- a blog about food and value

Hot cross buns: stupid, cheap or delicious?

hot cross bunsHot cross buns are a waste of space. There is no justifiable reason why anyone would put one of these through their gobs at Easter time, just because it’s Easter time. If you are going to shovel something sweet into your face, it should be a proper cake or chocolate, not some silly little currant-filled sugar bun.

And yet, this ancient tradition, with the cross of the bun representing the crucifix, will probably outlive me and my grumpiness. Pay me no heed. The people of Ireland – particularly the people of Monaghan and other northern areas – seem to need their “cup of tea and a wee bun.”

Last week, I received a deluge of hot cross buns to sample. One courier, delightfully, initially got the wrong house and jammed them into my neighbour’s letterbox. These neighbours, a house-share of three guys from different parts of Europe, were a little baffled to receive four slightly pounded buns. So I told them that, in Ireland, at Easter time, it is tradition to send each other buns in the post. We bemoaned that these buns were not home-made, and sent them off to bake some for everyone they know, buy some envelopes and stamps, and get posting. They fell for it. Ah, we’ll tell them the truth on Easter Monday, which is also April Fool’s Day, my favourite holiday of the year.

Anyway, if you like hot cross buns, Aldi’s are, I grudgingly admit, very good value. A packet of four is just 69c and, I have to admit, were pretty damn good as far as these pointless cakes go. By contrast, a single hot cross bun in Lidl was around 35c. I reckon Aldi’s deal is a bit of a bargain if slightly spiked currant cakes float your boat. I smothered mine with raspberry jam and hid my shame by calling them a “butter and raspberry jam delivery vehicle.”

Also this Easter, and for several years now, chocolate Easter eggs now have more monetary value than the Cypriot euro. Most supermarkets do three for 5 deals. Apparently, Easter flowers are now also a thing, according to the various special offer leaflets floating around. YES YOU MUST ALSO BUY FLOWERS AT EASTER TIME NOW SPEND SPEND SPEND.

Do you like hot cross buns, or buying things at Easter time?


  1. You’re right – I’m from Monaghan and my dad loves an aul hot cross bun! He’s especially partial to the fancy schmancy ones from Marks & Spencer though…

  2. As buns go, they are alright. This is, if they are treated like any other refined white bread roll eg hot and buttered with jam or some other filling.

    Cakes they are not however and for some reason some people bring them into the office expecting them to get eaten, stone cold out of a packet with nothing to put in them.

    As if we don’t have enough empty calories in our diets already!

  3. In the 60’s both my Grandmother’s baked hotcross buns, they were delicious with a lovey texture. Bewley’s mad great ones as well back then. The ones for sale now seem just pap.