Thursday, March 22, 2012

Retro Raspberry Buns

My first real cooking experience was in First Year of secondary school where we were taught the basics by Mrs. Dodd (god love her patience).  On the book list was a tome called "All About Home Economics" by Deirdre Madden and this was to be my grounding in food for the next three years. It was a pretty unremarkable looking book with it's oatmeal textured cover and simple line drawings, but it's what started me on the long and winding road to where I am today.  When I left school, I would refer to it every so often for certain recipes, not realising that my Mum was doing the exact same thing with my book.  I went looking for it when we bought our home a decade ago and Mummy Dearest refused to hand it over, claiming the old "possession is nine tenths of the law" rule.

Just before Christmas, I read that Deirdre's daughters were re-releasing the book to raise funds for a cause very dear to my heart, the Irish Cancer Society and I ordered a copy immediately.  I was never so happy to see a book land on the door mat and I spent a very happy afternoon reminiscing about making the world's worst mushroom soup (there was an over-emphasis on margarine in the book, so no wonder my effort was disgusting), how to set a breakfast table correctly and then I spotted my first ever edible effort - Raspberry Buns.  These are a sweet scone mix with a thumbful of raspberry jam dropped into the middle, glazed with egg and baked.  Nowadays I have a fancy schmancy food mixer to do all the rubbing in of butter to flour, but learning to do it by hand is a valuable skill, kids... Oh, and I've replaced the marge with butter. Oh, oh and these spread like wildfire on the baking sheet so use two baking sheets.  I speak from experience.

The original recipe and the "how to" diagrams

Raspberry Buns

200g Plain Flour
Pinch of Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder
75g Butter
75g Caster Sugar
1 Egg
2-3 tbsp Milk
1-2 tbsp Raspberry Jam
1 tbsp Granulated Sugar

Preheat your oven to 200c/Gas Mark 6.  Line two baking sheets with baking paper


Sieve the flour, salt & baking powder into a bowl.  Rub in the butter, then stir in the sugar.  Beat the egg & milk together and add to the dry ingredients, reserving about 1 tbsp for glazing.  Mix well and form into a soft dough.

Roll the dough into a long log shape and cut into 10 pieces.  Turn each piece on its side, make a hole in the middle with your thumb & full with raspberry jam.

Glaze the raspberry buns with the reserved milk and egg mix, sprinkle with the granulated sugar and place on the lined baking sheets, leaving much more room between each bun than you think is humanly possible.  Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.

See, I told you that they spread...  Cool on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.  Like scones, they're best the day they are made, but keep them in an airtight container for tomorrow if they're lucky enough to survive the night!


  1. That's a lovely story! I understand the joy of tracking down a long lost favorite cookbook - what did we ever do before EBay? And the buns look delicious.

    1. Ebay is truly my friend - you'd be amazed what I've been able to buy on it!

  2. I remember these buns and how proud I was bringing them home after school. I would be nearly afraid to make them again in case the reality wasn't as good as the memory!

    1. I promise they taste so much better than what we all produced in school - the difference being using proper butter instead of margarine!

  3. Hmm, I remember my mum making these when we were small. I'm going to try them out in the staffroom tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe!

  4. Hi, thank you for posting this recipe - just what I was looking for. The very first recipe our school cookery teacher introduced us to so long ago. Are they really better than before. I can't wait to try it out. Cheers.

    1. They taste so much better second time around because you use butter instead of margarine!