1. Pour the milk into a small saucepan and add the butter. Warm the mixture on a low heat until the butter has melted and the milk is almost steaming – but don’t let it boil. Set to one side to cool briefly.
2. Tip the flour into a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer. To one side of the bowl, add the caster sugar, salt and mixed spice. To the other, add the yeast. Pour the milk and butter mixture into the bowl and stir together until a rough dough forms – it will be quite wet.
3. Knead the mixture using a dough hook, or by hand on a lightly oiled surface, until it is smooth and really stretchy. Place the dough back into the bowl and leave to rise for at least an hour, or until doubled in size.
4. When the dough has risen, turn it out onto a lightly oiled surface and knock it back by folding it over on itself a couple of times. Sprinkle over the mixed peel, lemon zest and ginger, then continue to knead until the fruit is evenly distributed.
5. Shape the dough into 8 balls and place onto two parchment-lined baking trays. Cover with a plastic bag and leave to rise for 45 minutes, or until noticeably larger. Meanwhile, preheat the
oven to 200°C, gas mark 6.
6. Brush the teacakes with beaten egg and bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown and risen. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
7. To make the honey butter, beat the soft butter with the honey (and syrup if using) until really smooth and combined. Chill until ready to use and serve spread over the teacakes.