Delicious Sourdough Finnish Pulla akka Finnish cardamom bread made with sourdough starter, butter, flour, sugar and with aromatic Cardamom.
This year for my Christmas Baking I choose Sourdough Finnish Pulla. Finnish pulla or nisu is a Cardamom bread typically served all year round as treat along with coffee or tea. Usually, this bread is made with commercial yeast however I decide to try with my sourdough starter. This cardamom scented brioche type bread with added sourdough starter has aromatic scent along with little tang of sourdough.
History of Finnish Pulla bread?
According to National Geographic’s Edible: an illustrated guide to the world’s food plants and other sources, cardamon is the third most expensive spice after saffron, certain vanilla beans, is a part of the ginger family. This aromatic spice is indigenous to South India, also in Sri Lanka, Bhutan, and Nepal as well, it was brought to Scandinavia by the Vikings, a thousand years ago, from their travels to Turkey. Cardamon appears in written Nordic cookbooks as early as 1300AD. There is another story that Dutch brought cardamon back to Scandinavia from their expeditions to south east Asia in the 16th century.
However, after introduction of cardamom by a British farmer during world war into Guatemala, they are highest producers of Cardamom in the world.
Cardamom is extensive and only spice used in Finnish pulla bread, occasionally during festivities they add saffron in the pulla too.
How to make Sourdough Finnish pulla bread?
You need Following ingredients to make this bread.
1) Flour: Just like any other brioche type bread you need to use all-purpose flour.
2) Sugar: This is slight sweet bread, so you need to use granulated sugar.
3) Leaven: I used all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour leaven with 100% 50: 50 All-purpose flour and whole wheat flour starter
5) Eggs: you need egg to added into the dough as well as for egg wash.
6) Butter: You can add melted butter or soften butter. I used to soften butter. One thing you need to remember while making Finnish Pulla bread is that you should add butter only after at least mixing of half of the flour.
7) Cardamom: Use cardamom pods rather than pre-grounded ones. Yes, cardamom pods require motor and pestle, or you can grind them with some sugar.
8) Vanilla extract: I have added to the pulla, but it is optional.
9) Salt: Since it is sweet bread you need to add only less salt.
10) Milk: I have used whole milk that is only liquid in the recipe.
10) Toppings: Slivered almonds and pearl sugar are used as topping, if you want you can add a glaze I did not add it.
How to make perfect sourdough Finnish pulla?
1) You should have active sourdough starter in hand. If you do not have it hand you can check here to make one.
2) Make a leaven around evening and night before going to bed make dough and let it ferment on the room temperature. If your kitchen is cold try to use proof function in the oven or a proofer for proper rise. Otherwise, it will not rise with top of refrigerator technique as this recipe has sugar.
3) This recipe makes only one loaf of Pulla. If you want, you can double or triple.
4) While making dough make sure that it should be soft and pliable as well as it can hold the shape, if it is too soft then you will not be able to braid them.
5) While making braids do not use any flour in the surface, use little oil it will be enough. You can also make pulla into rolls.
6) Second proof requires at least 2 hours or until the braid are puffed well otherwise you will get a flat bread.
You can use this same dough to make Finnish Butter Eye Buns voisilmäpulla you need to add butter cubes and sugar in the top. I will try to make it. You can also add raisins to the dough.
If you are glaze lover then try to add thin sugar glaze made with confectioners’ sugar, milk, and lemon zest.
If you tried this cardamom bread akka sourdough Finnish pulla, please tag me on Instagram @nidhinikhil or @zestysouthindiankitchen in Facebook.
Sourdough Finnish Pulla bread akka Finnish cardamom bread you can freeze them for later use.
BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the #BreadBakers home page. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. This month the Bread Bakers are making Tear & Share Holiday Breads, a theme chosen by Felice from All That’s Left Are The Crumbs.
I made this bread as part of bread baker’s event tear and share breads.
- Baklava Danish Tear and Share Treat Bread by A Messy Kitchen
- Buttery Soft Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls by Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Cheesy Chicken Chutney Pull Apart Skillet Rolls by Sneha’s Recipe
- Cheesy Tomato Tapenade Party Bread by Food Lust People Love
- Cranberry Cinnamon Star Bread by Making Miracles
- Fruit Mince Braided Star Bread by All That’s Left Are The Crumbs
- Gingerbread Spice Christmas Tree Bread by Passion Kneaded
- Herb and Cheese Star Bread by Ambrosia
- Koledna Pitka – Bulgarian Christmas Eve Bread by Magical Ingredients
- Sourdough Finnish Pulla Bread by Zesty South Indian Kitchen
- Pumpkin Spice Pull-Apart Loaf by Palatable Pastime
- Spiced Chrysanthemum Bread by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Turkey, Cranberry and Cheese Pull Apart Bread by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Sourdough Finnish Pulla Bread
- 25 g Active Sourdough starter
- 35 g bread flour
- 15 g whole wheat flour
- 50 g water
- 300 g All-purpose flour
- 1 egg
- 50 g sugar
- 100 g Leaven
- 95 g milk I used full fat milk
- 5 g salt
- 55 g butter
- ¾ teaspoon cardamom about 20 pods
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract ( optional )
- Mix bread flour, whole wheat flour, active starter and water and mix well. Set aside at room temperature for 5 hours.
- In a kitchen aid stand mixer add all the ingredients except the butter knead with dough hook to form a cohesive, sticky mass, 2 to 3 minutes on low speed of a stand mixer.
- Gradually add butter and incorporate about 1 minute on low speed.
- Once all the butter is incorporated, turn the mixer up one speed and
- Knead the dough until it is smooth and supple though still somewhat soft and tacky, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Cover the dough and let it rest in a warm (75°F) place for 8 to 12 hours. To develop strength in the dough, stretch and fold it in the bowl three to four times during the rest. This will increase the elasticity of the dough. You need to keep it in a proof as it has sugar in it
- Next morning once the dough is doubled in volume divide the dough into 3pieces of 213g.
- Shape it into elongate rope of 17 inch long, then braid the dough and set aside for proof about 2 hours until it looks puffy.
- When the braid is proofing preheat oven to 350°F/ 177°C. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- When you are ready to bake, make an egg wash with 1 tablespoon water and reserved egg earlier.
- Brush egg wash generously to the braid. And sprinkle pearl sugar and almond halves throughout the braid.
- Bake it in 350°F for 25- 30 minutes or until golden in color which registers 185F internal temperature.
- Enjoy, it is excellent coffee or tea bread.
This is Swathi ( Dr. Ambujom Saraswathy Ph.D) from Zesty South Indian Kitchen who loves to explore cuisines from all over the world. Whenever possible I try to to give an Indian touch to several of the world cuisine, and has weakness for freshly baked bread. All the recipes you see here are created by me and approved after taste-test by my family.