Well, ive been posting recipes inspired from my Cypriot side, so i figured time to post something from my Swedish side. Whether you’re swedish or not, everyones heard of or seen the infamous cinnamon bun. In Sweden a cinnamon bun (aka. “bullar”) is crucial during the necessary “Fika” time – a “necessary break” you take everyday (work-day or not) at around midday with coffee and a bun. To this day, my mormor / grandma, at 11:30 every single day, sits down with her coffee and a homemade cinnamon bun. It doesnt matter where she is, or what shes doing, she must sit down for a cinnamon bun and a latte at 11:30. Going and staying with her in the summer I used to love that time; we never spoke during it – just enjoyed our coffee and our bun in silence, me reading my book, she filling in her crossword. I would eat it by unrolling it from the outside-in, she would eat it by biting into it from the top [In Sweden people always notice how you eat your cinnamon bun, since people tend to eat it in different ways – funny that] Sitting with my grandma at those times, these are the moment you remember. Thats what i love about food – Its not just “food” – its memory, its comfort, its sharing, its bonding.
I also remember when i was quite a bit younger, and i was the only person in a cypriot school who used to bring a round circular strange looking thing (aka the cinnamon bun) in my lunch box for our second break. Didnt take too long before my friends got used to it, and before i know it, whenever it was that time of month when mother used to make them, my friends used to expect one themselves and I was bringing along 10 buns into school to give to my peers and teachers. Even today, amongst some of my friends, if i say come over for “Fika” they know exactly what i mean – Coffee and a cinnamon bun! Michelle, i believe you even had a Fika today with hubby? Whats the verdict?
The Swedes looove cinnamon in sweeter things or sprinkled in coffee, whereas the Cypriots love it in savoury food. No surprise then that i absolutely love cinnamon in anything! And apparently there’s good reason to it health-wise too. More recent research [and ancient Chinese and middle-eastern medicine], has shown how good cinnamon is in it having natural medicinal properties, regulating blood sugar, improving sensitivity to insulin making it a powerful anti-diabetic, soothing sore muscles and being anti-inflammatory.
Well, i believe its Fika time 🙂
Ingredients (makes about 15 buns)
- 75g non-dairy butter & 2tbsp / 75γρ νηστίσιμο βούτυρο & 2κσ.
- 155ml plant-based milk & 1tbsp / 155ml γάλα φυτικής προέλευσης & 1κσ.
- 8gr dried yeast / 8γρ μαγιά
- 60gr white granulated sugar (and 8-10tbsp more for sprinkling) / 60γρ άσπρη κρυσταλλική ζάχαρη (και 8-10 κσ. έξτρα)
- 1/2tsp salt / 1/2κγ. αλάτι
- 1tsp ground cardamom / 1κγ. αλεσμένο κάρδαμο
- 1tsp cinnamon (and more for sprinkling) / 1κγ. κανέλα (και έξτρα)
- 410gr all-purpose flour / 410γρ αλεύρι για όλες τις χρήσεις
- 1tsp baking powder / 1κγ. baking powder
- 1/2tsp baking soda / 1/2κγ. σόδα μαγειρικής
- muffin or cupcake paper cups / χάρτινα “ποτηράκια” για muffins ή cupcakes
- Icing sugar (or pearl sugar) for garnish ** / ζάχαρη άχνη για το γαρνίρισμα
Directions (takes 70 minutes with rising time)
- Melt butter and place in a large mixing bowl. To this add cold milk until reaches luke-warm temperature
- Add 55gr of sugar, 1tsp of cinnamon and 1tsp of cardamom to the milk/butter mixture. Then sprinkle in the yeast.
- Separately, sift together the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Add this flour mixture to the yeast/milk mixture slowly slowly and use a wooden spoon to mix until you can eventually use your hands when it resembles a dough
- Start to knead it on a clean surface so that everything combines (if your mixture is too wet – add more flour) [dont over-knead it]. Once you’ve kneaded it into a ball-like shape, place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film and then a kitchen cloth. Place in a dry warm area of the kitchen (unless you’re in cyprus – place anywhere and it’ll be fine haha).
- Allow this to rise until its double in size (minimum 30minutes)
- Pre-heat your oven to 210 degrees C
- Cut dough in half and roll it out (on a floured surface) with a floured rolling pin into a rectangle shape. Butter the surface of the rectangle (roughly 1tbsp butter) with the back of a butter knife. Sprinkle this with 4-5 tbsp white sugar (you can add more sugar if you like them sweeter!) and 1.5tbsp cinnamon.
- Roll it up lengthwise and cut into even sized pieces (about 4cm pieces), not using the far ends of your roll up [see picture above!]. Put your “pieces” into muffin paper-cups on a baking tray. Cover these with a kitchen towel and allow them to rise once more (roughly 10 minutes). Press them down to very slightly flatten them with the back of a spoon
- Lightly brush them with plant-based milk, sprinkle the tops with some white sugar and a bit more cinnamon. Place them in the middle of the oven for 8 – 10 minutes (these cook quickly so make sure you stay in front of the oven and dont burn them – mine were done in 8 minutes!)
- Once they have cooled down, sprinkle with icing sugar or pearl sugar ** and (optional:) a little bit of agave syrup (or honey)
** Normally these should be sprinkled with Swedish pearl sugar ( Pärlsocker ) but since you cannot buy these outside Sweden (we bring them over whenever we travel there) i’ve used icing sugar for the purpose of this recipe.