Czech Easter Buns (Jidáše AKA Juda’s Rope)

Czech Easter Buns (Jidáše AKA Juda’s Rope)
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  • 500g plain flour
    70g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
    2 egg yolks
    300ml single cream
    80g sugar
    25g fresh yeast (c. 9g instant yeast)
    4g salt
    freshly ground nutmeg
    grated lemon rind (1/4 lemon)

    1 egg
    2 tablespoons of honey
    1 tablespoon of unsalted butter
    These buns, mostly shaped to look like a noose or a rolled rope, to remind us of the fate of Judas who hanged himself after betraying Jesus, are traditionally baked in the evening of Spy (Holy) Wednesday. The legend goes that if you eat one of these buns during the sunrise on Maundy Thursday, you will be protected from human betrayal, snake bites and even bee stings for the following year. If you cannot face getting up before the sunrise, you should be still quite safe having these buns for the Maundy Thursday breakfast.


  • Mix the yeast, sugar and 100ml of lukewarm cream, add a spoon of the flour and let this starter rise.

    Mix the rest of the ingredients, add the starter, mix again and work the dough until it does not stick. Knead for further 5-10 minutes until completely smooth and elastic.

    Shape the dough into a ball, place into a bowl, cover with clingfilm and let rise for one hour or until doubled in volume. Take the dough out, knead again to remove air bubbles and split initially into quarters, then into eights and finally into 24 equal parts.

    Roll each small ball into a thin rope about 20-25cm long.  Shape the rolls into knots and place on a tray with baking paper. The above amount should cover two trays.

    Whisk the egg yolks with two spoons of water and brush the surface of the rolled buns with the mixture and let them rise for further 20 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 190C (270F, gas mark 5).

    Brush the raised buns with the egg again and put in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes until golden and firm.

    In the meantime, warm the honey and add the diced butter, mixing until fully melted. Remove the buns from the oven and brush them immediately with the thick honey glaze. Eat only once the buns are completely cold.

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