Kardemummabullar – Cardamom Rolls

Also available in cinnamon – kaneli, the cardamom roll is closely related to the cardamom bread we ate frequently as children in my family, which Kelly in particular loved. It’s a sweet bread with cardamom, nothing too complicated there. While related as well to the American cinnamon roll, the American versus the Swedish cinnamon bulle has 1) less sweet bread dough whereas the Swedish bread base is richer, like brioche 2) the Swedish roll has less sugar in the ‘smear’ between the layers of bread but more fat (butter) and 3) there’s no frosting on the Swedish rolls, although there is often a covering of pearled sugar, vanilla sugar, and/or ground cardamom. To summarize that: Swedish version has the sweetness in the bread, whereas the American version has sweetness in the coatings. The Swedish rolls, as a byproduct I believe of the enriched dough, tend to be more moist as well. Finally, I believe knotting style that is more common for the bread dough more directly exposes the sweet filling ‘smear’ layers to the first taste, enhancing the experience with less need for frosting.

*This is of course a massive generalization, not all bakeries are the same.

One thing that might put off some Americans is the pure amount of cardamom included. I’d reckon the Kardemummaknot (spelling close, not exact) I had in Uppsala recently had a good half teaspoon’s worth of cardamom on top of just the one medium-size roll, and a good bit in the bread and filling too. I loved it. I love cardamom. But I’ve run into plenty of Americans who have never even heard of the stuff. Heathens.

One other thing I’ve noticed is that all the cardamom rolls here in Sweden are roughly the same. The ‘garnish’ topping varies slightly. The dough may be a little better or worse. The mount of braiding is the knots will vary, and a few will be the simpler roll form. Really the only difference is price. Is it a trendy touristy place? $5. Is it a small local shop making money on other products? $1.50.

Some Recipes: https://miaohrn.wordpress.com/recept/ http://kokblog.johannak.com/3685/ https://thisweekfordinner.com/kardemummabullar-swedish-cardamom-buns/ https://lelasfood.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/cardamom-buns-kardemumma-bullar/ https://nadelundgabel.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/the-joy-of-fika-swedish-kardemummabullar/

I decided to make some here, because I had a bunch of ‘filmjolk’ I had bought accidentally and was too afraid to try on my museli, but it seemed appropriate for baking, like buttermilk. So that as milk. And I don’t really have proper measuring equipment here… However, the cardamom I bought at the grocery store seems more like Penzey’s grade cardamom, I suppose with higher demand comes higher quality? Everything is more expensive at the grocery stores here, and decently often the quality is better too.

It was hardly my best baking endeavor, but still tasty. The rolls go really well with tea.

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