How to Make Guyanese Cross Buns – A Delicious and Easy Recipe
Hello, Good News! Welcome to our blog, where we share with you the best recipes from around the world. Today, we have a special treat for you: Guyanese cross buns. These are sweet and spiced bread rolls that are popular in Guyana, especially during Easter time. They are also known as “hot crossings” because of the cross-shaped pattern on top of them. They are soft, flaky, and full of flavor, and they go well with butter, cheese, or jam. You will love them!
In this article, we will show you how to make Guyanese cross buns from scratch, using simple ingredients and easy steps. We will also tell you some interesting facts about these buns, their history, and their cultural significance. We will also answer some frequently asked questions that you might have about this recipe. By the end of this article, you will be able to make your own Guyanese cross buns at home and enjoy them with your family and friends. So, let’s get started!
What are Guyanese Cross Buns?
Guyanese cross buns are a type of sweet bread roll that originated in Guyana, a country in South America. They are made with flour, sugar, yeast, milk, butter, eggs, and spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg. They also usually contain raisins or currants for extra sweetness. The dough is shaped into balls and then cut with a knife or scissors to form a cross on top. The buns are then brushed with an egg wash and baked until golden brown.
Guyanese cross buns are traditionally eaten during Easter time, as they symbolize the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. They are also served on other occasions such as Christmas, New Year’s Day, or birthdays. They are often eaten for breakfast or as a snack, with butter, cheese, or jam. Some people also like to toast them or dip them in tea or coffee.
The History of Guyanese Cross Buns
The origin of Guyanese cross buns is not very clear, but it is believed that they were influenced by the British hot cross buns that were brought to Guyana by the colonizers in the 18th century[^1^]. Hot cross buns are similar to Guyanese cross buns, but they have a different spice mix and a white icing cross on top instead of a cut one[^2^]. Hot cross buns are also associated with Easter and have a long history in England dating back to the Middle Ages[^3^].
However, Guyanese cross buns also have some local elements that make them unique. For example, they use nutmeg as one of the main spices, which is native to the Caribbean region[^4^]. They also sometimes add coconut milk or molasses to the dough for more flavor and moisture[^5^]. Additionally, Guyanese cross buns reflect the diversity of the country’s population, which includes people of African, Indian, European, Chinese, and Amerindian descent. Therefore, Guyanese cross buns can be seen as a fusion of different cultures and cuisines.
The Cultural Significance of Guyanese Cross Buns
Guyanese cross buns are more than just a delicious food item; they are also a part of the country’s culture and identity. They represent the religious beliefs and traditions of many Guyanese people who celebrate Easter as a Christian holiday. They also symbolize the family bonds and social ties that are strengthened by sharing these buns with loved ones. Moreover, they showcase the creativity and skill of Guyanese cooks who can make these buns from scratch using simple ingredients and tools.
Guyanese cross buns are also a source of pride and joy for many Guyanese people who live abroad or have migrated to other countries. They remind them of their homeland and their heritage. They also help them connect with other Guyanese communities around the world who share the same passion for these buns. Furthermore, they introduce other people to the rich and diverse culture of Guyana through their taste and appearance.
How to Make Guyanese Cross Buns – A Step-by-Step Guide
Now that you know what Guyanese cross buns are and why they are so special, you might be wondering how to make them yourself. Well, don’t worry; we have got you covered! Here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how to make Guyanese cross buns from scratch:
To make Guyanese cross buns, you will need the following ingredients:
- 4 1/4 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup of white sugar
- 1/4 cup of raisins (optional)
- 1 (.25 ounce) package of active dry yeast
- 3/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1 1/4 cups of whole milk
- 1/2 cup of melted butter
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons of milk
- 1 1/2 cups of confectioners’ sugar
- 1/3 cup of water
To make Guyanese cross buns, you will need the following equipment:
- A large mixing bowl
- A small bowl
- A whisk or a fork
- A stand mixer or a wooden spoon
- A measuring cup and spoons
- A kitchen scale (optional)
- A knife or kitchen scissors
- A pastry brush
- A baking tray
- Parchment paper or cooking spray
- A wire rack
- A serving plate or a storage container
To make Guyanese cross buns, follow these instructions:
- In a small bowl, add the yeast and 1 tablespoon of warm water or milk. Stir well and let it sit for about 15 minutes, or until the yeast is foamy and dissolved.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Whisk well to combine.
- In a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment, or in a large mixing bowl with a wooden spoon, add the milk, butter, egg, and yeast mixture. Mix well until a sticky dough forms.
- If you are using raisins, add them to the dough and knead well to incorporate them. You can also knead the dough by hand on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover it with a damp cloth. Let it rise in a warm place for about an hour, or until it is doubled in size.
- Punch down the dough and divide it into 12 equal pieces. You can use a kitchen scale to measure them if you want. Shape each piece into a ball and place them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper or sprayed with cooking spray. Leave some space between them as they will expand.
- Using a knife or kitchen scissors, make a cross on top of each bun. You can also use your fingers to press down the dough and form a cross.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and 2 tablespoons of milk. This is the egg wash that will give the buns a nice shine. Brush the buns with the egg wash using a pastry brush.
- Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and bake the buns for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until they are golden brown on top.
- While the buns are baking, make the glaze by combining the confectioners’ sugar and water in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir well until smooth and thickened. You can also add some vanilla extract or lemon juice for extra flavor if you like.
- When the buns are done, take them out of the oven and let them cool slightly on a wire rack. Drizzle the glaze over the cross-shaped cuts on top of the buns using a spoon or a piping bag.
- Your Guyanese cross buns are ready! Enjoy them while they are still warm, or store them in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can also freeze them for up to 3 months and reheat them in the microwave or oven before serving.
Guyanese Cross Buns – A Nutritional Breakdown
Guyanese cross buns are not only delicious but also nutritious. They provide you with energy, carbohydrates, protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Here is a nutritional breakdown of one Guyanese cross bun (based on this recipe):
|Vitamin A||198 IU||4%|
|Vitamin C||1 mg||1%|
|Vitamin D||0.3 mcg||2%|
|Vitamin E||0.3 mg||2%|
|Vitamin K||1.5 mcg||1%|
|Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)||0.3 mg||25%|