The Scandinavian Cookbook
by Trina Hahnemann
A treat for cold afternoons. If life were perfect, we would have more time to drink hot chocolate with our family and friends. One day, during a long and busy spell of hard work, I decided to arrive home early, bake buns, and make hot chocolate for my children as a surprise. It was an especially nasty day outside: snowing, cold, and windy. I got home, made everything ready, lit the candles, and sat down and waited ... and waited. Nobody came home that afternoon. They were all busy with their lives on the very day I had decided to do something different with mine. The buns and cocoa were reheated later that night and still tasted wonderful.
• 2 ounces fresh yeast
• 3 cups lukewarm milk
• 4 tablespoons butter, melted and left to cool a little
• 2 pounds all-purpose flour
• 2 tablespoons superfine sugar
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
• 1 egg, beaten
DISSOLVE THE YEAST IN THE LUKEWARM MILK in a mixing bowl, then add the melted butter. Sift the flour, sugar, salt, and cardamom together and stir the dry ingredients into the milk mixture. When a dough has formed that comes cleanly from the edges of the bowl, turn it out onto a floured counter and knead for 5 minutes.
RETURN THE DOUGH TO THE BOWL, cover with a dish towel, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour. Turn the dough out onto the counter and knead again. Shape into 28 small buns. Place them on two baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Cover with dish towels and let rise again for 20 minutes.
PREHEAT THE OVEN to 400°F. Lightly glaze each bun with beaten egg. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Make hot chocolate while the cardamom buns are in the oven. Serve the freshly baked buns with butter on the side.