Thursday, March 01, 2007

Hot Cross Buns, etc.

Em remembers Hot Cross Buns being made (and sold) in Illinois between Ash Wednesday and Easter. ONE store around here advertised them for sale on Fat Tuesday. Since then, we've seen nothing offered in the stores. It seems that SOME cultures only eat them on Good Friday, so I'll look for them in the local stores around that time. Took some pictures of the ones I made. Here they are unglazed (fresh from the oven): Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting You can see the carved cross above, but the next step is to apply a glaze to the carved cross. I've heard that some bakers fill the cross with custard, but I haven't seen that. I used commercial frosting to make the crosses for the following photo, because the glaze melts immediately on the hot buns and we do want hot cross buns. Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting The lore behind the buns vary as much as the words for the song by the same name. Here are some guesses: Legend has it that hot cross buns were part of pagan spring festivals, and that a pious monk incised the buns with the sign of the cross in honor of Christ's resurrection. They are now traditionally eaten on Good Friday. : : : : : : : : : Hot crossed buns. "At the feast to Eastre, an ox was sacrificed and the image of his horns carved into ritual bread - which evolved into the twice-scored Easter biscuits we call 'hot cross buns.' In fact, the word 'bun' derives from the Saxon for 'sacred ox,' 'boun.'" Sacred Origins of Profound Things. A cross bun kept from one Good Friday to the next was thought to bring luck, the buns were supposed to serve as a charm against shipwreck, and hanging a bun over the chimneypiece ensured that all bread baked there would be perfect. Another belief was that eating hot cross buns on Good Friday served to protect the home from fire. [If you see a bun hanging from my chimneypiece (wherever that is), you'll know why ] Hot Cross Bun THESE BUNS ARE made especially for Easter and are documented to have existed before the advent of Christian Easter celebrations. These were made as cakes from wheat which was used in Pagan Spring festivals. The buns were traditionally made on Good Friday in the Christian church with the dough kneaded for the Host and therefore marked with a cross to indicate this. These buns/cakes were also believed to have many special properties including the curing of certain illnesses (See also Mystical WWW Mystical Plants). They were also believed to last twelve months without turning mouldy which was of great use during Pagan times when the storage of food was imperative for survival. It was believed that they would protect against evil forces and fire if hung in the kitchen. Sailors believed that hot cross buns would protect against shipwreck if taken to sea. Farmers in certain parts of England (UK) also believed that they would protect the granary against rats. THE ANCIENT GREEKS made a similar type of bun called a 'bous' with horns dedicated to Apollo, Diana, the Moon and Hecate. It too was said to never go moldy and to have mystical powers. The shape of the bun was said to represent the moon whilst the four quarters divided on the top of the bun represented the four quarters of the year. Good Friday comes this month : the old woman runs. With one a penny, two a penny 'hot cross buns', Whose virtue is, if you believe what's said, They'll not grow moldy like the common bread.' Poor Robin's Almanac, 1733. We had fun on Monday of this week attending offerings for both Black History Month and Women's History Month. <-- Did you know March is Women's History Month? First, we were served a light lunch while we listened to two of these guys in the bottom-left photo and another guy on drums play traditional African music. The Cora (Kora) is a fascinating instrument and Dave Gilden has pretty much devoted his life to it. After they played, we watched traditional African dance. In the evening, we attended a reception combination kick-off for Women's History Month and a Women's Art Show where we were fed again and entertained by female musicians. 'twas a fun free day! We'll need to pay a little for our March entertainment, though. I have five plays lined up, as well as a symphony concert. I'm squeezing in as much as I can before Em returns to Race Track duty in April. I also have dates with Richard and Bill this month. :-( Update: Made some beautiful hamburger buns this evening for BBQ beef sandwiches. MMMM! Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting 'snew wit' ch'all?


No. 2 said...

Well, they sure look like what I would assume hot cross buns would look like! You really did your homework on those suckers, too.

Not much new here. Went to my first Bulls game last Monday which was fun. They lost, but it was very entertaining. Dad's b-day was Tuesday so him and myself went to the movies on Wed. to see Bridge to Terebithia. Not at all what we were expecting, but still a pretty good movie. Then had to see the musical Mame done by my school for my theater class on Thursday evening. That was a drag, but was required.

Lots of work this weekend as I picked up another girl's shift on Monday. And hoping to go see the new movie Wild Hogs with John Travolta on Monday night.

That's about all for me! Hooray for Woman's history month! :)

Diane said...

I got logged in finally! Woot! Hot diggety dog! It's taken me freaking DAYS to figure out how to get it to let me post again! *sniffle*

What was the question? :-p

Oldnovice said...

I'll look and see why you might be having problems, Diane.

Bulls games are expensive, No. 2; how'd you score a ticket for that? We saw Zodiac this week. It was enjoyable enough, but 3 (THREE) hours long! We had to miss one play and reschedule another because Julian (Em's grandson) made it to the playoffs with his basketball team. The rescheduled play:
URINETOWN is a zany, absurdist musical about a city in the midst of a drought so devastating that a malevolent corporation has been able to take control of all the toilet facilities. Greed, corruption, and betrayal run rampant as the public desperately seeks relief--in more ways than one! Winner of THREE Tony awards!!! left us a little cold. Dunno why; maybe we just weren't in the mood for it on that night or maybe it had something to do with the guy who sat two rows behind us who loudly laughed all through the show even before the funny part. (We got the feeling he was a plant, like a laugh track).

Not making hotcross buns this week, as (DRUMROLL..................)

Em doesn't really like the ones I made. :-(

Diane: Please thank Sarrah for the wonderful hamburger bun recipe. They get better every time I make them and those Em DOES like.

Went to Richard yesterday to get two cavities fixed. I really don't understand how I could have gone 25 years without a cavity and now that I'm older get about two every year. My whole mouth hurt the whole damn day from that. It finally stopped hurting before bedtime and I didn't brush because I figured it best to leave my mouth alone at that point. Late next week I see Bill's hygienist for their brand of semi-annual cleaning.

Besides yesterday's movie, we have 1-2 concerts to attend this week and one play. Next Sunday we start the week with another play and then Em wants to go to Louisiana for a few days again.

Researching types and prices of some kitchen appliances, as well as used cars. That's a time-consuming process with no guarantee that a better decision will be made in the end, but something I feel needs to be done.

Almost time to go to the gym again. I hurt myself somehow last week. One arm and one leg felt like they were trying to fall out of their sockets for several days. Weird sensations. Gonna cool it a little this week and not try and keep up with No. 1.

Diane said...

I'll look and see why you might be having problems, Diane.

Don't bother because I'm sure it was solely operator error.

Diane: Please thank Sarrah for the wonderful hamburger bun recipe.

I would gladly do so but I don't have her email addy and I'm not hanging anywhere she is these days.

No. 2 said...

Ah. The Bulls tickets were compliments of the same customer who took me to Vegas and to two concerts. I took Monica with me. It was really free for him, too, since their bank for his business has skybox tickets and he just basically asked for them as a perk of doing business with them. So, not only was it FREE, but there was also FREE drinks and food. (You would LOVE it, mom. :) )

Anyways, got called into work today which was good as I have to go to the doctor and dentist soon and need some extra cash in order to do so. Plus, my boss REALLY appreciates it when I help them out like that leaving me with brownie points whenever *I* need a favor. (Always selfish intentions in the grandest of gestures.)

Well, getting ready for bed. Sorry about your hot cross buns. I wish I could have tried them. But I'm also a BIG fan of the hamburger buns as well. :)

Aveline said...

Good for people to know.