Settling down with a nice hot mug of coffee or tea and one of these warm cardamom buns (kardemummabullar) will be your favorite part of enjoying yourself this autumn season. This delicious Swedish breakfast treat is a national favorite for a reason.
A few years ago, everyone was going crazy over European ideas of slowing and enjoying things in life via fika (a Swedish coffee break) and hygge (a Danish concept of coziness). Everywhere you could find articles on learning how to slow down and take steps to make your life more cozy and and relaxed.
Who can blame them? America tends to move at a faster pace, where the smaller things are often looked over or forgotten altogether. Anything we can do to take a step back is not only needed, but welcomed.
One of my favorite things to become somewhat popularized a little bit in that time were cardamom buns (also known as kardemummabullar). During my travels while living in Europe, I discovered this little Swedish shop in the outskirts of Chiswick that sold the most amazing cardamom buns.
What is Bullar? What is Kardemummabullar?
Bullar is the Swedish word for buns. Specifically, it is used as a term for yeast bread-based buns. With it comes another term, vetebullar, which means wheat buns. Bullar has two popular variations: kanelbullar aka cinnamon buns and kardemummabullar aka cardamom buns.
Kardemummabullar is perhaps the most popular of the bun types. It is served either like a traditional roll or in a fancy twist. They're usually served in paper liners topped with pearl sugar. Cardamom buns are so popular, that Sweden has an entire day dedicated to their deliciousness. It's October 4th, if you want to save this recipe to bake with me then!
What does Cardamom Taste Like?
It is hard to fully describe the flavor of cardamom. They almost taste a little bit like what pine smells like, but with a light mint undertone. There are notes of eucalyptus and it's also a bit peppery. It has strong herbal qualities, but there is a definite sweetness to the overall taste. Although cardamom can be quite potent in both smell and taste, it shines as a delicious unique flavor that works well with the heartiness and sweetness of the buns.
How to Shape Cardamom Buns
You can shape your cardamom buns just like you would a cinnamon roll if you like. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. All you need to do is roll out the dough, spread the filling, roll it like a lot, and cut slices. Easy peasy. We can do that in our sleep.
If you want to make these beautifully twisted cardamom buns, it does take a little more preparation and a couple of attempts to get down a process. Don't stress out about being perfect. No matter what shape you make these cardamom buns, they will be delicious. I do wish I took more photos of twisting the buns, but I will probably make a video showing you how. Or at the least, a handy gif.
Roll out the dough and spread the filing to the edges. You don't need to worry about leaving a border. Fold the top third over the filling, then fold the bottom third over the top fold - just like how you fold a letter. The long side should be facing you Cut the dough into 15 - 18 strips.
Grab a strip and gently stretch it slightly. Twist the strip to make nice spirals. Wrap the strip around two of your fingers, then push the ends of the strip through the hole. Gently place on your parchment-lined baking sheet.
Tips for Making Cardamom Buns
- I know some people are nervous making a yeast bread recipe, but it isn't that bad. Just make sure you use fresh yeast.
- Please take your time and read through the recipe entirely at least twice before you start anything.
- Measure out all your ingredients before hand. Getting everything in place and measured out helps make the process easier and a lot less overwhelming.
- Use fresh ground cardamom. You should be able to smell it very well when you open the bottle. You can try grinding your own cardamom seeds if you are really adventurous.
- Feel free to add in a bit more cinnamon in the recipe, or if you don't like cardamom, you can replace it entirely with cinnamon - don't worry, I won't tell anyone!