Make your own Easter cakes, biscuits and buns with these delicious recipes, get baking!

Hot cross buns

Cooking time: 18-20 minutes

Equipment: Large baking tray, parchment, small paintbrush, saucepan

Ingredients:

Hot Cross Buns

  • 300g Doves Farm Organic Strong White Bread Flour
  • 1 tsp Doves Farm Quick Yeast
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 25g butter, melted
  • 150g milk
  • 1 egg
  • 50g currants
  • 50g mixed peel, chopped

Glaze

  • 50g Doves Farm Organic Plain White Flour
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 3 tbsp apricot jam

Method:

Hot Cross Buns

  1. Put the flour, yeast, sugar, salt and mixed spice into a bowl and mix together.
  2. Melt the butter then add the milk and egg and beat together. Stir this into the flour and mix into a sticky dough.
  3. Knead the dough in the bowl for 100 presses, if possible without adding flour. The dough will be sticky at first then become smooth and pliable.
  4. Cover with oiled cling film and leave in a warm place to double in size (about 2 hours).
  5. Line a large baking tray with parchment.
  6. Add the currants and mixed peel to the dough and knead until they are well combined.
  7. Divide the dough into 10 pieces, roll each into a ball and place it on a parchment lined oven tray.

Glaze

  1. Put the plain flour into a bowl and add just enough water to make a very thick paste.
  2. Using a paintbrush, dip it into the paste and paint a cross on each bun.
  3. Leave the buns to rise in a warm place for 20 minutes.
  4. Re-paint the paste cross and leave the buns to rise for a further 15 minutes.
  5. Pre-heat the oven.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
  7. Gently heat the apricot jam, mashing any lumps, and brush it over the buns as they come out of the oven.

Temperature

200°C, Fan 180°C, 400°F, Gas 6

Easter biscuits

Cooking time: 10-12 minutes + 2 minutes

Equipment: Large baking tray, pastry cutters or cup

Ingredients:

Biscuits

  • 100g butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • half a lemon rind and juice
  • 200g Doves Farm Organic Plain White Flour
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • 50g currants

Topping

  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar

Method:

  1. Line a baking tray with parchment and pre-heat the oven.
  2. Put the butter and sugar into a mixing bowl and beat together until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the egg yolk, grated lemon rind and juice and beat well.
  4. Sieve the flour and mixed spice into the bowl and stir to combine.
  5. Stir in the currants.
  6. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to the thickness of 2x pound coins.
  7. Press a pastry cutter or cup through the dough to make 75mm/3”circles then gently lift them onto the prepared baking tray.
  8. Gather together the off cuts and re-roll to make further biscuits.
  9. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  10. Remove the baking tray from the oven and brush the biscuits with egg white.
  11. Sprinkle caster sugar over the biscuits then return them to the oven for a further 2 minutes.

Temperature

200°C, Fan 180°C, 400°F, Gas 6

Chocolate Easter bunny cupcakes

Prep 1hr 30 mins

Cook time 35 mins

Serves 12

Ingredients:

  • 125g (4 ½ oz) baking margarine, softened
  • 125g (4 ½ oz) caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150g (5oz) plain flour
  • 1 sachet/ 25g (1oz) Fine Dark Cocoa Powder
  • 2 sachets/ 10g (2 tsp) Baking Powder (gluten free)
  • 30ml (2 tbsp) whole milk

To decorate:

  • 200g (7oz) Dr. Oetker Milk Chocolate
  • 50g (2oz) Dr. Oetker White Chocolate
  • 125g (4 ½ oz) Dr. Oetker Liquid Glucose
  • Dr. Oetker Extra Strong Pink Food Colour Gel
  • 200g (7oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 sachets/50g (2oz) Fine Dark Cocoa Powder
  • 350g (12oz) icing sugar
  • 30ml (2 tbsp) whole milk
  • Dark Chocolate Chips
  • Dr. Oetker Fairy Mix

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180?C (160?C fan assisted oven, 350?F, gas mark 4). Put the Cupcake Cases in 12 muffin tins. Put the margarine in a mixing bowl, add the caster sugar and eggs. Sift the flour, Cocoa and Baking Powder on top, add the milk, and, using an electric whisk on a low speed, mix the ingredients together. Increase the speed and whisk for a few more seconds until smooth and well blended.
  2. Divide the mixture equally between the cases and smooth over the tops. Bake for about 25 minutes until risen and just firm to the touch. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. To decorate, first make the moulding paste for the ears. Break up the Milk Chocolate into pieces and place in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water, and leave to melt. Remove from the water, mix well and stir in 100g (3 ½oz) Liquid Glucose to form a thick paste. Scrape on to a piece of clear plastic and press gently to a thickness of about 1/2cm (1/4 inch) and leave to cool – the mixture will become firm and pliable when cold. Avoid prolonged chilling as the paste will become very hard.
  4. Repeat the melting process with the White Chocolate and mix in 25g (1oz) Liquid Glucose and 1 small drop Pink Food Colour Gel. Transfer to clear plastic, press out as above and leave to cool.
  5. Once the chocolate pastes are firm, cover each with another sheet of clear plastic and roll gently until smooth and the thickness of a £1 coin. Using either 8cm and 6cm (3 x 2 ¼ inch) tall leaf cutters or cardboard templates and a knife, cut out 24 bunny ears from the Milk Chocolate paste, and 24 inner ears from the Pink paste – you may need to soften and re-roll the trimmings (see Tip).
  6. Mould each ear piece gently to soften the paste a little and then bend into different shapes. The pink coloured White Chocolate inner ears should stick on to the Milk Chocolate pieces once the paste has warmed a little by manipulating it. Pinch the ears at the base and leave in a cool place to firm up while preparing the icing. If the room temperature is very warm, put the ears in the fridge.
  7. For the icing, put the butter in a bowl and beat until smooth and glossy. Gradually sift and beat in the Cocoa Powder and icing sugar, then stir in the milk and beat the mixture until creamy and soft enough to pipe. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a large closed star nozzle and pipe a generous swirl on top of each cupcake.
  8. To serve, push a pair of ears into the top of each cupcake. Decorate with Chocolate Chips and Pink Pearls from the Fairy Princess sprinkles to make the faces. Your Easter bunny cupcakes are now ready to serve and enjoy!

TIP

If the moulding paste becomes too hard to work with or you need to gather up and re-roll the trimmings, you can pop the paste in the microwave for 5-10 second bursts to soften it up again and re-roll on the plastic as above.

Iced Easter biscuits

Hands-on time: 60mins
Cooking time: 12min
Serves: 10

Ingredients:

  • 75g (3oz unsalted butter, softened, plus extra to grease
  • 100g (3.5oz) caster sugar
  • 40g (1.5oz) condensed milk
  • I medium egg, beaten
  • Finely grated zest of ½ orange or lemon
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 200g (7oz) plain flour, plus extra to dust

For the icing:

  • 100g (3.5oz) icing sugar
  • Food colouring pastes
  • Ribbon, to decorate

Method:

  1. Put butter, sugar and condensed milk into a large bowl. Mix with a wooden spoon until pale and fluffy. Next, beat in the egg a little at a time, then add the zest, followed by the baking powder, flour and a pinch of salt. Bring together with your hands, then wrap in cling film and chill for 30mins.
  2. Lightly grease two large baking sheets with butter. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to 5mm thick. Stamp out Easter trimmings, re-rolling the trimmings.
  3. Arrange the biscuits on the prepared sheets. If you later want to thread a ribbon through the top, make a 5mm hole in each biscuit with a skewer. Chill for 15 mins.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (160 degrees fan) mark 4. Bake the biscuits for 12-12 mins until lightly golden. Loosen with a palette knife, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely
  5. For the icing, sift icing sugar into a bowl and add just enough water to make a thick spreadable paste. Divide among small bowls and add colouring to each as needed. Pipe or spread over the biscuits and leave to set. If you like, you can thread ribbons through the biscuits and hang them up.

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Easter meringue nests

The perfect sweet treat for all the family, these soft and gooey meringues are topped with whipped cream and chocolate eggs.

Prep 25 mins

Cook time 60 mins

Serves 8

Ingredients:

For the meringues:

  • 4 Free Range Egg White Powder Sachets (or 4 medium egg whites)
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • Extra Strong Pink Food Colour Gel
  • Extra Strong Yellow Food Colour Gel
  • Extra Strong Blue Food Colour Gel

To Decorate:

  • 1 can of whipped cream
  • 100g chocolate eggs

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 140 C / 120 C Fan / Gas 1.
  2. Make up the Egg White Powder as directed on pack and transfer to a large grease-free bowl.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, using a hand-whisk, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gradually add the caster sugar, one tablespoon at a time, whisking continuously until you have a shiny, stiff mixture.
  4. Spoon the meringue into three separate bowls and add 4-5 drops of one Dr. Oetker gel food colouring to each bowl. Stir the meringue through a few times to create a marbling effect with the food colouring – be careful not to over-stir.
  5. Place a piping bag with a star nozzle fitting in a jug and fold down the edges. Carefully fill the piping bag 2/3’s of the way with one of the meringue mixes. Twist the top of the piping bag to secure it.
  6. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Pipe a small amount of meringue under each corner of the parchment paper to secure it.
  7. To pipe the meringues, start by piping a circle around 3” in diameter from the outside in. Pipe two more circles on top of the outer edge to complete, so you have a nest. Repeat this seven more times using all three meringue mixes.
  8. Transfer the meringues to the oven and bake for 1 hour. Once cooked, turn the oven off and leave the meringues in the oven for at least two hours, or overnight if possible.

To decorate:

  1. Once the meringues have cooled and set, pipe the canned whipped cream into the centre of the meringues. Top with mini chocolate eggs and Easter confectionary to serve.

Carrot cake

  • 4 eggs
  • 300ml (1/2 pint) vegetable oil
  • 350g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 250g plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 450g carrots, peeled and grated
  • 100g chopped toasted pumpkin seeds or pecans (optional)
  • 100g butter, softened
  • 1 (200g) tub cream cheese, softened
  • 450g icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 100g chopped toasted pumpkin seeds
  • carrot peelings to decorate
  1. Preheat the oven to 180° Grease and flour a 9inch/ 23cm cake tin.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, caster sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla.
  3. Mix in flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots and fold in pecans or pumpkin seeds if using. Pour into the prepared tin.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in cake tin for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
  5. To Make topping: a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, icing sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy.. Spread over the top of cake when it has cooled. Decorate with toasted seeds or pecans and carrot peelings.

Bunny paw biscuits

Ingredients

  • 100g butter, softened
  • 100g light soft brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • vanilla extract
  • 275g plain flour, sifted, plus extra for dusting

For the icing

  • 1 large egg, separated
  • 125g icing sugar, sifted
  • pink food colour gel (optional)

Method

  1. Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl, then add the egg and a few drops of vanilla extract and mix well. Add the flour and stir until the dough starts to come together then tip out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead gently until it forms a smooth ball of dough. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for 30 mins.
  2. Divide the chilled dough into 20 pieces (each weighing about 25g). You will need 2 pieces of dough per biscuit. Roll the first piece into a smooth ball. Split the second piece into 3 and roll each into a small ball.
  3. Line a baking tray with baking paper for the finished biscuits, then place another piece of baking paper on the work surface to shape them on (so that they don’t stick). Take one of the larger balls and place on the paper. Use a little water to wet one side, then position the 3 smaller balls along this edge (to create the ‘toes’), using the water to stick them in place.
  4. Press down with the palm of your hand over all 4 balls to flatten them slightly – the overall biscuit should be about ½cm thick. Make indents for the icing in the middle of the paw and within each ‘toe’ using your thumb or forefinger. The biscuits will puff up quite a lot in the oven so make sure the indentations are quite firm – if the dough cracks, use a little water to help smooth it back into shape.
  5. Transfer the shaped biscuit to the lined baking tray and repeat with the remaining dough. Cover the tray with clingfilm and place in the fridge to chill for another 30 mins.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Bake the chilled biscuits for 30-35 mins until golden, then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely.
  7. To make the icing, place the egg white in a bowl and whisk gently until frothy (reserve the egg yolk for another recipe, see tip below). Whisk in the icing sugar gradually until fully incorporated and continue whisking for 5 mins or until the icing holds soft peaks. If using the food colour, stir through a few dots of the gel to reach your desired colour.
  8. Use a teaspoon (or small piping bag) to carefully fill each indent in the cooled biscuits with the icing. You may want to tip or jiggle the biscuits to help the icing flow into the holes evenly. Leave the icing to set before serving.

Ingredients

  • 250g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 7g fast-action yeast
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 1½ tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

For the fluffy coconut tails (optional):

  • 1 tsp honey
  • 3 tsp desiccated coconut

Method

  1. Mix the flour, yeast, salt, spices and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the olive oil and 150ml lukewarm water. Mix well until the dough starts to come together (add a splash more warm water if needed), then tip onto a floured work surface and knead for 5-7 mins until you have a smooth, springy dough.
  2. Roll the dough into a large sausage shape and cut into 6 even pieces. Roll one piece of dough into a thin strand (about 35cm long). Cut 1cm off the end and roll into a smooth ball for the tail; set aside.
  3. Lie one long strand in a ‘U’ shape on the work surface. Hold one end in each hand and cross over each other twice to form a twist, leaving a small loop at the bottom to form the body and to leave a hole for the tail.
  4. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Carefully transfer the bunny twist to the tray and flatten slightly to help it hold its shape. Pinch or trim the ends of the dough into pointed shapes to make the ears. Brush the hole in the loop (the bunny body) with a little water and place the reserved ball for the tail inside.
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 with the remaining pieces of dough to form 6 bunny shapes. Cover the tray loosely with oiled clingfilm (to stop it sticking) and set aside in a warm place to rise for 45 mins, or until doubled in size.
  6. Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Brush the bunnies with the beaten egg and bake for 30-35 mins until lightly golden. They should sound hollow when tapped underneath.
  7. If adding the fluffy tails, lightly brush or dab the tails with honey and sprinkle over the coconut. Leave to cool slightly on a wire rack before serving, or cool completely and store in an air-tight container until needed.

Tip: To make the bread dough, it is important to use lukewarm or tepid water to allow the yeast to work. An easy way to get the right temperature is to use 1 part boiling water to 2 parts cold water, so 50ml boiling water and 100ml cold water in this recipe.

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