Cinnamon buns – Swedes bake them, eat them, love them. You?
Kanelbullar or cinnamon buns are a classic at Swedish coffee parties. During the golden age of home baking, such parties turned into orgies of sweet yeast breads, small cookies, cookies with fillings, pastries and cakes. This tradition lives on in Sweden.
If you are invited to someone’s home for coffee, you always get a cinnamon bun, a cookie or a piece of cake with it. And at cafés, dainty little cookies continue to compete with all those supersized American muffins.
The whole thing with coffee, buns or cakes and socialising has a word in Swedish: fika. Fika is a social phenomenon, a legitimate reason to set aside a moment for quality time. Fika can happen at any time, morning as well as evening. It can be savoured at home, at work or in a café. It can be with colleagues, family, friends or someone you are trying to get to know. It is a tradition observed frequently, preferably several times a day.
Conversions and abbreviations
1 g = 1 gramme = 1/1,000 of a kg
1 kg = 1 kilogram = 2.2 pounds (lb)
1 dl = 1 decilitre = 100 millilitres (ml) = 1/10 of a litre = 0.4 US cup
1 litre = 10 dl = 0.9 UK quart (qt) = 1.06 US liquid quart
1 fl oz, UK = 1 fluid ounce = 1/33 UK quart = 30 ml
1 fl oz, US = 1/32 US qt = 28 ml
1 lb = 16 oz = 450 ml
1 tsp = 1 teaspoon = 1/6 oz = 5 ml
1 tbsp = 1 tablespoon = 3 teaspoons = 1/2 oz = 15 ml
°C = degrees Celsius
°F = degrees Fahrenheit
For more online conversions: onlineconversion.com.
Cinnamon bun recipe
(Please note that there may be as many cinnamon bun recipes as there are bakers out there – this is just one version.)
35 g (1¼ oz) yeast
100 g (3½ oz) sugar
300 ml (1½ cup) milk
120 g (4 oz) butter
1 tsp salt
1 tbs ground cardamom
750 g (26 oz) flour
100 g (4 oz) butter
50 g (2 oz) sugar
2 tbs cinnamon
2 tbs water
Crumble the yeast in a bowl and stir in a few tablespoons of milk. Melt the butter and pour the milk on it. Add the rest of the ingredients and knead the dough in a dough mixer for 10–15 minutes. Let the dough rise while covered at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Roll out the dough so it is about 3 mm (1/8 in) thick and 30 cm (12 in) wide. Spread the room-temperature butter on top. Make a mixture of sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it over the dough. Roll the dough the long way and cut the roll into about 25 slices. Place them with the cut edge upward in paper molds. Place on a baking sheet and let rise under a towel for about 60 minutes or until the buns have doubled in size.
Beat together the egg and water, brush the mixture carefully on the buns and sprinkle pearl sugar on top. Bake in the oven (220°C/425°F) for 5–6 minutes. Allow to cool on a rack.