Easter, unlike Christmas, is a holiday that gets more enjoyable as I get older. Sure, it’s been a while since anyone’s hidden any foil-wrapped eggs in the garden for me (if you’re reading this Mum, it’s not too late!), but the promise of four commitment-free days off work means more than a choc-till-you-drop marathon ever could.
Still, it wouldn’t be Easter Sunday without some treats, which is why a few years ago I started a delicious new tradition I'd like to share with you. I call it: "Hot Cross Buns and Beer for Breakfast", and I look forward to it every year.
The buns vary from year to year. Dad makes some amazing ones, but this year I’ll be making Dish Food Editor Claire Aldous’ Hot Cross Scones (pictured above). I was a bit sceptical when she told me about the concept, but after trying them I was instantly sold – they've got all the flavour and spice of classic buns but with the crunchy, exterior of a scone. Delicious!
The beer is always the same. Emerson’s Taieri George is a luscious dark ale released every year on March 6 – the birthday of Richard Emerson’s father, George - so it's always around at Easter time. It also happens to taste a bit like Hot Cross Buns, as it's brewed with warming spices including cinammon and nutmeg, organic clover honey from Central Otago, and has notes of ginger, raisins and orange peel.
I like to sit outside in the crisp April sun with family or friends, eat one or two freshly-buttered and toasted buns and sip slowly on a glass of the cool, spicy ale. It sets me up nicely for a day of reading, napping and, if I'm lucky, perhaps finding a chocolate egg or two.
Emerson's Taeiri George is available from selected craft beer outlets and liquor stores. Alice found hers at Glengarry Vic Park.