These wonderful little breads have several steps, since they sport three different glazes. As the name indicates, these reportedly originate from the city of Bath, England. Though they are a bit busy, they are delicious. Posted for ZWT III.
In a mixing bowl, measure 2 cups flour and stir in the dry ingredients and hot water.
Add the eggs and beat in the mixer with the flat beater at slow speed for 30 seconds. Add the butter and beat at medium speed for 3 minutes, or for an equal length of time with a wooden spoon.
Stop the mixer; stir in the balance of flour, 1/2 cup at a time, first with the spoon and then by hand - or under the dough hook in the mixer.
The dough will be a rough shaggy mass that will clean the sides of the bowl. If the dough continues to be moist and sticky, add sprinkles of flour.
If by hand, turn the dough onto a light floured work surface and knead with the rhythmic motion of push-turn-fold. The dough will become smooth and elastic and bubbles will form under the surface.
In a mixer, the dough will form a ball around the moving dough hook. The sides of the bowl will be wiped clean.
Knead for 8 minutes.
Place the dough on the floured work surface and knead into a ball. It will be soft, smooth and slightly sticky (till dusted with flour).
Drop the dough into a greased bowl, turn to film all sides and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
Put aside at room temperature to allow the dough to double in volume, about 1 1/2 hours (or faster, if using rapid rise yeast).
While the dough is rising, soak the currants or raisins in the water for about 1 hour and drain.
The Bath Bun is about 4" in diameter.
Begin by punching down the dough and kneading in the currants or raisins. Shape the dough under your hands into a 24" long roll.
cut into 24 equal pieces - each about the size of a large egg - one will weigh about 2 oz.
Work into balls and flatten on top. Place them on a baking sheet, leaving 1 1/2" between them.
Brush each with the beaten egg yolk. Dribble the lemon juice and sugar over the tops.
Place your baking sheet in a warm place; cover carefully with a length of wax paper or parchment paper. The buns will double in bulk in about 45 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 about 20 minutes before baking.
Brush the rolls with milk before placing them in the oven. Bake in the moderate oven till the buns test done - 20-30 minutes. (Rap once on the bottom crust. A hard, hollow sound means the bun is baked - just don't wait till it's too hard).
Remove from the oven, place on a metal rack to cool before serving.