Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Hot Cross Buns: Another Reason to Live in Oz

So I was at my local shops today and was reminded that I wanted to give a few words in praise of these.

If you're one of my American readers (Doesn't saying this give the impression that I have a vast, international audience? May we pretend it is so?), you may have never had a hot cross bun. May I take this opportunity to extend my most heartfelt sympathies? Okay, go back to your Twinkies now. Others of you who live in Commonwealth countries are well familiar with these. However, they're relatively new to me and a real treat at Easter time!

Our first Easter here, I noticed hot cross buns for sale everywhere in the shops. I vaguely remembered some antiquated British nursery rhyme about them, but there my knowledge ended. Hot cross buns are yummy, soft sweetened buns, usually with currants in them. Traditionally, I think they were eaten on Good Friday, and like most medieval traditions, meant to ward off evil spirits or somethin'. Whatevs--all I know is that they are gooood.

Maybe some of you can educate me as to how they're meant to be eaten. I like to heat them up and add a little butter. After all, I am Southern, which is another way of saying, "If you can't deep fry it, slather it with butter." Sometimes I add honey, too. Gasp, say the purists! However, I am a firm believer that most things are made better with a generous portion of butter or honey.

So, there you have it--Hot Cross Buns at Easter. De-lish. One more reason life in Australia is pretty darn good.

Now, if I were like one of them fancy mommy bloggers, I'd include my own special recipe, perhaps with a photo of me lovingly instructing Ava and Nate as we make our own special batch. I can almost see the dusting of flour across their cheeks. Lovely.

Ha! I think you know me better than that by now. What's more likely in my 32 weeks preggo state, is that I will take my store bought hot cross buns and add a heaping scoop of cookies 'n cream ice cream on top. I am Southern, after all, which is another way of saying, "If there is a conceivable way of adding sugar or fat to this snack, I will find it."


  1. From one cell of your International Readership: Hilarious post! And no, I've never had the pleasure... but in my imagination, I'm totally thinking Irish soda bread ('coz of the currants probably), but sweeter and softer, and with icing on top. Oh, be still my southern heart!

  2. I'm laughing so hard at the idea of you and Ava and Nate baking.

    Remember when he hid in your pantry for 20 minutes and ate all the semi-sweet baking chocolate?

  3. I've never eaten hot cross buns, but I can play it on the piano. (And that's about *all* I can play on the piano.) That picture looks so yummy...

    I'd be very interested to hear the story about Nate's chocolate-eating escapade. A kid after my own heart.

  4. I am certainly part of your International Readership and like to think of myself as vast. Oh? That's not what you meant?

    Anyway - hot cross buns (in my humble opinion) should be toasted and slathered in butter. Yum yum. I hope you're sending some to Becky so she know's what she's missing - poor girl!

  5. fraught--i do think they would translate well to the South, but I think Americans would sweeten them up more.

    Becky, it's so funny that you mentioned Nate hiding in the pantry, just as i sat down to the computer i had to shoo him out of there. He LOVES hiding in the pantry.

    And Cassie--he is one cheeky dude. It was actually a BIG box of candy sprinkles he got into that time. He ate a good bit of them, then sprinkled the rest all over the floor. I was finding sprinkles between the floor tiles for months. For someone with my delicate housekeeping sensibilities, this was indeed a trial. ;)

    bsouth! I was hoping you'd comment--I knew you could guide us. :) Thanks!

  6. What!!! you didn't have hot cross buns in the US of A!!! Thanks for educating my ignorance:)
    In the subcontinent where I grew up we only had hot cross buns on Good Friday - the bakers only sold them the week before Easter. I grew up thinking it was part of the "fast" we were supposed to do on Good Friday and that them being more "plain food" it counted as a "fast" of more exotic Indian food!
    But now in Oz, I see them on the shelves right after New Year! There's something wrong here....hmmm. Not that I complain too much because I loooove them and as bsouth said, yes, toasted "under the grill" is best with a bit of butter although I do just eat it untoasted with butter and sometimes dunked in tea...oh I'm giving away too much knowledge of my bad habits to your world wide audience:)
    Enjoy them!
    p.s. sorry I didn't get to comment on your other posts, thought provoking and yes, for the one prior to that, I've been on the receiving end of your generous hospitality, thankyou so....much!

  7. Oh, and I forgot to say, I'll show you some hot cross buns. . .

    I couldn't help it.

  8. When I was in 4th grade, my school gave recorders to the entire class and taught us to play "Hot Cross Buns." It seemed like a weird choice--of instrument and song. And I never (until now) had any idea what a hot cross bun was, but it sounded tasty. If I remember, the tune was the same as "Three Blind Mice."

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  10. I have to agree with Amy that these delectable hot cross buns could do well in the states. With a little marketing and some extra sugar (which seems to be in all bread found on shelves in US) they could go big!

    Becky you are hilarious! I was thinking the same thing :). Maybe I shouldn’t admit that. Oh well, done!

    Better Than Machines my class in around 4th grade was also given a recorder and taught to play hot cross buns. They taste a lot better than it plays!