Today is Fat Tuesday, or as we also call it in Sweden, Semledagen (Semla Day). Semla is a delicious pastry made out of a cardamom bun, filled with almond paste and whipped cream. It's so popular, I would call it more of a semla season rather than day. My dad would start baking these at least a week ahead, and we would have them every night for fika until we ran out. And then he'd make some more.
Now, there're semlas and there are semlas. This recipe knocks it out of the park with its home made vanilla and cardamom custard almond paste. Making your own almond paste is super easy, fun, and it tastes better than the store-bought version.
The mommies from the playground put together a Valentine's Day party for the kids today, so the boys and I brought these heart shaped semlas as a treat. Sharing is encouraged with these, because it's easy to have one, and then another...
from Roy Fares
200 g of milk
260 g flour
30 g yeast
Warm the milk to lukewarm. Then mix it with the flour and yeast and run it in a kitchenaid with a hook until it form a dough, let rest for about 15 minutes.
160 g wheat flour
55 g egg (1st)
2 g salt
5 g ground cardamom
100 g butter - room temperature
85 g granulated sugar
Mix in the remaining ingredients on low speed then a little faster in about 7-10 minutes, until the dough is shiny and elastic. Divide the dough in 14 equal pieces about 60 g / pc. Round the buns with your hands and place on baking sheet with parchment paper. Let rise under a cloth to double size of about 1.30 to 2 hours. Bake in the oven at 210 degrees and bake for about 8 - 10 minutes, until the bun got a nice golden brown color.
200 g almonds - blanched
200 g caster sugar
possibly some water
Boil some water and pour over the almonds and let them soak for 15 minutes or overnight. Pour the almonds through a sieve and let drain. Add almonds and granulated sugar in a food processor and blend until the almonds begin to feel smooth and delicate, perhaps you may need to add some water if it feels dry. Knead the almond paste and wrap in plastic, store in the fridge.
400 g almond paste (the one you made above)
5 g ground cardamom
70 g of egg yolk (5)
90 g granulated sugar
30 g corn starch
1 vanilla pod
250 g of milk
15 g butter - unsalted
Mix the cardamom, egg yolks, sugar and corn starch in a bowl. Split the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape out the seeds and add them in a saucepan with the milk. Boil, stirring, and then pick up the pod. Pour the hot milk mixture into the bowl with the egg yolks and mix well. Pour everything back into the saucepan and heat over medium heat and constant stirring until it becomes a thick fine vanilla cream. Pour the cream into a bowl, add the butter and mix. Cover with plastic and let cool in the refrigerator at least 2 hours. Then mix little by little of the custard with the almond paste to a smooth and delicate cream.
1 l cream - whipped (should be on the semla)
1. Cut into the bun with scissors a triangular top
2. Fill the hole with cream
3. Pipe on some cream
4. Put on the top and dust some icing sugar