just golden. Serve with more cream drizzled over and a glass of liqueur muscat.

Happy Easter!

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