Auntie Gunnvor’s Skillingsboller (Almond Buns)
Sweet Paul’s great-aunt was quite a character. She was also an amazing baker and taught me many of her baking secrets. She says these buns helped her find a husband. I’m not sure if Uncle Gunnar was drawn to Auntie because of her buns, but I know this: They sure are tasty. Her secret was adding grated marzipan. When it melts into the dough, it’s just . . . well, try them yourself and see!
Makes 12 buns
for the Buns
2 3⁄4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading and rolling the dough
1⁄4 cup granulated sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 cup whole milk, warmed
5 tablespoons cold butter, grated
Vegetable oil for bowl
for the Filling
6 tablespoons (3⁄4 stick) butter, softened
1⁄4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1½ cups (10 ounces) grated marzipan
1 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1 large egg, beaten with
1 tablespoon water
1. To make the buns: In a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or in a large bowl with a wooden spoon, combine the flour, sugar, salt, egg, yeast, and milk and mix well until the dough comes together.
2. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes in the mixer or turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for 15 minutes by hand. If it feels too sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
3. If necessary, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Add the grated butter, little by little, kneading it into the dough until it is all incorporated and the dough is smooth and elastic.
4. Place the dough in a large oiled bowl, cover with a towel, and place in a warm spot. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
5. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out with a rolling pin into a 12-x-16-inch rectangle.
6. To make the filling: Spread the dough with the butter. Sprinkle the sugar, cinnamon, marzipan, and almonds evenly over the butter.
7. Roll the dough up along the long side into a log and cut it into 12 equal pieces.
8. Place the pieces on a baking sheet about 1⁄2 inch apart, cover with parchment paper, and let rise in a warm spot for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
9. About 20 minutes before you plan to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F, with a rack in the middle position.
10. Brush the rolls with the egg wash and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
11. Cool on a wire rack and serve.
Text: Excerpted from SWEET PAUL EAT AND MAKE, © 2014 by Paul Lowe Einlyng. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. Photos: © Alexandra Grablewski.
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