Finnish Cardamom Bread (Pulla)
This delicious recipe was given to me by a dear, departed
friend many years ago.
I have not made it too often, but my visiting daughter
loves this recipe and requested that it be made during her stay.
I thought you might enjoy it, too!
It is perfect with a cup of tea or hot chocolate.
1 quart milk
2 sticks (1 cup) butter (real butter!)
1 teaspoon crushed cardamom
(I could not find whole cardamom to crush so I substituted 1 tsp. ground cardamom)
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons salt
3 pkgs. dry yeast (I use bulk yeast so...6 1/2 teaspoons?)
1/2 cup warm water
14/15 cups flour
Heat milk, butter and cardamom to just boiling. Cool to lukewarm.
Mix eggs, sugar & salt in separate bowl; set aside.
Combine yeast and warm water to a smooth paste.
After milk has cooled, add egg mixture.
Add 10 cups of the flour to make a thick batter.
Add yeast and continue to add more flour, mixing well.
Knead on a lightly floured surface about 10 minutes.
Place in a lightly greased bowl (butter or coconut oil).
Turn to grease top of dough.
Cover and let rise till double in bulk in a warm place.
Punch down to rise again.
Turn out on lightly floured board.
Cut into 5 even pieces (recipe makes 5 loaves ~ great for freezing or gift giving.)
From each piece, cut and shape 3 stripes approx. 16" long
by rolling dough between palm and board.
Braid, pinching ends together and tucking under.
Place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Let rise until puffy but not doubled in size.
Brush with beaten egg; sprinkle with sugar and sliced almonds.
Bake 350* 25-30 minutes
Cool on wire rack.
Makes 5 braided loaves.