A couple of weeks ago I made several references to the fact that I’d spent a (very domestic) Sunday morning doing a spot of baking and – the dreaded – ironing. Now that all the blog-birthday frivolities are over it’s time to share the better half of that morning’s labours – Swedish Cinnamon Buns.
I’ve always been slightly scared of baking with yeast. No other ingredient has ever stopped me in my kitchen exploits (although granted, the octopus was an unmitigated, rubbery disaster), except yeast. It’s a bit pathetic really. It means I’ve never made a loaf of bread – I think we can all agree that using the breadmaker doesn’t count as baking, delicious as its produce is – not even a measly Chelsea Bun! But these times are a changing, and I’ve done a little manning up.
The Swedish (whose tourist board provided this recipe), it would seem, are quite into their buns. Take that as you will, but they would have it with a healthy dose of cinnamon – none of this icing nonsense that the Belgians and the Americans are in to – and use it as a snack to accompany coffee when they’ve guests about. In fact they like their kanelbullar so much that they even have a national day of celebration for it! Kanelbullar Dag – 4th October, if you’re interested – has been marked for the last few years by bakers up and down Sweden, and I think I might start joining them.
This recipe is really straightforward and whilst that nightmare ingredient might put some off as it initially did me, I would thoroughly recommend using this as the perfect excuse to get over the baking fear. I took the end result into work with me the day after I’d made them; I don’t think it would be a stretch to say that they didn’t last long.
Swedish Cinnamon Buns
For the dough:
50g granulated sugar
1 pinch of salt
1 tsp cinnamon
600g plain flour
For the filling:
100g caster sugar
4 tsp cinnamon
For the Glaze:
2 tbsp water
Pearl sugar/demerara sugar to decorate
1. Crumble the yeast into a bowl and mix with a few tablespoons of the milk. Melt the butter and pour the yeast/milk mix on top. Add in the other dough ingredients and knead for 10-15 mins (I cheated and got the dough hooks for my mixer out of the cupboard).
2. Put the dough mix into a lightly-oiled dish (it makes it easier to get out), cover in clingfilm and allow it to rise at room temperature for 30 minutes.
3. Roll out the dough – it should be about 3mm thick and 30cm wide. Spread the butter over the dough, then make a mixture of the cinnamon and sugar before scattering it evenly over the dough.
4. Roll the dough up (the long way, like a Swiss Roll) and then chop into equal slices – the mix should make about 25.
5. Place the bun dough into muffin cases on a tray*, cover with a tea towel and allow it to rise for about an hour (or the buns have doubled in size).
6. Beat together the egg and water before brushing over the buns. Sprinkle with sugar and bake in the centre of the oven for around 10 minutes at 225ºC, or until they are golden.
*The original recipe told me to put them in muffin cases, but if I did this again I would probably place them side-by-side on a baking sheet, then tear them apart when I wanted to eat them. I would have put this in the recipe, but since the photos show them in bun cases I thought I’d go for a little bit of continuity.