Thursday, March 25, 2021

Hot Cross Buns and Easter Eggs

100,000 buns were sold on one day - Good Friday - in London by 500 sellars in 1850. But already in 1825 "demand has decreased, and so has the quality of the buns."

Easter Eggs were colored, scratched, left by a hare for some unknown reason, hunted, rolled, thrown and struck against another egg to see which cracked.

Hot cross buns generally were carried in baskets lined with green flannel (to keep warm) and topped with white cloth (for a "clean appearance").
Cornish folklore, and in Robin’s Almanack of 1753 the bun would be hung on the bacon-rack for a year.
Before his death in battle (1801) a young Pennsylvania man “engraved the battle of Bunker’s Hill” (1775) on an egg boiled “in logwood, which dyes the shell crimson, and though this colour will not rub off, you may, with a pin, scratch on them any figure…”
Some eggs had complex designs or colored (as in some upcoming talks)
By the 1880s packaged dyes were advertised and sold.
So what to do with the eggs. The "eggs preserved very carefully in the corner-cupboard; each egg being the occupant of a deep, long-stemmed ale-glass, through which the inscription could be read without removing it." [1830] or... hunt for the hidden eggs.
Or go door to door
Easter Monday games: play catch ...
Easter Egg Roll in DC when schools were closed that Monday. Photo 1889
In 1836 "New-York, eggs, died or stained with a variety of colours, are displayed for sale on Easter-Monday, by grocers, hucksters, fruiterers, and other venders of edible refreshments. These are called paas-eggs, or pasch-eggs." Two boys would hit the end of the egg held by another. The egg which cracked would be given to the winner.

PAST BLOG POSTS with more info
Hot-cross Buns - 100,000 sold HERE
Hot Cross Buns - kept for a year HERE
Easter Egg games, Roll, Bunker Hill battle egg, Germany 1878, Decorating 1830 HERE
Bacon Racks HERE

Mar 27 Sat 12 Pysanky. “traditional Ukrainian Easter egg… pure beeswax, a candle or heat source to melt the beeswax, tools called Kistky, and jars of brilliant dyes.“ Annette Wichmann. Kensington Art Supply HERE

Mar 27 Sat 4-5:15 Pisanki for Beginners. Polish Easter eggs decorated. Evan Kolber. Eagle-Orzel Educational and Cultural Exchange, Inc $15 HERE

Mar 28 Sun 10-12 Learn with us Polish Easter Traditions. “A lot of food, Easter Basket, and painted eggs.” Polish Klan Association HERE

Mar 29 Mon 10-11:30 Velikonoce (aka Easter). Czech and Slovak baking, decorating eggs and traditions. Czech and Slovak Society - University of Leeds HERE

Mar 31 Wed 2-30 Baking for Easter. Donegal, Ireland. Chef Brian McDermott €25 HERE

Ap 1 Thur 11-1 Historic Hot Cross Buns Workshop. 1830s recipe. Paul Couchman, The Regency Cook. £20 – £27.54 replays if asked HERE Apr 2 Fri 5-7 AM HERE

Apr 1 Thur 1:30-3:30 Make a Traditional Italian Easter Dish. A Genoese savory pie of spinace, cheese and hard boiled eggs. Cook with Luca £11.37 HERE

Apr 1 Thur 8-9 Flips, Fizzes, Sours & Nogs. “Instead of boiling eggs to dye this Easter, drink them instead.” Tammy Coxen. Tammy’s Tastings. $19 per computer HERE

Ap 2 Fri 5-7AM Historic Hot Cross Buns Workshop. 1830s recipe. Paul Couchman, The Regency Cook. £27.54 replays if asked HERE HERE

Ap 2 Fri 12:30-2 Tsoureki. Greek enriched bread with red dyed eggs. Chef Kit. $3 HERE

Apr 3 Sat 1 Italian Easter Culinary Traditions. “foods and dishes consumed during Easter time in Italy, their history and what they mean to Italian food culture.” Curious Appetite Travel $30 HERE

Apr 3 Sat 1-2:30 Easter in Italy: Traditions, Celebrations, and Holiday Foods. giant chocolate eggs, Colombe di Pasqua, Salami with boiled eggs, fresh beans and pecorino, Casatiello (baked into a ring topped with whole eggs)… Cecilia Sitran. Context Travel Conversations $36.50 HERE

Apr 3 Sat 4 [9pmCET also Apr 10] Discover Seville’s Holy Week Traditions & Cook Espinacas con Garbanzos. (Andalusia’s spinach and chickpea stew). Maria. Devour Tours. €19 per screen HERE

Apr 3 Sat 5-6:30 Cassata Siciliana–The Queen of Easter Cakes. Sicily. “sponge cake, sweet ricotta, and marzipan, decorated with beautiful candied fruits…marzipan [for] classic Sicilian Easter treats such as Agnello di Pasqua (marzipan lambs) or La Frutta Martorana (marzipan fruit).” Michael Sampson. Context Travel Conversations $36.50 HERE

Apr 4 Sun 11-12:30 Russia's FabergĂ© Eggs: Easter Gifts of the Tsars. “Fifty-two Easter eggs, produced in St Petersburg between 1885 and 1917 by the “goldsmith to the Imperial Crown” Carl FabergĂ©.” Vladimir Ivanov. Context Travel Conversations $36.50 HERE

Apr 10 Sat 2-4 Greek Easter Bread (Tsoureki) Cooking Class. Sweet bread. Dynamo Chef Domenica Merante. $25 HERE


Crane, Walter. The Baby's Bouquet: A fresh bunch of old rhymes and tunes. London: 188-
Hone, William. The Every-day Book. London: 1825
Mayhew, Henry. London Labor and the London Poor. 1851
National Nursery Book c1870
Poor Robin's Almanack. London: 1753
Rowlandson 1820 image, lady at door. British Library online
Smith, Horatio. Festivals, games, and amusements: ancient and modern. NY: 1836

©2021 Patricia Bixler Reber
Researching Food History HOME

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