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    John Whaite’s Cranberry Orange Buns

    Perfect Partner for this recipe: Starbucks Verismo Pike Place Roast, the gentle acidity in the coffee matches with the sweet tang of the orange, as well as the gently creamy nuttiness of the macadamia nut, and the sourness of the cranberry.

    Here's what you'll need...

    500g strong white flour
    10g salt
    10g caster sugar
    10g fast-action yeast
    200ml tepid water
    100ml milk
    1 egg
    40g salted butter, at room temperature
    Flavourless oil
    50g salted butter, softened
    100g dark brown soft sugar
    100g macadamia nuts, bashed in a bag with a rolling pin to small chunks
    100g dried cranberries
    Zest of 2 medium oranges
    70g icing sugar
    70ml water
    Dough scraper
    Deep roasting tray about 23~30cm/9~12 inches

    Here's how it's done... Step 1

    To make the dough, place the flour in a bowl and stir in the salt and sugar. Add the yeast and stir it through the flour. In a jug, beat together the water, milk and egg, then add half to the flour, mixing well with a fork. Slowly add the remaining liquid, then the softened butter. Using your hands, squeeze the dough in the bowl for a minute or so.


    Step 2

    Turn the contents of the bowl out on to the worktop and knead for 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic, and when you press a floured finger into it, the dent disappears. The dough will be wet, but try not to incorporate any more flour – you don’t want the bread to be tough. Use a dough scraper to knead the dough if you find this easier.

    Drizzle about 2 tablespoons of flavourless oil into a clean bowl, roll the dough in it so it is well oiled, then cover the bowl with cling film and leave to rise in a warmish place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.


    Step 3

    After an hour, tip the dough out on to a floured worktop and roll into a rectangle of about 30~32cm – keep moving the dough around so that it doesn’t stick to the surface. Spread the butter on the dough, then sprinkle with the sugar, macadamia nuts, cranberries and zest.


    Step 4

    Roll the dough up tightly from the longer edge. Trim the ends, then slice using a sharp knife, or serrated bread knife, into 12 equal discs. Arrange these in 4 rows of 3 in the deep roasting tray. Cover with cling film then allow to rise for a second time for 45 minutes.


    Step 5

    Preheat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7. To make the glaze, put the icing sugar and water into a small saucepan and place over a high heat. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer for a minute or so.

    After the second rising time, bake the buns for 20 minutes or until nicely browned on top. As soon as you remove them from the oven, brush liberally with two-thirds of the glaze, then remove from the tray and place on a wire rack to cool.

    Allow to cool completely before separating the buns and brushing with a final smothering of the glaze.



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