Pulla (Finnish Sweet Bread) with Emilie

Pulla (Sweet Bread)

Emilie shares a recipe for traditional Finnish Pulla – a sweet bread filled with sugar and spice and everything nice!

Pour one cup of lukewarm milk into an empty bowl. Add 1/2 cup of sugar. Whisk together. Add one packet of yeast. Whisk together. Add one teaspoon of salt, one egg, and two teaspoons of the crushed cardamom. Whisk together well. Add two cups of flour and whisk together again. Add 1/2 stick of melted butter. Mix with a wooden spoon. Add two more cups of flour, and mix together with a wooden spoon. Add one more cup of flour and mix with your hands. Cover the bowl of dough with a cloth, and leave it to rise for about an hour in a warm place. Place the risen dough onto a baking sheet. Roll out the dough into a thin rectangle. With scissors, cut strips along the two outer sides. The slits should line up evenly but not meet in the middle. Put to the side and allow it to rise more.

To create the filling, mix together 2-3 tablespoons of softened butter, one teaspoon of crushed cardamom, one teaspoon of cinnamon, one teaspoon of brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves. Mix into a paste. Spread the paste evenly into the middle section of the dough, and “braid” the dough by folding alternating sides into the middle. This will seal the filling while the dough bakes. Crack an egg and lightly beat it. Use this as a light egg wash on the top section of the dough.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and let bake for 25 minutes.

Paired with a hot cup of coffee, fresh baked Pulla makes for a delicious breakfast treat. A shout out to the fine citizens of Oulu, Finland – Olipa hyvaa! :)