Begin by making the dough. Place the flour, caster sugar, butter, eggs, yeast, salt and milk into a large bowl. Add about half of the water and slowly mix everything together with your hands.
Add the remaining water slowly to make a soft dough. It will be sticky at this stage but it will become smooth as you knead it.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for about 15 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
Place the dough back into the bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave it to rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
Divide the dough into 12 pieces. I do this but cutting it in half, then each half in half and so on until you have 12 pieces.
Roll each piece into a ball, flatten slightly and then roll the edges over into the middle with your fingers.
Flatten again slightly and then gently stretch each piece into a finger shape about 5 inches long.
Grease a baking tray lightly with butter or baking paper and place the dough fingers on top. Remember to leave enough space for them to double in size.
Set them aside in a warm place for 40 minutes and preheat an oven to 425 degrees F.
Bake the buns for about 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and leave to cool.
When they are completely cool, make the icing. Sift the icing sugar in a large bowl and gradually stir in about 5 teaspoons of cold water to form a smooth, thick paste – it should be thick enough so it won’t slide off the bun but not so thick that you need to use a knife to spread it.
Dip the top side of each bun in the icing to evenly coat and arrange across a tray. Working quickly before the icing dries, decorate the iced tops with your chosen sweets and garnishes.
From: Great British Chefs, with conversions to U.S. ingredients names, measurements and temperatures by me