The Breakfast Club, Elevenses, Munchies, Nordic Love
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Norwegian Cardamom Buns


© Tor Guttormsen

The scene outside the passenger window takes my breath away. The fjord sparkles under the midnight sun, and mountains rise up in rocky walls, with glacier melt cascading down in shiny rivulets. I lean in to the curve as the car sweeps around yet another peninsula, heading back towards the mainland. A cluster of houses populate the shore here, and I wonder what it’s like to live here, to have to plan for groceries. Yes, this is what comes to mind: if I lived here I would need a huge trailer to haul groceries once a month! Would the magical location make it worth it? Perhaps. Time for a snack.


Sometimes the simplest things in life are some of the best. Road trips are one of our favorite pastimes when we visit Norway. There’s this cardamom raisin bun that you can find in grocery stores and gas stations; it’s pretty common. And in most places, it’s just a regular bun, but for some reason, the ones from the gas station are so delicious.


2 1/2 teaspoons yeast
730g white flour (5 cups)
110g sugar (1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons ground cardamom
1 teaspoon salt
225g butter (1 cup), cut into pieces
350 ml milk (1 1/2 cup)
1 egg
1 cup raisins
1 additional egg, for egg wash

Tip: The egg wash is optional. They’re actually more like the Norwegian buns without it, but much prettier with it!


Put all ingredients except the last two in your bread machine in the order specified by the manufacturer. Set to raisin dough setting. Add raisins at specified time (If your machine doesn’t have a raisin dough setting, add the raisins during the resting time between kneading cycles).

Line tray with baking paper. Remove dough and shape into buns; use about a handful of dough per bun. Poke in any protruding raisins and pinch dough to seal them in. Rest and let rise for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 180C/350F.

After buns have risen, poke in any raisins that have popped out, gently pinching dough over them. Beat remaining egg and stir in a teaspoon of water; brush each bun with egg wash. Bake for 18-22 minutes, until golden brown.

If you don’t have a bread machine, check out the original recipe from Epicurious for directions. I haven’t tried these directions with my ingredient changes, so you may want to opt for the original if you want a sure thing.

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