Food Fridays : Semlor

Food Fridays : Semlor

By Bianca Aponte

Food Fridays : Semlor

Welcome to this week’s episode of Linnea Lund’s Food Fridays where every Friday we share one of our favorite Swedish dishes for you and your loved ones to try out at home. Every day should be a time for sharing and exchanging recipes and traditions with family, friends and colleagues. This is why we want to share a little of our Swedish culture with you!

   Today’s recipe is for the delicious Semlor. These cream filled buns are traditionally eaten in the time leading up to and during Lent. Usually these buns aren’t eaten outside this season so if you are in Paris and aren’t much of a baker we recommend that you stop by Cafe Suedois and try theirs instead! If you are not Paris based, do not worry! We have acquired the recipe for you so that you may still try these yourself at home. Bake a batch and share the sweetness with your friends and family!




▢ 25 g fresh yeast or 12g active dry yeast

▢ 80 g melted butter

▢ 250 ml whole milk

▢ 40 g caster sugar

▢ ½ tsp salt

▢ 1 tsp baking powder

▢ ½ egg, lightly beaten

▢ 2 tsp ground cardamom

▢ 300-400 g plain bread flour

▢ ½ egg for brushing


▢ 100 g marzipan

▢ a good dollop of crème pâtisserie or custard

▢  500 ml whipping cream

▢  1 tsp vanilla sugar or extract

▢ Icing sugar to dust




  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC
  2. Melt the butter and add lukewarm milk. Temperature should be around 37-38ºC. (If using a mixer, set it up with the dough hook attachment.)
  3. Add the fresh yeast and stir until dissolved. Add sugar and stir again. 
  4. Add half of the flour as well as the salt, baking powder and ground cardamom. 
  5. Add half of an egg and preserve the other half for brushing before baking.
  6. Mix well until all ingredients are incorporated and then start to add the rest of the flour, bit by bit, until you have a dough that is only a little bit sticky. Take care not to add too much flour: you will get dry buns. 
  7. Knead the dough for at least five minutes in the mixer, longer by hand. Leave to rise in a warm (not hot) place until doubled in size for 30-40 min.
  8. Turn the dough out to a floured surface. Knead again for a few minutes, adding more flour if needed. 
  9. Cut the dough into 12 equal sized balls ensuring that they completely round and uniform in size. 
  10. Place on a baking tray with good spacing between buns. Leave to rise for another 25-30 minutes.
  11. Gently brush each bun with the remainder of the egg wash and bake for about 8-10 minutes or until baked through – keep an eye on them as they can burn quickly.
  12.  Remove from the oven and cover the tray with a lightly damp tea towel immediately – this will prevent the buns from forming a crust.
  13. When the buns have cooled down completely, cut a ‘lid’ off the buns – about 1½ cm from the top. Scoop out about 1/3 of the inside of the bun and place crumbs in a separate bowl.


  1. Mix the almond paste with the dough crumbs until it forms a very sticky mass –add a dash of milk, custard or crème pâtisserie at this point to help it along. 
  2. Spoon the filling back into the buns, equally divided. 
  3. Whip the cream with the vanilla sugar until stiff and use a piping bag to pipe cream on all the buns’ tops. 
  4. Put the dough lids back on and dust with icing sugar.