On the 13th of December, it is Lucia’s day in Sweden, an originally christian tradition (Lucia’s Saint), corresponding in the old Swedish calendar to the solstice celebration. In Sweden it is mainly a celebration of lights, with girls and boys dressed as Lucia’s and her “followers” with lot of candles and singing. It is a really nice tradition and I love Lucia’s concerts. But there is something about Lucia I love even more : the Lussekatter.
Originally made for Lucia’s day, this pastry can actually be found in Sweden during the whole month of December and sometimes even in November already. The Lussekatter – which could be badly translated by Lucia’s cats – are a safran bun in “S” or “cat tail” (the name comes from here) shapes with raisin.
They are just so good, and today I am sharing with you how to make your own Lussekatter.
In a pot melt 60g of butter with 150mL of milk and a pinch of salt.
When it is melted, check the that the temperature is around 35 degree – you can dip your little finger, if you feel neither cold or warm, then it is the right temperature :p.
Add then a pinch of safran (a big one in my case) and 25g of baker yeast. If the temperature is too warm, the yeast will die, if it is too cold, they won’t grow (Trust me I am a biologist :p).
When everything is mixed together, add 75g of sugar and 350g of flours. Knead the dough and let it rest 30 minutes.
Split the dough is small balls (20 to 25 balls) and let it rest 15 more minutes. Give the dough the shape you want (traditional S shape or anything you feel like it, free your imagination) and add the raisins (if you like raisins…) and let it rest 40 minutes.
“Paint” with an egg to obtain a nice golden color at the and end bake it 5 to 10 minutes at 250 degree (or less if you are paranoid like me). And have a look regularly !!!!
And now the most important part : enjoy it with awesome friends and a cup of warm Glögg (Swedish Christmas Wine).
Have a nice fika !
PS : Thanks to Nils for some of the pictures and thanks to all my co-bakers, my buddy group from 2015, my friends (2016) and my mother (2013) =).