Fluffy sourdough chocolate chip hot cross buns for Easter. Gently spiced, filled with rich chocolate, and naturally leavened with sourdough.

In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine all the dough ingredients except for the butter and chocolate chips.

Turn the mixer on medium and combine until it forms a thick but slightly sticky dough.

Add in the butter and keep it mixing until the sticky dough starts to strengthen and come together and pull away cleanly from the sides of the bowl. This can take around 15 minutes.

Flatten the dough out and spread the chocolate chips on top. Fold the dough around the chocolate chips and then gently knead it on the bench to disperse the chocolate through the dough.

Form the dough into a ball and place into a clean bowl . Cover it and let it proof in a warm spot to let it rise by 40-50%. This can take around 4-6 hours depending on temperature.

Once proofed, place the covered dough in the refrigerator for at least 5 hours.

Pull the dough from the bowl onto a lightly floured bench and cut it into 9 or 12 even-sized pieces. Form each piece into a tight ball.

Place the balls, seam side down into a parchment paper-lined dish. I make 9 and use a 10x10inch/25x25cm square dish. You could also use a 9 x13 inch dish.

Cover the dish with a dampened tea towel, plastic wrap, or a lid and let them rise overnight until doubled.

Mix together the mixture for the crosses, and pipe crosses over the buns using a piping bag fitted with a small round tip.

Bake the buns for around 23-25 minutes until deeply browned. Once they come from the oven, brush them immediately with a sugar glaze.