March 8, 2011
Traditionally in Finland, Shrove Tuesday or “Laskiainen” (in Finnish) is the day kids go out to play with their pulk (pulkka, similar to a sled) downhill. Going to slide on the hill is what they call “pulkkamäki”.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t go pulkkamäki this year because my Pikkusiili is still sick. A huge disappointment for my other daughter, Luonnonvoima.
To make the day less boring, I offered her some Laskiaispulla and hot chocolate ^__^.
Laskiaispulla is a sweet cardamon-spiced bun served (and baked) on Shrove Tuesday. It is filled with strawberry jam (or raspberry) and whipped cream. Another version, common in Sweden, has almond paste inside instead of jam.
It serves the original purpose of Shrove Tuesday, the last festive day to eat “heavy” and prepare for Lent. Besides laskiaispulla, pea soup (hernekeitto) is often eaten too.
Laskiaispulla – Shrove Tuesday sweet buns
one recipe of traditional pulla (cardamon-spiced bun), strawberry jam and whipped cream
yields 20 small buns
adapted from here
- 2,5 dl milk
- 1 dl sugar (85g)
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 packet dry yeast
- about 7 dl special baking flour (I used erikoisvehnäjauho) – 1dl = 65g flour
- 100 g unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
Warm up the milk to 42 °C (to activate the dry yeast), mix sugar, salt and cardamom.
Lightly beat the egg and divide it in two portions (save the other to wash the buns before baking). Add one portion to the milk mixture, beating carefully.
Mix the dry yeast to part of the flour (about 1-2 dl ) and start pouring to the liquids, whisking to incorporate.
Add slowly the remaining flour (more or less, depending on the dough consistency. Too much flour and the buns will be hard). At last, add the melted butter.
Knead until dough is uniform, smooth and soft.
Place the dough in a large bowl and cover with a damp teacloth. Leave in a warm spot for about 40 minutes until the dough has doubled its size.
When raised enough, remove the dough from the bowl, knead it on a flour-dusted surface, “punching it down” (removes the gas formed during the fermentation). Divide the dough into 20 equal pieces.
Roll the pieces to form balls and place them on baking sheets (I use parchment paper). Let the little buns rise again covered in a warm place for 30 minutes.
Heat oven to 225 °C ( I bake in 220°C)
Brush the buns with egg and sprinkle sugar flakes on top (optional).
Bake in center of oven for 10-15 minutes (till golden brown), remove and let cool on a rack.
To assemble the Laskiaispulla:
Cut the tops of the buns (a “lid”) and using a spoon scoop a bit from inside the bun. Fill the cavity with a spoonful of jam, the crumbs and top with the whipped cream. Close with the “lid”. Dust with icing sugar if desired.
Serve with coffee or hot chocolate ^_^.
This picture is from last year´s Shrove Tuesday. It was taken in a playground nearby and what you see in the middle (kids surrounding it) is called “napakelkka“. Napakelkka is some sort of merry-go-round with a box (or sled) connected to a log of wood that slides in circles when you push it. I am not sure, but it also belongs to the tradition of the Laskiainen.
September 5, 2010
I like to bake. I like to do many things. Sometimes I just don’t have time. And.. sometimes I just don’t have patience ;)
That wasn’t the case on last friday. I baked an Apple pie to be served with a big ball of vanilla ice-cream. We had special guests and I wanted to offer a dessert.
To be honest, I cheated a bit. I used a jar of my homemade apple preserve for the filling to hurry up things. My homemade preserve was made from apples I’ve got last year from my husband’s aunt (she has lots of apple trees on her garden! Lucky lady. ) A simple preserve: apples, lemon juice, sugar and a vanilla pod.
I only needed to make the crust. Butter, flour, bread flour and water. You can’t go wrong when you add butter! :D
Pastry adapted from here, the Finnish ingredients I used in parentheses.
Yield a ∅ 27 cm pie. Serves 8.
- 150 g cold unsalted butter chopped
- 140 g flour ( erikoisvehnäjauhoa: special wheat flour )
- 50 g bread flour ( hiivaleipäjauhoa: dark wheat flour)
- 5-6 tablespoons iced water (more or less depending on the dough consistency )
For the filling, about 250 g of apple preserve (my jar was 500 ml capacity)
In a bowl, rub together the butter and the flours with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Slowly add the cold water to the breadcrumb mixture a little at a time, mixing well, until the dough forms. You don’t need to knead it much and it is perfectly fine if you can still see dots of butter here and there. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 min – 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 175 °C.
Roll out about half of the dough in between two sheets of parchment paper (or on floured surface) until 2-3 mm thick. Using your pie dish as a guide, cut a circle of the dough and line the dish. Pour the apple filling in.
Make strips from the remaining dough and arrange them in criss-cross pattern over the filling. Crimp the edges to “seal”, otherwise the strips can shrink during baking.
(You can brush the surface with egg wash but I didn’t.)
Bake for 25-30 min or until golden.
Best served warm with vanilla ice-cream or whipped cream.