just a smidgen

Lussekatter St Lucia Buns Recipe

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I thought if I’m decorating my home with bright Scandinavian whites and reds..

it might be fun to also explore some of the Scandinavian food traditionally served at this time of year.

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These lovely Lussekatter Saint Lucia Buns are also often called Saffron Buns,
they’re shaped like an S and studded with two raisins at each end.

{ and Smidge starts with an S 😉 }

In Scandinavia, Advent is celebrated on the four Sundays before Christmas Day.

These are often baked on Saint Lucia Day which falls on December 13th, the Friday before their Third Sunday Advent.

Saint Lucia is thought to be a young woman who comes bearing lights and sweets.

Sometimes there is a procession led by a young girl dressed in white, wearing a crown of candles { or lights },
with other young girls each carrying one light following behind.

Doesn’t that just sound heavenly?

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This Saveur recipe was so forgiving,
I’ve not been feeling well, so I’ve had a bit of a baking hiatus.

Let’s just say.. for starters one should read a recipe through before beginning.

But all was not lost, the eggs were still added.. late.. as was the salt, and the cubes of butter had to be softened quickly.

My poor KitchenAid Mixer was given such a work out!
I was afraid to leave it, fearing it’s convulsing might cause it to crash onto the floor..
and it smelled as if it was overheating.

Finally, we left the dough to double for an hour.
We took our little Bella for the longest of walks ever and completely forgot all about our St. Lucia buns
..left sitting directly on my little heating pad.
(Kept on low, a heating pad is a great way to keep dough warm on a cold wintery day.)
I had meant to lay a towel between the bowl and the heating pad.

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Such is life, as my mother often says.

So, undaunted, I punched down the dough, divided it into 8 wedges and each of those into 4.

To my delight, the dough rolled out easily and was so pillowy soft and pliable, just the way I’d hoped..

I used red craisins and the suggested raisins..

and baked them a wee bit too long.. { sigh }

But in the end, the Lussekatter Saint Lucia Buns were so subtly sweet, had such a lovely tender saffron crumb and a nice crisp crust.
I’d make these again for certain.. maybe on December 13th.

You know..

I think if you allow forgiveness.. and mistakes..

and keep trying,

sometimes everything surprisingly just comes together on it’s own in the end.

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Lussekatter St Lucia Buns Recipe
 
Ingredients
  • 2 packets of 8 g active dried yeast
  • 2 cups whole milk, heated slightly to 115 F
  • 2 tsp saffron, lightly crushed
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 6 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 12 tbsp butter, unsalted, softened and cut into tablespoon slices
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 3 large baking sheets
  • parchment or silpat
  • craisins or large raisins
Instructions
  1. In the bowl of your mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the warm milk, the two packets of yeast, saffron and 1 tsp sugar, then let sit for 10 minutes for the yeast to activate and become foamy. This also allows the saffron to steep in the warm milk.
  2. With the mixer on slow, add the flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and 2 eggs. When the dough begins to form and cling to the paddle, remove the paddle and put on the dough hook attachment.
  3. Continue to knead the dough with the machine on medium speed until the dough pulls away from the sides and becomes elastic. This takes about 7 to 8 minutes. Watch the machine and turn it down if the dough is too stiff for the machine to handle.
  4. Take the dough out and put it into a large, lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set it in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour.
  5. The dough should have doubled in size after 1 hour. Punch it down and then take it out of the bowl, Shape it into a circle and cut it into 8 pieces by cutting in half, half again and half each piece again until you have 8 wedges. Cut each of the 8 wedges into 4 pieces. Using both hands, gently roll the dough and lengthen it into a rope about 8" long.
  6. Beginning at one end of the rope, roll the dough spirally clockwise, until you get to the center. Beginning on the other end, roll in the opposite direction until you reach the center. This makes an "S" shape.
  7. Place each one on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Cover the baking sheets with plastic wrap and set in a warm location to rise again for about 30 minutes.
  8. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  9. Remove the plastic wrap and tuck a cranberry or raisin in the center of each end in the center of the spirals. Brush the tops and sides with an egg lightly beaten with the one tablespoon of water.
  10. Bake until the buns are golden brown and cooked through. My convection oven baked these very quickly in only 14 minutes and were quite dark. So if you are using a convection oven, check on these buns at about 10 minutes and then bake time accordingly.

I’ll be back with some photos of my Scandinavian tablescape this weekend!

Love, Smidge 5

 

Lussekatter St Lucia Buns Recipe
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 2 packets of 8 g active dried yeast
  • 2 cups whole milk, heated slightly to 115 F
  • 2 tsp saffron, lightly crushed
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 6 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 12 tbsp butter, unsalted, softened and cut into tablespoon slices
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 3 large baking sheets
  • parchment or silpat
  • craisins or large raisins
Instructions
  1. In the bowl of your mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the warm milk, the two packets of yeast, saffron and 1 tsp sugar, then let sit for 10 minutes for the yeast to activate and become foamy. This also allows the saffron to steep in the warm milk.
  2. With the mixer on slow, add the flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and 2 eggs. When the dough begins to form and cling to the paddle, remove the paddle and put on the dough hook attachment.
  3. Now add the softened butter slices, knead on medium high speed until the dough pulls away from the sides and becomes elastic. This takes about 7 to 8 minutes. Watch the machine and turn it down if the dough is too stiff for the machine to handle.
  4. Take the dough out and put it into a large, lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set it in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour.
  5. The dough should have doubled in size after 1 hour. Punch it down and then take it out of the bowl, Shape it into a circle and cut it into 8 pieces by cutting in half, half again and half each piece again until you have 8 wedges. Cut each of the 8 wedges into 4 pieces. Using both hands, gently roll the dough and lengthen it into a rope about 8" long.
  6. Beginning at one end of the rope, roll the dough spirally clockwise, until you get to the center. Beginning on the other end, roll in the opposite direction until you reach the center. This makes an "S" shape.
  7. Place each one on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Cover the baking sheets with plastic wrap and set in a warm location to rise again for about 30 minutes.
  8. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  9. Remove the plastic wrap and tuck a cranberry or raisin in the center of each end in the center of the spirals. Brush the tops and sides with an egg lightly beaten with the one tablespoon of water.
  10. Bake until the buns are golden brown and cooked through. My convection oven baked these very quickly in only 14 minutes and were quite dark. So if you are using a convection oven, check on these buns at about 10 minutes and then bake time accordingly.
 

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