Easter would not be complete without a hot cross bun and let’s face it, you can buy a packet of 6 for next to nothing so what secrets makes a Rex Hot Cross Bun so much more special than anything else you could choose this Easter?
- Brioche. Rex Hot Cross Buns are hand-made from our own light Brioche bun recipe meaning they include low quantities of patisserie butter, free range eggs, unhomogenised Lacey’s Farm milk along with the organic Shipton Mill flour we choose. This is a truly gourmet bun made carefully by our own experts in the Rex Bakery with very specially selected premium ingredients
- Long fermentation. We make our Hot Cross Buns over 2 days so that like our breads, the organic flour is properly fermented because the yeast has time to denature it. This means they are easily digestible, even if you feel you are sensitive to consuming grains & gluten and to bloating. This is a very Healthy Hot Cross Bun!
- Flavour lift. We add sultanas and mixed peel, which is orange & lemon peel cooked in sugar syrup to preserve it. We use lemon and orange zest for that little undefinable flavour lift. We select spices such as a mixture of ground nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger and unlike the mass baking industry, we never use “liquid spice flavouring” which comes in a bottle and is sold for convenience & ease rather than food provenance, quality, taste. Somehow the yeast doesn’t seem to like the real spices so it’s a challenge for the skilled baker to manage the dough mix – but it’s all worth it.
We first opened the doors of Rex 3 years ago shortly before Easter and we were then advised by good friends that the cross has a Christian meaning and that we shouldn’t really sell Hot Cross Buns until Good Friday, the 1st day after the end of the 40-day Lent fasting period.
However major supermarkets sell them now all year round and the organic flour & water paste cross on the top actually dates back to Pagan Saxan times when the buns were made in Spring for the goddess Eostre, and “Long Friday” marked the end of the fasting to cleanse from heavy winter foods in preparation for Ostara (Spring Equinox). Both Eostre & Ostara sound linked and as if they could be derivative of today’s Easter.
Good Friday was not marked as the day Christ died until the 4th Century AD and may be named to be derived from God’s Friday, just as goodbye comes from “God be with ye”. We’ve already sold many hundreds of Rex Hot Cross Buns, will be opening at 7am Good Friday to sell many hundreds more on the day alone and will continue to offer our classic, very well made bun right across the broad Easter period. The British Hot Cross brioche-style bun can be found universally around the Anglicised Western World including Australasia, South Africa, America.
But for those that don’t like Hot Cross Buns or sultanas.. other countries in Northern Europe & Russia have special alternative Easter breads and cakes and at this time of the year we have a 4th secret:
4. Vegan Chocolate Cross Buns. With Belgian dark chocolate flavour, dairy free and no honey – these are a great alternative for children, dairy allergics & vegans.
At Rex we love making spiced sticky buns like Hot Cross Buns, so if you would like something similar ALL YEAR ROUND, please let us know.
Note – we will be CLOSED Easter Sunday and will operate Bank Holiday opening hours on Easter Monday so 8-2.