How to bake the perfect cinnamon buns

The Guardian has been making Scandi treats this week and searching for the perfect cinnamon bun recipe: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2014/may/22/how-to-bake-perfect-cinnamon-buns

I haven’t tried this version yet – but it is a little different from how I would bake a batch. I have never, ever, had good results with fast action yeast sachets (what am I doing wrong?!) and I would make rather smaller buns – one cake of seven seems a slightly US take on these, they must be huge! Have you tried this ‘perfect’ recipe?

My favourite recipe is the one in Sju Sorters Sommarkakor by Cecilia Vikhblad (the Swedish Mary Berry, she even judges the Swedish version of Bake Off).

Image

But if I want to read a recipe in English I use the one by the awesome Scandinavian Kitchen:  http://scandikitchen.typepad.com/scandikitchen/2011/05/by-popular-demand-swedish-cinnamon-buns-recipe-kanelbullar.html  I have always had success with these recipes and made lovely soft kanelbullar. Scandinavian Kitchen also sells all the ingredients you could need to create your bullar.

If you are a little too far from London to do your Scandinavian grocery shopping there, do not fear as you can buy/improvise almost everything:

– Ground cardamom for the dough – yes it is a little difficult to find. As well as grinding some cardamom pods with your pestle and mortar/ rolling pin and chopping board/ blender/ hammer and chisel, you can also buy ready ground cardamom at some health food shops or international groceries (I found it on a local market stall which sold vegan products, herbs and spices, and it was only about 65p!).

– Pearl sugar – you could just swap out this (for me, essential) topping for regular sugar (or miss it out altogether I suppose) but I’ve found a handful of crushed up sugar pearls http://www.sainsburys.co.uk/shop/gb/groceries/decorations/sainsburys-cake-decorations–white-sugar-pearls-80g looks the part and they add a satisfying crunch. Apparently jam sugar can also work.

– Fresh yeast – available at most local bakeries, it can also be found in the in-store bakeries at Sainsbury’s and Tesco. As mentioned before, I just can’t get fast-action to work!

Do you have any tips on Scandinavian baking at home? Or tips for the perfect kanelbullar?

Advertisements

Blue and gold wooden spoons

Blue and yellow handled wooden sppons

Maybe it’s the Swedish colours on the handles of these wooden spoons, but for me there’s a definite help-yourself, dinner at the summer house vibe from these…

£9.50, M&S

http://www.marksandspencer.com/2-pack-wooden-spatula-set/p/p22276995


Scandimania

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall in Sweden

I hope everyone is recovered from last night’s big Bridge finale!

Tonight there is more Scandinavian action on TV, but of a gentler variety. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is journeying around Sweden, Denmark and Norway to find out what makes these countries so happy and, of course, to do some cooking.

In the first episode, airing tonight, he will go hunting in northern Sweden and cook for his hunting buddies. He will also be stopping off in Stockholm and Gothenburg and find time for a visit to the ABBA museum. And by the looks of the trailer, he gets to try some Surströmming too!

The series begins tonight on Channel 4 at 8pm and will also be available for catch up on 4OD.

The Channel 4 site for the series is here:  http://www.channel4.com/programmes/scandimania

Are you watching? Let me know what you thought of the show when you’ve seen it!


Scandi snacks for The Bridge finale

image

Are you ready for tonight’s big finale? I have baked kanelbullar (fresh yeast and sugar pearls available from Sainsbury’s) and bought lördagsgodis (at wilko) and Estella crisps (from the international supermarket). I can’t wait!

Do  you have any favourite Scandinavian snacks? Where do you find them in Britain?

After 11pm, feel free to leave your comments on The Bridge finale (no spoilers until after it has aired please, even if you have been at Nordicana today!).


Scandi kitchen in the Express

If you are close to a newsagent, then you can find a range of Scandi recipes in today’s  Sunday Express. I’m on my way to get one now!

Check out @Scanditwitchen’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/Scanditwitchen/status/424839778765639680

Updated: There are six recipes online now: Anchovy gratin, kale salad and apple cake: 6 best Scandinavian recipes

Ohh, the kladdkaka and apple cake look delicious!

And isn’t ‘Anchovy gratin’ just Janssons frestelse / Janssons temptation by any other name?


Scandinavian Kitchen

Craving kanelgifflar? Life lacking lingonberry cordial?

Scandi baking and treats image

You can buy most of your favourite Scandinavian foodstuffs from  http://www.scandikitchen.co.uk/ , which also has a cafe in London.

I am always tempted to put in an order for some Ahlgrens Bilar, Dumle and other godis. Luckily they do not sell skum kantarell otherwise I’d be setting up a subscription…

They also sell pearl sugar so you can make perfectly Scandi cinnamon buns of your own.

Sweden.se has a recipe here: http://sweden.se/culture/cinnamon-buns/

Have you been to the Scandinavian Kitchen? What Scandi foods do you wish were easier to find in the UK?