For the bread
2 cups (280 g) all purpose gluten free flour, plus more for dusting (I used Better Batter)
1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
5/8 cup (75 g) tapioca starch/flour, plus more for sprinkling
½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
1 tablespoon instant yeast (9 g) (See Recipe Notes)
1 teaspoon (4 g) cream of tartar (See Recipe Notes)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
Grated zest of 1 medium lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
Grated zest of 1 small orange (about 1 tablespoon)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
¾ cup (6 fluid ounces) warm milk
1 egg (50 g, weighed out of shell) plus 1 egg yolk (25 g), at room temperature
8 tablespoons (112 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
5 ounces dried currants
For the glaze
1 egg (any size), at room temperature
¼ cup (about 30 g) confectioners’ sugar
For the icing
½ cup (58 g) confectioners’ sugar
1 to 2 teaspoons milk
For the instant yeast
Instant yeast is also called bread maker or rapid rise yeast. If you don’t have it, you can use a bit more than 11 grams of active dry yeast, but first you’ll have to prove it in the milk.
Cream of tartar
Cream of tartar is often easily found in the spice section of larger grocery stores. If you don’t have it and can’t get it, you can try using 1 teaspoon of freshly-squeezed lemon juice in its place. Just reduce the milk by the same amount, so the hydration ratio is intact.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, place the flour, xanthan gum, tapioca starch/flour, granulated sugar, yeast, and cream of tartar. Whisk to combine well. Add the cream of tartar, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, allspice, lemon zest and orange zest, and whisk again to combine well.
Add the vanilla, vinegar, milk, 1 egg and egg yolk, and the melted butter. Beat until very smooth and uniform in color and texture. The dough will be very thick. Turn off the mixer, add the currants to the dough, and mix until they’re evenly distributed throughout the dough.
Cover the dough and allow it to rest, covered, for about 45 minutes. It won’t visibly rise very much. Line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper, and set it aside.
Divide the dough into 8 approximately equal pieces. Working with one piece at a time on a surface lightly dusted with tapioca starch, roll each piece of dough into a tight ball. The dough should be relatively easy to work with, but sprinkle lightly with more tapioca starch as needed to prevent sticking. If the dough separates at all, pinch it together and continue to shape. Place the buns about 1½ -inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Cover the baking sheet with lightly oiled plastic wrap, and place in a warm, draft-free environment to rise until about 150% of their original size. In warmer, more humid environments, they may rise sufficiently in 45 minutes to an hour. Otherwise, it may take much longer.
While the buns are nearly done rising, preheat your oven to 350°F and make the egg glaze. In a small bowl, place the egg and beat it well. Add the 1/4 cup of confectioner’s sugar, and beat to combine well. You should have a thick, shiny glaze.
Once the rolls have finished rising, with a sharp knife, slice a cross (+) on top of each roll about 1/4-inch deep. Using a pastry brush, brush the top of each bun generously with the egg glaze.
Place the baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake until the buns are golden brown and firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Allow the buns to cool for about 10 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Once the buns are cool, make the icing for the cross. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the ½ cup confectioner’s sugar with 1 teaspoon milk. Mix to combine well. It will form a thick paste. Thin it with some more milk, a drop or two at a time, until it falls off the spoon slowly but steadily.
Once the rolls have cooled completely, place the icing in a pastry bag fitted with a small, plain tip, and pipe a cross (+) neatly over the cross you made with a knife, on each roll. If you attempt to ice the cross before the rolls are completely cool, the icing will melt and run.
Allow the icing to set and serve. Leftovers can be frozen in a single layer, then wrapped tightly with freezer-safe wrap. Defrost at room temperature, then sprinkle lightly with water and refresh in a warm toaster oven.
Originally published on the blog in 2012. Recipe method changed, and recipe itself modified slightly to add tapioca starch/flour for much better results. Video and all photos new.