On Saturday, December 13th, it is Lucia day, a day of light.
Read the story about Saint Lucia here.
Ayoe’s friend Marie, from Sweden, taught her how to properly celebrate Lucia day.
The day before we bake Lucia buns, like these:
Then in the morning of the 13th, we wake up super early, make tea, heat the Lucia buns in the oven and snuggle up on the couch and watch Swedish television where they send live from a church in Sweden with the Lucia choir.
You can watch this broadcast here.
They spiced it up with a bit of rap accompanying some of the songs, which was quite interesting.
Here is also a short video of the Lucia choir walking into the church.
So now we wake up early on December 13th, not because we have to in order to see the Lucia choir but because it is a tradition now, we snuggle up with tea and warm Lucia buns on the couch and listen to the beautiful choir singing Lucia songs.
For us a day like this, where we celebrate light, is amazing in the dark mornings of December (at least on the Northern hemisphere) because it brings people together and creates a oneness where we can just be, enjoy each others company and metaphorically see the light in each other in the darkness of the outside world. This light will lead us together and stay strong in tough times. The light is life, and it is beautiful!
If you would like to make your own Lucia buns, here is the recipe:
50 g fresh yeast or 3 ½ teaspoon dry yeast
3 dl milk (1 ¼ cup)
1 dl buttermilk (1/2 cup)
1 dl brown sugar (1/2 cup)
2 teaspoons salt
100 g butter (1/2 cup)
½-1 g saffron
600-700 g flour (5 cups)
Raisins or cranberries
Melt butter and add half or more of the milk to get a lukewarm temperature (same temperature as your pinky finger). Pour it over the yeast and mix till dissolved.
Add remaining milk and buttermilk. Mix in egg, sugar salt and saffron. You can use a mixing machine or mix by hand with a wooden ladle.
Add flour a ½ -1 cup at the time. Stop when the dough is slightly wet but firm. The dough should be soft and look a little shiny.
Let rise till double size preferably in a warm place (in front of the fire place!).
Roll out dough in small long sausage looking pieces. Then curl ends towards the middle from both sides, so you end up with an “S” looking bun. The longer you roll the dough, the more spiraling you can create in your “S”.
You can make several different shapes.
Let rise for 1 hour in a warm place.
Turn oven to 210 C or 410 F.
Place a raisin or cranberry in the middle of each twirl (two or more per bun, depending on the shape) and brush with beaten egg to make the buns golden.
Bake in oven for 8-15 min or until golden. The time depends on your oven, so keep an eye on them, you don’t want black buns. Don’t bake too much since this will make the buns hard instead of moist and soft.
To test if the buns are baked enough, simply take one out of the oven on gently “knock” on the bottom of the bun with your finger. If it sounds hollow, it is done!
Serves warm with a cup of tea or gløgg (Glühwein).