Here is our take on jg's mother's recipe for Lucia Cats (sweet saffron buns traditionally served in Sweden on St. Lucia Day)

I made these Lucia Cats after seeing jg's blog entry in December 2005

festive rolls - Lucia Cats (7 Jan 2006)
Click on image to see more pictures

to blog from OUR kitchen - Lucia Cats

Many thanks to jg's mother for sharing her recipe. Here is my rendition of it:

Please look at the 2007 revision

Lucia Cats - Sweet Saffron Buns

50 g fresh yeast
200 g butter
500 ml milk
1 - 2 g saffron
½ tsp salt
150ml sugar
1 egg
900g unbleached all-purpose flour
cream or milk
1. Crumble yeast into a large bowl.
2. Melt butter. Add milk and let it go lukewarm (do baby bottle test on wrist). Pour the mix over the yeast and stir to dissolve the yeast.
3. Put saffron and a bit of the sugar into a mortar and use the pestle to grind it finely.
4. Add salt, sugar, saffron, most of the egg. Stir. Then mix in almost all of the flour.
5. Knead the dough until smooth and shiny (about 10 minutes). Add a little more flour if the dough is sticky.
6. Put in a clean bowl, cover and let rise in a warm part of the kitchne to double (approx 40 min).
7. After it has doubled, put dough on floury surface and knead a couple of times.
8. Divide into 12 and form into ropes. Make Lucia cats or other shapes.
9. Place on parchment covered baking sheet. Cover with a damp cloth, let rise in a warm part of the kitchen to double (20-40min)
10. Preheat oven to 400F. Just before putting them in the oven, brush the tops of the shaped buns with reserved egg and cream. (Optionally decorate with raisins, pearl sugar or chopped almonds.)
11. Bake buns on upper shelf (to prevent burning on bottom) at 375-400F for approx 10 - 15 min til hollow sounding on bottom.

some photos of the procedure

There are several traditional shapes but I chose to make what seemed to be the simplest, what turns out to be the "Julgalt", (I thought the shape was a "Luciakatt"....)

Lucia shapes

to recipes from OUR kitchen - Lucia Cats
to recipes from OUR kitchen - index

to blog from OUR kitchen - Lucia Cats - really late or really early?

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License