March 3, 2014


Tomorrow is the big day.
The day to eat semlor.
I've already eaten three (ok, four) this year but haven't made my own until yesterday.
I've made them before,  and I don't want to bad mouth one of my own recipes, but honestly these are just so much better. They are hands down, the best semlor I've ever made. I must say I was almost surpised when I took the first bite. A light and fluffy sweet wheat bun with lots of cardamom, filled with homemade almond paste, topped with sweetened whipped cream and powdered sugar.
I've been working a lot with yeasted dough recently and I must say I've learned so much since making them last year.

I usually get my semlor from a near-by bakery called Feldt's. They make the best sourdough bread, cinnamon rolls and semlor. They make the almond paste filling with crunchy bits of almonds (I think) and I was a little obsessed with that filling after tasting it that I had to try and recreate it. I must say my efforts paid off. If you prefer a smooth filling, just leave out those extra 25 grams of almonds.

Though I must say my video from last year is pretty sweet:

Makes 8-9 

Bun recipe adapted from Heléne Johansson's book ”Sötebröd från Brunkebergs bageri”. I halved the original recipe since I thought 8-9 semlor was more than enough. These should be served the same day they are made or they will become quite dry. You can also freeze the buns as soon as they have cooled and fill them later on. It's also ok to use ready made almond paste but I really recommend making your own.

For the dough:
25 g fresh yeast
1/2 cup cold milk
2 1/3 cups (325 g) all purpose flour
1 medium egg
3 tbsp + 1 tsp (50 g) granulated sugar
1/2 tbsp baking powder
2 tsp cardamom seeds
1/2 tsp salt
100 g (1 scant stick of butter) soft butter, cut in pieces

Egg wash
1 egg + 1 tbsp water

100 g blanched almonds (or 100 g almond flour)
6 1/2 tbsp (100 g) granulated sugar
2-3 tbsp water
1/2 tsp cardamom seeds
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
splash of unwhipped cream, as desired
25 g blanched, finely chopped and toasted almonds (toast chopped almonds in 175°C (350°F) hot oven for 5 minutes)
1 3/4 cups whipping cream
1/2 - 1 tbsp powdered sugar, to taste
pinch of vanilla powder or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Extra powdered sugar

Make the dough:
1. Grind cardamom seeds using a pestle and mortar.
Crumble yeast into the  bowl of a stand mixer. Add cold milk and stir until yeast is completely dissolved. Add all other ingredients for dough except the butter. Work the dough using the dough hook for about 5 minutes, then add the butter a few pieces at a time.

2. Work the dough for another 10-15 minutes or until it is very soft and elastic. The dough should not stick to the bowl at this point and you shouldn't need any extra flour for kneading.
Let the dough rest for 10 minutes in the bowl.

3. Form balls of dough, about 70-80 grams for each bun. Using your palm, press each ball of dough against the table and roll in circles until the bun is smooth and shiny (imagine almost massaging it!). Cup you hand around the bun without too much pressure and swirl it around in a circling motion to shape it into a round ball. 

4. Carefully transfer balls to a baking sheet covered with baking paper (remember to leave some space between buns). Cover with a cloth and leave to rise for at least 1 hour (preferably 1 1/2 hour).

5. Heat oven to 225°C (430F). Stir together the egg and water in a small bowl. Lightly brush buns with egg wash.
6. Bake buns for about 10-13 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack.

For almond filling:
1. Mix 100 g blanched almonds with granulated sugar, preferably in a food processor. Add as much water as needed to form a paste. 

2. Grind cardamom seeds with a pestle and mortar and add ground seeds to the almond paste. Add vanilla and 25 g finely chopped toasted almonds. 

3. Cut the "lids" of the buns, and make a small well in the middle. Save the crumb from the buns and add to the almond paste. Add a splash of unwhipped cream to desired consistency. Fill the holes in the buns with the almond filling.

4. Whip the cream with some powdered sugar and vanilla. Pipe or spoon cream on top of the bun, then put the "lid" on top. Powder with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.
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  1. Just perfect. I adore your pics.

  2. It looks fantastic! Can't wait for to try these myself :)


    1. Thank you Sam :-) Let me know if you do!

  3. Oh my goodness, those pictures slay me. I can imagine how incredible the cardamom and almond taste in those fluffy, creamy buns. Yummm....

    1. Thank you! I'm sure you'd enjoy them :-)

  4. Who is copying who?? (the first photo)

    1. Well, "anonymous", obviously Ditte posted it first and I had never even seen her post so I'm pretty sure neither of us is copying the other. There is really nothing "unique" about this idea, and I've used it in different ways before (dark background, powdered sugar etc.).

    2. I agree, just because you happen to use powdered sugar the same way in one photo that doesn't mean you're copying, you just both have a great eye for what looks pretty (and btw your photo looks absolutely stunning!).

      Keep it up!

  5. You're the best!!!! I looove the video!

    1. You're too kind :-) Thank you! xo Linda

  6. Ohh wow these look wonderful! Perfect in every way!

  7. I've never had Semlor before!!
    AND you have the most gorgeous photos. Love them. You're amazing.
    Sharing on my FB page!

  8. I silently ooohh and ahhhh over your pictures every time you post. These look stunning (as usual)!

  9. So gorgeous, I've never tasted Semlor but these look irresistible!

  10. Love your style, your blog has a soul! :)

  11. Please feel free to ship some of these my way, eheheheh, they look amazing!!!

  12. I love the book from Heléne Johansson! However, I haven't managed to bake anything from it yet. Your photography is, once more, absolutely stunning. I think I've said it before but that dark blue hue...oh my. I could look at these pictures for hours. Happy Shrove Tuesday, Linda!


  13. Härliga och fina bilder :) Ha en trevlig dag :)

  14. So, so lovely! Thank you for sharing, Linda!

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  16. Georgeous photos! I can't wait to try these by myself Just to double check as step: I noticed this time that you don't leave the dough to rise before you make the "balls" as in your previous recipe. Am I right?
    Thanks in advance and keep on the nice posts!

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  18. Linda, yesterday I've made your cinnamon buns and they were amazing! that dough is pretty awesome! Of course my knots weren't perfect, but I was pretty happy with the end result (you can check some pics on my IG @maricotabakes). I'm totally making semlor this weekend, but I'm thinking of making it with an almond praline crème diplomate instead of the almond paste + whipping cream. I love your work!

  19. Can I just say that these look totally delicious and not to mention beautiful! That one photo of the icing sugar falling down is just fantastic!

  20. I love your blog. It is fantastic. Greetings from Spain.

  21. Kommentera vad mitt nästa inlägg ska handla om :)

  22. Delicious! Tested by seven people and the verdict is... Pure heaven. I was a little bit afraid of the dough beacause I've never made yeasted dough this way but it came out perfectly and handling with it was a pleasure.

  23. I just recently tried these buns in Sweden and I am in love with them. I should probably try baking them myself :)

  24. I just absolutely love everything about your blog. Your photos are amazing, your recipes look extremely delicious.. WAUW. I love it when you have a new post so I can be amazed again. And, I love to read your Swedish Blog. It helps me with learning Swedish. Thank you Linda.

  25. I love when you're making beautiful videos! :) Those look delicious...

  26. cześć! super blog :))
    Zaczynam blogować, było by miło jakbyś wpadła! Pozdrawiam :)))

  27. Definitely giving this a go. Looks so yummy and absolutely beautiful. Thanks.

  28. That simply looks as if heaven has just materialized.

  29. These sound amazing! I'm definitely going to have to convince someone I know to make these for me ;)

  30. your photos such such a unique quality to them! (something with the light?) do you use effects or photoshop or something like that?

  31. These look delicious!! x

  32. I've never heard of this before, and now I feel like I'm missing out on life! Thanks for sharing this, I am going to attempt them. Great video by the way!


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