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Hot Cross Muffins

While walking on the beach with my friend Judith Anne, I was discussing my recipe of the month for our website and that I hadn’t decided on one that would suit the Easter holidays. She said, “Hot cross buns!” and before we knew it, the recipe was developed, a quick and easy muffin with golden raisins and cranberries. When I got home, I put together these muffins, which are similar in flavor to the traditional yeast bun, but less time-consuming to make. The muffins are moist and keep well.

  • softened butter, for the muffin cups
  • 2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • grated zest of 1/2 an orange
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 cup mixed dried currants, dried cranberries, and golden raisins
  • 1 cup milk
  • 8 tablespoon salted butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  1. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Butter twelve 3-by-1½-inch muffin cups.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, orange and lemon zests, salt, cinnamon, and allspice. Add the dried fruite and mix with your fingers, breaking apart any fruit that is stuck together.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, melted butter, egg, and vanilla. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Do not overmix. Using a ½-cup food portion scoop or a spoon, transfer the batter into the prepared muffin cups.
  5. Bake until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. (These muffins will be flat on top, without the traditional hump.) Let the muffins cool in the pan on a wire cooling rack for 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool completely on the rack. Mix together the lemon juice and confectioners’ sugar to make an icing. Drizzle the icing over the muffins to serve.

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