Recently, I’ve been reading up about ‘lagom’. It’s something I want to be fairly knowledgable on considering it’s the motivation behind this blog. For those who don’t already know ‘lagom’ is a Swedish word that doesn’t really translate into English. It means something along the lines of “just the right amount”. It strikes to achieve a balance in our lives which ultimately makes us happy.
Since doing some reading I’ve discovered some things that I did already which apparently fit with the idea of ‘lagom’. My view of interior design is to paint three walls a neutral light colour like cream and then one wall a colour. Apparently this is something the Swedes do because you’ve got “just the right amount” of colour in the room. So, I’ve been practicing lagom before I even knew it existed. Gold star for me there.
The point of all this is that lagom is a huge part of the Swedish culture. So, when researching it you start to touch upon many other parts of it which I find insanely interesting. So then we come to ‘fika’.
“Fika is to Swedes what pubs are to the Brits and aperitivo is to Italians: a break from doing. At a time of constant social media notifications and 24/7 work emails, fika can be a way to pause, relax and reconnect – with yourself, your loved ones, colleagues or a book.”
Lagom: The Swedish Art of Balanced Living by Linnea Dunne (seriously give this book a read – it’s worth it).
‘Fika’ is essentially a coffee break. Again, it doesn’t really have a proper translation in English. You will have a drink, something sweet and probably socialise with somebody during ‘fika’. And with Swedes you’ll probably end up with some cinnamon buns hence the inspiration for this recipe. Cinnamon buns tend to remind me of autumn which is probably to do with the spice. I tend to find I consume more spice in the autumn/winter months. Therefore, I’ve paired these with maple syrup and pecans to give an extra autumn kick. Honestly, they are 100% worth making.
Makes approximately 12 buns
100g plain self raising flour
200g wholemeal flour
175ml oat milk
7g instant yeast
50g brown sugar
50ml rapeseed oil
Pinch of salt
3 tbsp cinnamon
3 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp oil
100g pecans, finely chopped
75g icing sugar
1 tbsp oat milk
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Heat the oat milk with the brown sugar until all the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is warm (but not too hot!). Pour in a jug and pour the yeast on top. Set aside for 15 minutes.
Combine the flours and salt in a bowl. Pour in the yeast mixture with the oil and bring together until a dough has formed. Lightly dust your work surface with flour and knead the dough for roughly 10 minutes. Cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm place for an hour or until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, combine the cinnamon, maple syrup, oil and pecans in a bowl. Cut the dough in half and roll out one of the halves until it’s about 50mm thick. Spread the cinnamon mixture over this half. Roll out the over half until it’s about the same size as the other one. Place this over the other half and lightly press together.
Cut the dough into 2cm strips lengthways. Take each strip, twist (see photo at top) and starting with one end twist into a rose shape. Tuck the remaining end underneath and press lightly to secure. Arrange these on a baking tray covered with greaseproof paper and leave in a warm place for another half an hour.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC (180ºC for fan ovens)/gas mark 6.
Place the buns in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Leave to cool. Meanwhile combine the icing sugar, milk and cinnamon to make the icing. Drizzle over the buns and then devour them all…