Tuesday, December 18, 2012

TWD: Finnish Pulla Bread

I was really looking forward to making this beautiful braided bread!   It's Scandinavian heritage reminds me of my own Norwegian family, and the recipe is familiar.

Cardamom, almonds, and pearl sugar all remind me of the other Norwegian breads I've made.  My mom's recipe for crepe-like pancakes, as well as her recipe for Skillingsbolle, are both spiced with cardamom.  The scent and flavor instantly remind me of her!

The dough for this beautiful bread is remarkably easy to made and handle.  Milk is scalded and cooled slightly, then added to a butter-and-egg-rich batter of all purpose flour, yeast, a little sugar, and cardamom.   Additional flour is added to made a beautiful dough.   (The recipe calls for cardamom pods, when you remove and crush the seeds.  I had ground cardamom on hand, so I used that instead.)

The dough was slow to rise the first time in my cool kitchen.  However, it was a dream to handle, forming a long braid and twisted into a wreath.

After the second rise, I still had hope for a successful yeast bread!

The braid is brush with an egg wash, then sprinkled with sliced almonds and pearl sugar.

After baking, the bread has risen even more, resulting in a gorgeous golden bread!  It's BIG, about 18 inches in diameter.  Perfect for a crowd on Christmas morning!

Sliced, the bread is lightly sweet, soft on the inside, and slightly crunchy on the outside from the sugar and nuts.   Perfect with a smear of butter and a cup of coffee.

Today's Tuesdays With Dorie host is Erin of The Daily Morsel.  Please visit her blog for the complete recipe, and also for some beautiful photos that will guide you step-by-step in making this Finnish Pulla.   Enjoy!


  1. I love the smell of something baking that is near and dear. For me, that scent is bread made with lemon rind and cinnamon--a very typical Italian combination. This is definitely perfect with coffee.

    1. Many of my wonderful childhood memories come attached with certain scents! :)

  2. Your braid is just perfect! It's so nice when food reminds us of family and traditions.

  3. Your wreath looks wonderful! Love the idea of cardamom crepes! Yum!

  4. Simply gorgeous, Dawn! How lovely this recipe reminded you of your family and heritage! I love that about food!

  5. Great job with the braiding. wow! Your pulla looks wonderful. It really is a great recipe. I hope to make it again and again.

  6. Your pulla is beautiful and your braiding divine! Thanks for the lovely post.

  7. Your pulla looks fabulous. Lovely images too.

  8. Beautiful braid! We loved this too. ~Happy Holidays!

  9. Now that I have tried cardamon in bread, I am so tempted to try your Skillingsbolle recipe. I am trying to figure out how to make it for breakfast and not wake up super early. Have you ever let it rise the first time in the refrigerator overnight?