A delicious alternative to the traditional hot cross bun. Fruit brioche doughnuts filled with spiced orange custard, rolled in cinnamon and sugar and finished with a candied orange peel cross. 

These doughnuts are best the day they're made. 


Makes 9 doughnuts


250mls whole fat milk, lukewarm
1 1/2 teaspoons active dried yeast
3 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons caster sugar
4 teaspoons of cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon all spice
2 tablespoons citrus peel
1/2 cup raisins or sultanas
2 eggs
70 grams butter, cubed
Oil for frying

1 cup of caster sugar and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon to coat doughnuts

2 egg yolks
2 1/2 tablespoons caster sugar
275mls whole milk
Seeds from half a vanilla pod
2 tablespoons cornflour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of all spice
Rind of half an orange, finely grated
65ml cream

1 orange
1/3 cup of caster sugar


Place the orange peel in a pot covered with water and bring to the boil, drain water then repeat this step two more times. 

Mix together caster sugar and 2 cups of water. Place in a pot with the orange peel and simmer until peel has become translucent. This can take 1 - 2 hours. Drain the orange peel and place on a drying rack, leave to dry for 4 - 5 hours or overnight.

In a medium sized bowl combine the lukewarm milk and dried yeast, stir until yeast has dissolved then set aside for a few minutes. 

Place the dry ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and combine. Alternatively mix in a large bowl until well combined. Add the milk mixture and egg to dry ingredients and mix using a dough hook or large metal spoon. Increase to a medium speed and mix for 5 to 10 minutes until the dough becomes glossy. Gradually add butter to the dough until well combined. Add the citrus peel and raisins and mix until fruit is well distributed throughout the dough. Place the dough in a warm spot and cover loosely, allow dough to prove until doubled in size.

Roll dough out on a clean floured surface until dough is around 2cm thick. Cut into 9 circles using an 8cm cookie cutter. Lay a tea towel over the dough and leave for 30 minutes. 

Fill a large heavy bottomed pot with 4cm of oil and place over a medium to high heat until the oil reaches 180°C. While the oil heats, take a cooling rack and place two layers of paper towels on top. 

Gently lower the doughnuts 2 at a time into the oil and fry until golden brown on one side, this should take around 1-2 minutes. Carefully turn the doughnuts and fry for an additional 2 minutes. Once cooked, roll in cinnamon and sugar and place on the cooling rack. Repeat with remaining doughnuts. 

In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolks, 1 tablespoon of caster sugar and cornflour until thick and pale. 

In a medium saucepan, heat the milk, remaining sugar, vanilla seeds, cinnamon, all spice and finely grated orange peel until just simmering. Pour half the milk into the egg mixture and whisk continuously. Pour back into pot with remaining milk and stir until thickened. Set aside to cool, then refrigerate. 

Whip cream using an electric mixer until cream reaches soft peaks. Beat chilled custard until smooth and carefully fold into whipped cream.  

Using the back of a spoon, poke a hole in each of the doughnuts and fill with custard cream and top with an orange peel cross.