This is a very good cake typical of the Scandinavian area, but also Estonia and also some other countries. From all the recipes I saw, this seems to be more the Estonian version. But there are various versions, also with dried fruits or raisins for example.
It has a very old origin, dating back centuries when some monks introduced pretzels in northern Europe, then it developed into sweet recipes but keeping the crossed shape. In the origin it was more like a sweetbread, then some recipes got a bit richer, but it’s still not a heavy cake, and for breakfast is really perfect. It has a very beautiful shape, outside it’s a little bit crunchy but inside is soft, because of the milk in the dough. And the cinnamon aroma it’s always very inviting.
For this recipe I added an extra touch: one day earlier I made the butter very soft at room temperature, than I added a mixture of untreated orange peel and candied orange peels (cut into small pieces), than I mixed together well and reshaped it into a butter shape. It gives an amazing extra flavor to the cake!
INGREDIENTS (for a 24-26cm shape):
- 500 g flour
- 200 ml milk, warm
- 2 yolks
- 60 g butter
- 60 g honey (I used chestnut honey)
- 12 g yeast
- 8 g salt
For the filling:
- 120 g butter
- 120 g sugar (I used muscovado sugar)
- a small teaspoon of cinnamon
- First of all let’s prepare the dough. Sift the flour, than in a big glass mix together the warm milk, the yeast, the yolks and the honey.
- Take 350 grams of flour and add the liquid mixture and start to work it. Then add gradually the remaining 150 grams of flour, the soft butter and the salt. If needed add some little more milk, keep working until you obtain a homogeneous and smooth dough, I let the machine work for 6-7 minutes.
- Then place the dough in a bowl, cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and let it rest for about 3 hours, until it doubles.
- During this time prepare the cream, whisking the soft butter with the sugar and the cinnamon. Let the machine go until it gets very creamy and lighter in color.
- After the 3 hours flatten the dough into a rectangular shape, of about 4-5 mm thick.
- Take a spatula and spread the cream all over the dough surface.
- Roll it, and then cut it in half on its length.
- Take the 2 halves and cross them on each other, then close it into a ring shape and place it in the oven shape, previously greased with some butter. Spread also the remaining cream on the top, cover with a clean towel and let it rest for other 2 and half/3 hours.
- After this time bake at 170 °C fan-assisted mode for the first 10-15 minutes, and then at 180 °C static mode for other 25 minutes (so about 35 minutes all together, but it could vary from oven to oven).
- Enjoy 🙂 with tea is perfect!
Products used in this recipe:
Flour: 400 g organic stone ground “Farina Buratto Tipo 2”, from “Mulino Marino” and 100 g Manitoba flour from “Mulino Marino”