The first weekend of December in Sweden always makes me feel good because that's when people starts putting up the Christmas stars and candles at their windows and it makes the dark winter days/nights seem just a tad warmer.
I also decided to make my apartment a little warmer by baking this, saffron buns but in a cake form. Saffron buns are typically eaten during Christmas in Sweden and this version is much richer than the normal saffron buns which are just sweet plain buns with a saffron addition. This one is kinda of made like a cinnamon bun and then squeezed into a round mould and baked and it feeds quite a few people. This was taken from the local supermarket free Christmas baking magazine.
Ingredients (makes 10-12 pieces of buns)
50g butter or margarine
1 packet of saffron (about 0.5g)
2 dl or 200ml milk
15g fresh yeast for sweet dough or equivalent amount of dried yeast
1/2 dl or 50ml of quark/curd cheese
1/2 dl granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
5-6 dl plain flour
75g softened butter or margarine
1/2 dl granulated sugar
1-2 teaspoon vanilla sugar
Almond paste (optional)
- Crumble the fresh yeast in a bowl. Melt the butter/margarine in a small pan and add in the saffron and milk and stir together and warm/let it cool to 37°C before pouring and mixing well with the yeast.
Butter/margarine, milk and saffron mixture (looks like curry I know!)
- Add in the quark/curd cheese, sugar and salt and blend well. Gradually add all the flour except for some to be used when working the the dough later. Work the dough until it comes together for about 5 minutes in a machine or 10 minutes by hand. It should be a soft, but not sticky dough. Cover with a towel and let it proof for 30-45 minutes in a warm place in the kitchen.
- Prepare the filling by mixing the butter/margarine, sugar and vanilla sugar together in a bowl. It helps if the butter/margarine has been soften quite a bit. Grease the cake mould (24cm) and line the bottom with baking paper.
- On a floured surface, roll out the dough out to a rectangle about 25 X 50cm. Spread the filling equally and roll it up from the longer side. Cut into 4cm bits and put them in the cake mould flat side up.
- Cover the cake form with a towel again and let it proof for about 40 minutes. The buns should filled up the cake mould nicely by now. Preheat the oven to 200°C during the last 10 minutes.
- Brush with eggwash and sprinkle the pearl sugar over before baking at the lower rack of the oven for 20-25 minutes. Cool before serving.