March 24th 2012
I walked into the St. John yesterday, just as the first batch of Hot Cross Buns came out of the oven. Terry the pastry chef glazed them while they were hot and the staff all queued up for a taste test – I got one too!
These are without a doubt, the best Hot Cross Buns I have ever had. They take several days to make and you can taste individual flavours of cinnamon and ginger. The sultanas are soft and I particularly liked the little pieces of candied fruit. The dough is made of wholemeal flour and the bun itself is quite substantial. The Hot Cross Buns are great just as they are or toasted with butter.
These are not cheap, but once you’ve eaten one you’ll never want a supermarket bun again! It’s two weeks until Easter and the St. John will be baking Hot Cross Buns right up until Good Friday.
The St. John is at 26 St. John Street, EC1M 4AY – Google Map
Here are some home made recipes from Alice Cooke, Dan Lepard, Delia Smith, Michael Gilligan and Nigella Lawson they probably won’t match the St. John, but they’ll be a lot more wholesome than the chemical offerings from supermarkets.
I also found a description, here, by Justin Piers Gellatly, head baker at the St. John, which shows just how much goes into making a really good Hot Cross Bun:
We make our dough in two parts. First we create a liquidy dough which we ferment to improve the flavour, and we finish it off about seven hours later with more flour, butter, and eggs. Then we mix that until it’s firm, adding raisins macerated in rum, orange juice, candied stem ginger and syrup from the stem ginger.
These look warm and tasty! The first song I learned on the violin when I was 5 was “Hot Cross Buns” haha, I’ve never even had one to this day 🙂
Thanks – that sounds very unfair – I’d send you a hot cross bun but I don’t think you’d want it stale 😉
I love them and made some a couple of years ago here…the went down well. Will have to make some more before Easter I think! Very jealous of your tasting… 😉
I bet your hot cross buns take some beating 😉
Oh I definitely need to press a “love” button for those stunning hot cross buns!
I think they’d be very pleased with that response 😉
One a penny, two a penny, hot cross buns. yum. x
Now that you’ve mentioned the lyrics I remember the song too! 😉
It’s been ages since I’ve had freshly baked hot cross buns and that photo you supplied is tantalizing. I’ve a feeling I’ll soon be on a quest to find some. With 2 weeks to go before Easter, I’d better get moving!
I hope that means you are going to makes some…
Fantastic glossy Hot Cross Buns – but what else do you expect from the St John:)
Quite – the Hot Cross Buns definitely meet their high standards 😉
Oooh you lucky thing! I’ve never had one…one of the downsides of being an American born Caribbean person? And if they take that long to make, what are the chances? So I will taste vicariously through you!
Thanks – I wish I could send you one, but I’m sure it would be dreadfully stale after 24 hours, let alone 4 or 5 days with the postal service 😦
too right. nice thought though!
These look great MD. 🙂
When you said that they aren’t cheap, what do you mean, how much do they cost?
Thanks Giovanna 😉
Mine was a sample from the first batch, but I think they cost about £2.
I’d forgotten about hot cross buns….but these do look wonderful!
Thanks – I think it’s good to forget about them and just have them close to Good Friday. The supermarkets here have been selling Hot Cross Buns and Easter Eggs since just after Christmas…
Jesus has nice buns !
Jesus and St. John 😉
I haven’t had a wonderful Hot Cross bun in years and miss them. I wished we had a bakery nearby that made them.
I just added some links to traditional recipes above – I hope that helps 😉
Thanks so much.
I loved the song when I was little, I wish my mother had had this recipe!
I bet you had other good things instead 😉
They keep popping up everywhere and I refuse to buy them cos I like homemade but I think I would love and buy these ones.
I think you would too 😉
The Hot Cross Buns here are rubbish, i almost cried with disappointment the first year i was here and never bought one again. They are such favourites in NZ. and you know i never thought of making my own so thank you for the recipes. .. I will go and have a look, raisins in rum sounds pretty good though! Pity you can’t send me a taste! Too far! c
I’m sure you’ll find a good recipe in the ones above – I wish I could send you one from the St. John. According to legend, Hot Cross Buns made on Good Friday had magical powers – people kept them all year for good luck 😉
They sound dee-lish. I have to confess I’ve never tried making them, which is pretty silly since there’s no chance of being able to buy them out here. I will wait for Chica Andaluza’s recipe post next week. I have the song on the brain too, it’s on one of my kids’ nursery rhymes CD.
Thanks and do check out the recipes above too – some sounded like they were nearly as good as the St. John 😉
Pingback: Hot Cross Buns for Good Friday « Chica Andaluza