SPRING has finally arrived at long last with the Easter weekend fast approaching.

This means that for most people Lent is almost over, and something to look forward to our well-deserved treats after 40 days of resisting the things we love.

Hot cross buns are probably the first thing we think about putting on the shopping list for the Easter weekend, as we all love hot cross buns toasted and smothered with butter on Easter Sunday morning.

Fortunately for me the season starts in early January with tough kneading, because I know that hot cross buns should only be baked on Good Friday marking the ending of Lent, with the cross on top of the bun representing the Crucifixion of Jesus and the spices used to embalm him.

During Elizabeth I’s reign it was forbidden to sell hot cross buns, and they were reserved for Good Friday alone.

Frantic street cries came from the bakers yelling at customers to buy their hot cross buns - which went something like this ‘’Hot cross buns, get them while they’re warm and eat them by the ton, one a penny, two a penny, hot cross buns’’’.

I think I’ve missed the daughters and sons bit out, I sort of know the lyrics to this nursery rhyme song, but keep mixing it up with three blind mice.

As a way to get around the law people began baking them at home, and the law became too difficult to enforce and eventually rescinded with a hoppy ending!

Nowadays hot cross buns do not cost a penny sadly, but a pound from the supermarket... Bargain!

Making hot cross buns at home can sometimes be time-consuming because of the kneading and proving stages - however have you ever considered making hot cross bun scones instead?

A softly-spiced, buttery scone full of zesty fruits with a marzipan twist – this is a real Easter Simnal hot cross bun cracked up – and a recipe having the best of both worlds.

Just think about this: if you’re the first one up on Easter Sunday, take the opportunity to fill your home with lovely Easter smells while mindlessly eating an entire bag of Cadburys Mini Eggs to celebrate the breaking of Lent.

MANY Eggs can be dangerous to have around while baking in the kitchen at any time.

Easter scones do take half the time and effort of making hot cross buns, which certainly makes the Easter bunny a real smart Egghead too.

Happy Easter!