Ok, I'm just going to do all bakery related posts at once and get it over with. I will be having a piece of Irish Soda bread on St. Patrick's day. And I will have one hot cross bun (lent starts Wednesday).
Since I'm building these splurges into my diet, I'd like to make them the best examples available.
For hot cross buns, for years Boudin just set the standard. To me a hot cross bun must have a white icing cross, not that yellow glop. It must taste like a bun and not a version of those Wonder bread types Safeway sells. So, based on that over the years I've rejected Creighton's, Shuberts, Eppler's, and Neldham's.
That Boudine bun was perfect. The hot cross bun fans I know would issue 'mmmmm's' after the first bite. Then last year, THEY CHANGED IT !!! Wrapped it in plastic. Still passible, but a sad imitation.
Virginia bakery in Berkely does a pretty good hot cross bun which is a bridge to Irish Soda bread.
I think Virginia does an outstanding Irish Soda bread. Not too puckery. Another nod to Boudin in this category. It came through on the Irish soda bread admirably last year. I also like Arizmundi.
Any new ideas?