Hot Cross Buns: When Exactly?

Hot Cross Bun Ad

When, indeed. Tomorrow! How did I miss that?

Hot cross buns have always been part of my Easter. But apparently I don't remember the details from my childhood, because today, as I was buying hot cross buns for the weekend (as I do every year), it occurred to me I wasn't sure when we were supposed to eat them. So I brought out the Google, and low and behold, discovered it's Good Friday.

Good God! Good Friday? Here I was set to serve them on Sunday.

Further research enlightened me to the fact they're fair game all through Lent, starting with Shrove Tuesday, and ending at noon on Good Friday.

Since you will likely be eating one in the next 24 hours, here are five things you don't need to know at all:

  • Sharing a hot cross bun bodes well for a relationship. Say the following: "Half for you and half for me, Between us two shall goodwill be", then toast with your buns.
  • If you hang a hot cross bun in your kitchen, it will protect it from a fire and ensure that all the bread you bake will come out perfectly. Don't forget to change the bun each year.
  • In 1592, the London Clerk of Markets forbade the selling of hot cross buns and other spiced breads except on Good Friday, Christmas and at burials. This was an attempt by Elizabeth to diminish the role of Catholicism in her Protestant England, and the fact we associate hot cross buns with Easter goes back to this.
  • Hot cross buns with cream cheese frosting crosses are really good.
  • The words to the nursery rhyme are: Hot cross buns! Hot cross buns! One ha' penny, Two ha' penny, Hot cross buns! If you have no daughters, Give them to your sons, One ha' penny, Two ha' penny, Hot cross buns!

As for my buns, they'll be rising from the freezer on Friday morning. Thank God!