Sunday, April 24, 2011

One a penny two a penny... cross cross buns...

More than any other holiday food, I miss my grandmother's hot cross buns. (I also like the nursery rhyme song. It's terribly catchy.) Every Easter hot cross buns rose, up from the seasonal recipe grave. And after Easter dinner, my grandmother would scoot us out the door of the big white house on Charles Street with zip-lock bags full of leftovers. I didn't care about the ham. I wanted those buns. They were the next week's breakfasts and snacks and my mother made fresh frosting for each. Fresh powdered sugar frosting! Did you hear that?

Today, I missed hot cross buns.

I have missed them before. I have tried to raise the cross myself. I have failed.
When I was in college in San Francisco, there was a horrifying attempt involving a doubled batch and killed yeast. Those crosses were not raising that day. No sir. They littered the small flat's kitchen like little accusatory X's -- you killed us! I was my grandmother's recipe's Judas...  
And today I betrayed again. 

I kissed memories and didn't even get silver. 

With scars yet to heal from the San Francisco disaster of 2004, I could not bring myself to try yeast. No. No, you see, I learn from my mistakes. I would bake some little Irish Soda Bread buns. Quick bread. No yeast. I could do this. Throughout the afternoon, I moseyed up a recipe. And as I set the little cornmeal dusted crossed buns onto the parchment paper lined tray, placing them into the oven to bake, I felt a sense of pride. I had redeemed myself. But my self-redemption didn't last. This body was not to be broken for me.

There were two eggs still sitting on the counter.

I hard boiled them.....  


  1. nice egg cups - almost makes up for the lack of hot-crossed buns.

  2. Ah yes Hot Crossed Buns :-) I too can remember the taste and texture of these highly anticipated Easter treats. They were better then any candied confection left by the fake Easter Bunny.
    When I told Grandma that Bryan and I would not be coming for Easter dinner she sighed and said, "I'm so relieved." as she hated to think of me watching the rest savoring her delicious Hot Crossed Buns.
    Bryan went up on Saturday to tear down and rebuild her trellis fence and he commented as he headed out the door that he was hoping for a few of the buns. And his work was not in vain as Grandma did bestow on him the coveted buns as a reward :)

  3. Anonymous - the egg cups more than make up the lack. Someone really cool sent them to me. :)

    sgb - Maybe a 3rd try will be the charm...sigh...but I am glad grandma is still making them, and I am glad papa got a bag to take home!

  4. 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

  5. Cofisher - exactly! (And now it is going to be stuck in my head all day!)