Monday, April 9, 2007
English Traditional Hot Cross Buns on Good Friday Morning
I made these traditional hot cross buns for Easter this year for the first time in my life, as Amar persistantly pleaded for "hot cross buns for a Good Friday breakfast treat".
I referred to three different recipes from three different bread cookbooks including two borrowed from the public library. In the end, I went for the recipe from the book that I own, with a few changes made in favor of my preferences (such as reducing the amount of sugar and butter).
These buns turned out quite well for a first try: Amar was very happy with my buns, as well as the fact that he got to have real traditional hot cross buns for a Good Friday breakfast, as he used to do every year in NZ ;-)
According to these cookbooks I referred to, hot cross buns were born in pagan England, but somehow it became a tradition in the UK and English-speaking countries to eat hot cross buns on Good Friday morning. Some people still believe, one book says, that there is a curative power when you eat these buns on Good Friday morning. (Notes: However, it seems that hot cross buns are not so common in the U.S., as all the several American friends we asked if they eat hot cross buns for Good Friday answered that they only know of the cross buns from a nursery rhyme but never actually tasted them. Of which Amar said to me, "A sad life, isnt't it..." with a sigh and a wink.)
As I was so pleased with these buns, I made them again on Easter Sunday and shared some with two family friends of ours. When I was making the second batch, Amar's mum Christine and her husband Peter happened to "call" us for a video chat on Skype, and they saw me putting the crosses on the buns before baking and brushing syrup onto them after the baking was done! At both ends of the video phone, we all found it very funny :-)
These pictures are taken by Amar while I was making the first batch of hot cross buns on Thursday night:
(Good Friday Breakfast with Hot Cross Buns)