Hot Cross Buns


Next time you're scoffing a yummy hot cross bun dripping in butter remember that at one time they were banned in England!

It's not just in England that we bake yummy breads at Easter in fact throughout the world, many cultures have special celebratory breads that are traditionally baked at this time of year.

These breads are often rich with eggs, butter and spices and packed with fruits and nuts.

These days with supermarkets and modern conveniences we take these ingredients for granted, but at one time they were very expensive and hard to find. This meant that this kind of food was reserved for holidays and special occasions.

Hot cross buns at Easter are a metaphor for the resurrection of Christ - flour comes to life and transforms itself to bread. But hot cross buns actually pre-date Christianity.

They were originally used in pagan ceremonies and rituals and the Christian Church attempted to ban them. But they were just too popular so the Church eventually 'Christianised' the buns.

During the reign of Queen Elizabeth I a law was passed limiting consumption of hot cross buns to proper religious ceremonies, such as Christmas, Easter or funerals.




Source: BBC


In England, they were once sold by street vendors who advertised their wares with cries of "Hot Cross Buns! "Hot Cross Buns!"


Their street cries became a nursery rhyme....


Hot cross buns!

Hot cross buns!

One a penny, two a penny,

Hot cross buns!



If ye have no daughters,

Give them to your sons.

One a penny, two a penny,

Hot cross buns


The following is a recipe for Traditional Scottish Hot Cross Buns:

1/2 level teaspoon sugar

5 tablespoon lukewarm water

3 level teaspoon dried yeast

1 lb (strong) plain flour

1 level teaspoon salt

1 level teaspoon mixed spice

1/2 level teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 level teaspoon nutmeg

2 oz butter

2 level tablespoon superfine or castor sugar

4 oz mixed dried fruit

2 oz chopped mixed peel (lemon, orange or lime)

5 fl oz lukewarm milk

1 large egg, beaten

a little extra milk

2 oz shortcrust pastry

Glaze - 2 tablesp milk

2 level tablesp sugar

Dissolve sugar in the water, sprinkle yeast on top. Leave in a warm place until frothy, about 20 minutes. Sift flour, salt and spices. Fold in butter lightly. Stir in superfine or castor sugar, fruit and peel. Hollow the center. Pour milk, egg and yeast liquid into hollow. Mix to soft dough. Knead on floured surface until smooth and no longer sticky, about 10 minutes. Cover and put in a warm place until double in size - about 2 hours.

Turn on to floured surface, knead until smooth. Cut into 12 pieces. Knead each piece into a smooth ball, place on greased baking sheet, cover and leave until almost double in size. Preheat a hot oven ( 220 deg C or 425 deg F ), center shelf.

Roll pastry out thinly, cut into narrow strips 2 to 3 in long. Brush buns with milk, place pastry crosses on top. Bake 20 - 25 minutes until they sound hollow when tapped on base. Dissolve sugar in milk, boil 1 minute.

Brush hot buns with glaze. Cool. Eat and enjoy on Good Friday

Source: BellaOnline




What are your favourite traditional recipes? With what holiday or festival do you associate them? Give a list of ingredients and tell how you make your favourite one

My favourite is one which you associate with Easter - torrijas or French Toast as they are known in English. I love them with either milk or wine.



Comments

Jose Luis said…
My favourite traditional food are Torrijas too. Every Easter, my grandmother makes Torrijas. After teh Civil War, a lot of people made Torrijas, because is a strong meal and it didn´t need a lot of ingredients: only bread, water (people hadn´t money for milk), eggs and sugar. Nowadays you can make Torrijas with milk, olive oil and cinnamon.
Other traditional bun are the huesillos or rosquillas. The ingredients are flour, olive oil, milk, sugar, lemon, yeast, glass sugar and liquor like pomace. My grandmother make it all the year because are very good.
Graham said…
My favourite traditional food IS Torrijas too. Every Easter, my grandmother makes Torrijas. After the Civil War, a lot of people made Torrijas, because IT is SUBSTANTIAL and it didn´t need a lot of ingredients: only bread, water (people DIDN'T HAVE money for milk), eggs and sugar. Nowadays you can make Torrijas with milk, olive oil and cinnamon.
Other traditional BUNS/SWEETS are the huesillos or rosquillas. The ingredients are flour, olive oil, milk, sugar, lemon, yeast, glass sugar and liquor like pomace. My grandmother MAKES THEM ALL YEAR ROUND because THEY are very good.

- Remember to use the subject immediately after "because"!