luciaboller (that's the danish version of it)
25 g yeast
4 dl warm milk
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. saffron
1 tsp. ground cardamon
1/3 C sugar
2 and a half C white flour (preferably organic)
100 g melted butter
1 egg, beaten, to brush on before baking.
mix the yeast and milk together while you grind the saffron with a spoon of sugar in a pestle and mortar, add the cardamon to the saffron mixture. add the remainder of the sugar to the milk and yeast mixture, then add the spices and begin to slowly add the flour. mix in the melted butter (taking care not to add it while it's too hot or you'll kill the yeast. the dough should be a bit sticky, so take care not to add too much flour.
allow it to rise for several hours in a warm place or overnight in a cooler place. form into rather pagan curly swirls, allow them to rise, brush them with the beaten egg and bake at 180°C/375°F for 20 or so minutes (my oven may be a bit fast, but let them get browned and lovely). serve them with a pot of fresh tea.
makes 18-24 buns (depending on how creative you get with your shapes/how much you let your 9-year-old help).
happy st. lucia day!