2 teaspoon Instant Yeast
1/4 cup Warm Water
1 cup Warm Milk
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/4 cup Unsalted Butter melted and cooled
3/4 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Pure Maple Syrup
1 teaspoon Salt
3 cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon Ground Allspice
1/4 teaspoon Ground Cloves
1 tablespoon Orange Zest finely minced
Egg Wash for brushing on tops of buns
1/2 cup Dried Tart Cherries reconstituted and patted dry
1/2 cup Dried Cranberries reconstituted and patted dry
2 cups Confectioners' Sugar
Orange Juice as required
Water as required
In a large bowl (or bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook) hand whisk together the yeast and water and let stand 2 minutes. Stir in the milk, butter, sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt to dissolve. Whisk in eggs. Add most of the white flour, the whole-wheat flour, spices, and mix by hand to make a soft dough. When dough can no longer be mixed by hand, begin kneading (5-7 minutes by hand or using a dough hook on an electric mixer), dusting in more all-purpose flour if needed and adding in the orange zest. Let dough rest for 15 minutes. Knead in dried cranberries and dried cherries. Shape dough into a ball and let rest, covered with a tea towel for about 20 minutes.
Divide dough into 12 pieces and shape into balls. You may also roll dough out and cut into 3 inch rounds (about 1/2 inch thick). Place dough balls on a lightly greased baking sheet about one inch apart. Using floured scissors, snip a cross on the top of each bun.
Preheat oven to 375°F. Place buns in oven and reduce heat to 350°F. Bake for 17-20 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Remove from the oven and transfer to a rack. When cool, apply fondant.
In one small bowl, mix orange juice and 1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar to make a spreadable glaze. In a second bowl, mix 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar with water to make a white glaze. Smear each bun with orange glaze. Allow to set, and then drizzle on some white glaze.
Note from Chef Marcy Goldman
This certainly tweaks Easter tradition. Instead of citron and currants, these soft, sweet buns feature dried tart cherries and cranberries, and a touch of pure maple syrup from a new Spring vat. You can forgo the vanilla fondant topping and simply smear on some melted white chocolate if serving the buns still warm.