Trying to make hot cross buns

It is coming up to Easter and here in Australia, that means hot cross buns. As soon as Christmas is done you can find them in the supermarkets.

It is a bit ridiculous really and we always marvel at quickly they start making them after Christmas. Sometimes it is within a day or two.

I love them, and I don’t mind how quickly they start appearing, though I only like them when they are really fresh. I get really annoyed when you get them home and once you open them you can tell they are a few days old. I’m not happy when that happens.

Though I don’t like them with peel and many make them with it. I like just all fruit, sultanas are fine or currants.

History of hot cross buns

When I started writing this I wondered where they came from. I know they are English and since we have English customs here we also have them for Easter. However, I got curious to see when they started and found this curious post on the following site, this is the article I found, Here’s Why We Eat Hot Cross Buns at Easter. They said this:

The origins of hot cross buns may go back as far as the 12th century. According to the story, an Anglican monk baked the buns and marked them with a cross in honor of Good Friday. Over time they gained popularity, and eventually became a symbol of Easter weekend.

There is a lot more there, take a look.

They are supposedly a religious symbol, but really they are too good. I wish they would make them all year round, maybe without the cross when not around Easter.

Making some

Anyway, I thought I might try making them. I have never made them before, but I’ve made lots of bread-type things over the last couple of years, so I thought, “how hard can they be”?

Good question.

They weren’t terribly hard, and I found a good recipe, or so I thought. However, they were quite heavy and dense, so I might have done something wrong. I will just have to try making them again.

I guess with these sorts of things you can’t always expect to get it right the first time.

After my last post, I thought I should do some more photography with the buns, so you can see here a couple of set-up shots. I think the more I do it the better I will get. We can only hope. I do need to get more backdrops though. I keep using the same ones.

Do you have any Easter traditions in your country? What about your home? What do you love about Easter, if you celebrate it?

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    1. It could be the extra ingredients they add. Here are the ingredients for some Waitrose sell, INGREDIENTS: fortified wheat flour (wheat flour, calcium carbonate, iron, niacin, thiamin), soaked sultanas (19%) (sultanas, water), water, soaked raisins (7%) (raisins, water), currants (4%), yeast, Chilean flame raisins (3%) (Chilean flame raisins, water), pasteurised free range egg, butter (milk), milk whey powder, dextrose, wheat gluten, emulsifiers (mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids, mono- and diacetyl tartaric acid esters of mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids), orange zest, lemon zest, salt, flavourings, potato starch, rapeseed oil, palm fat, flour treatment agent (ascorbic acid). Or it could be the way they are cooked. Maybe adding in steam.

    2. That list of ingredients is pretty much the reason why I like the idea of making my own. It is kind of scary when you see exactly what they put in them. I did add steam to my oven when I was making them, so don’t know if that is it.
      There was an episode of the Great British Bake off where they made something like these, and I know they gave reasons for the dough being stodgy, so maybe I should watch that episode again.

  1. I’m impressed! The last time I tried to make anything in the “bread family” they turned out like hockey pucks! They immediately went into the trash! Yours look delicious! Nice job!

    1. haha, I’ve had some of those too Donna. I’ve been baking most of my own bread for a couple of years now. I hate buying it. I do think it is all about practicing as well. Thank you.

  2. Your creation looks so delicious, Leanne! I’ve wondered how Australia and the UK are connected and if Canada is also a part of this.

    1. Thank you John, we are very English here, though US television and movies is changing that a lot, which is sad. I don’t really know about Canada, from what I’ve seen they seem far more American, but I don’t really know.

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