In Sweden, Christmas isn’t Christmas without saffransbullar, pepparkakor, glögg and julmust.
Last year, I blogged about the Swedish Christmas flavours: Pepparkakor, Glögg & Julmust. With IKEA all around, you don’t need to travel all the way to Sweden to enjoy a Swedish Christmas – there you’ll find the pepparkakor, glögg and julmust. However, the list is still not complete.
What is missing is the freshly baked Saffransbullar.
Saffransbullar or Lussebullar are saffron buns flavoured with golden saffron and dark raisins and often shaped into ‘Lucia cats’. I started to bake my own lussebullar since I first learned to bake it in school last year. I use the saffransbullar recipe from Sweden.se, tried, tested and recommended. This is a good ‘get-baking-together’ activity with your friends, whether you are in Sweden or not. Well, let’s get baking.
Saffransbullar – Ingredients
1 g saffron threads
50 g yeast
200 g sugar
300 ml milk
150 g butter
1 tsp salt
750 g flour
100 g raisins
2 tbs water
To make ‘Lucia cats’, grind the saffron along with a cube of sugar, using a mortar and pestle. Crumble the yeast in a bowl and stir in a few tablespoons of milk. Melt the butter and pour on the milk.
Add the rest of the ingredients, except the raisins, and knead the dough in a dough mixer for 10 minutes. Carefully mix in most of the raisins, cover the dough and let it rise for 30 minutes at room temperature.
Divide the dough into 25 pieces and roll the buns in an oblong shape, about 10 cm (4 in) long. Cover them and let rest for 10 minutes, then roll them twice as long and twist the ends of each bun in opposite directions to form a sort of figure 8. Put one raisin in the middle of each half figure 8.
Place on a greased baking sheet and let rise under a towel for about 90 minutes, or until the buns have doubled in size. Bake in the oven at 220°C (425°F) for 5 minutes. Beat together the egg and water, brush the mixture on the buns. Allow to cool on the baking sheet.
Da-dahhh, baking complete. Bon appétit and have yourself a Merry Swedish Christmas.