Where Did Jamaica’s Easter Tradition of Eating Bun & Cheese Come From?
Even during the current pandemic, Jamaicans and members of the diaspora have been sticking to the annual tradition of eating bun and cheese during the Easter season.
A week or two before Good Friday, the shelves of supermarkets and smaller stores are stacked with bun and tin cheese as residents begin to purchase in bulk, in preparation for the holidays. Those abroad also search high and low for Jamaican shops and stores that possibly supply “Easter bun”. But while Jamaicans enjoy this delicacy every year, not many people are aware of how the tradition even began.
Eating Bun and Cheese was originally a British tradition in the United Kingdom during the 1600 and 1700s. In the UK, small, round, and slightly sweet buns, called hot cross buns, were made with a cross cut into the tops. Hot Cross bun and consumption of the buns were supposedly forbidden in England, except during specific times, one of which was Good Friday. The cross came to symbolize the crucifixion of Jesus.
Variations of the hot cross bun were made in Jamaica, with the same tradition of eating it during Easter. Eventually, like with many other baked staple goods, Jamaicans added cheese into the mix and began the tradition of a bun and cheese sandwich.
Curtesy of CaribbeanNationalWeekly.com