Swedish saffron buns recipe for for St. Lucia

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Swedish saffron buns: the recipe you need to know if you want to celebrate like a Swedish.

St. Lucia’s Day is more than just a celebration in Sweden: it’s a tradition people respect doing everything to make it surprising. Food is a big part of the celebration and the saffron buns are probably the most representative items you can bake for this occasion. They’re called lussekatter and the difference between the ones you can usually buy at the shops and these ones are in the shape.

St. Lucia’s Day is celebrated by a girl dressing in a white dress with a red sash round her waist and a crown of candles on her head; the crown is made of Lingonberry which symbolizes new life in winter.

The recipe is very simple but the shape can be complicated so if you want you can simply give them the shape of a bun and the result is the same!

Ingredients for 25 Swedish saffron buns

    • 750 grams of flour
    • 1 gram of saffron
    • 50 grams of fresh yeast
    • 200 grams of sugar
    • 300 ml of whole milk
    • 1 egg
    • 200 grams of butter
    • 1 teaspoon salt

For the decoration

  • 50 grains of raisins
  • 1 egg


  1. Melt the butter into a high-bottomed saucepan then add milk and saffron and put to boil. Remove the mixture from heat and pour the yeast inside.
  2. Add all the other ingredients and knead until you get a smooth and sticky enough dough. Let it rise for 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 25 pieces and give each of them the shape of an S or an 8 (or simply a bun!) and position at either end of the S a grain of raisins. Allow to stand for another 90 minutes at room temperature.
  4. Preheat oven to maximum then bring it to 220° and cook the rolls for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush with beaten egg. Let cool then serve.

Preparation time: 3 hours

Foto by Cecilia Larsson @sweden.se

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Categories: Christmas recipes, International Recipes, Recipes, Seasonal recipes, Sweets & Cakes
Article written by Veruska Anconitano aka La Cuochina Sopraffina
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