Sunday morning buns

Demonstrating the different types of swirling…

Sundays are made for lazing, particularly at this time of year. It’s something about the crisp autumn air and the light – which is still bright but not too piercing. You can open the curtains, forage for coffee then drowsily wallow in the fresh sheets (if you don’t change your sheets every Saturday you’re a fucking savage, sorrynotsorry) and generally be very slothful while putting off the inevitable Sunday night prep for the horrors of the week to come.

The pinnacle of Sunday morning treats is breakfast in bed. For this, I have a few rules suggestions:

  1. No full English. Or Scottish. Or Irish. Or anything too wet, basically. The whole point of brekkie in bed is reclining in bed like a roman hedonist, and wrangling a knife and fork while trying not to spill your beans isn’t really that sexy. Plus, the prep time on FEB is frankly a faff. You want something you can prod a bit while you do the posh coffee in the mokapot.
  2. No muesli. You’re meant to be treating yourself. No punishment oats.
  3. No smoothie bowls. Get tae fuck you bloody hipster.
  4. Beware the eggs Benny. On paper it’s a good idea. And if you’ve got one of those hospital trays or you’re in a hotel or whatever then knock yourself out. But it can be a faff to prep, and you’ll actually have to prop yourself up in bed and wake up – and if you’re not paying attention to your brekkie it will cause a spilly.
  5. Consider things which you can nibble easily with a fork but are a nice treat – warm buns, hot crumpets, French toast, pancakes or a bacon sarnie. What all of these thing have in common is that they don’t take you out into the kitchen for too long, because let’s face it, half the fun of brekkie in bed is sharing it with someone else!

For my perfect Sunday morning in bed, I find a bit of prep time is the way forward. And nobody does baked goods quite like those sneaky scandifolk! I’m slightly obsessed with Scandinavian baking, particularly the emphasis on sweet spices and enriched dough.

Now tell me that isn’t the breakfast food of dreams

These classic cardamom-scented buns are super-quick and easy to make, needing nothing more than a bit of resting in the fridge overnight to get the most out of them. Gloriously, the colder the dough is when you get it out of the fridge, the better it rolls. All it then needs is a bit of resting while you make coffee and prep a cute lil’ brekky tray, then you whack it in the oven while you wake up your breakfast buddy and get them a hot cup o’ Joe. Et voila – freshly baked buns in bed. Don’t eat them all at once!

The pearled sugar is the quintessential Scandinavian style topping, and something which totally makes it an authentic bun!

Scandibuns – makes 12 large buns


250 ml whole milk

50g butter

200g white spelt flour

300g strong white flour

75g caster sugar

1.5 tsp ground cardamom*

7g fast-action dried yeast

1 tsp salt

1 egg, beaten


Spiced butter filling and decoration: 

75g grams unsalted butter, softened

70g light brown muscovado sugar

2 tsp ground cardamom**

0.5 tsp cinnamon

a couple of grates of black pepper (seriously, it’s essential to getting that lovely spicy taste)

1 egg (to glaze)

Nibbed or pearled sugar (available online at the Scandikitchen)


  1. Scald the milk (i.e. bring it to the boil and then take it off the heat to cool – it ensures a nice soft dough), dropping the butter in once it’s off the heat to melt in. Set aside and make sure it’s warm to the touch, not hot.
  2. Sift the flour, then place with the cardamom, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Stir together well to distribute, then mix in the dried yeast. Make a well, then add the egg and the milky buttery mixture. I should say again – THE MILK MUST BE WARM NOT HOT. If it’s hot, guess what? You kill the yeast and you make weapons, not breakfast. Stir well to bring together into a soft dough.
  3. Cover and place in the fridge overnight to rise slowly.
  4. Take the butter ingredients and blend together, then put in the fridge to rest alongside the dough.
  5. In the morning, first preheat the oven to 180C and prep two trays with greaseproof paper, then take out the butter to soften a bit. Then take out the Dough and turn out onto a floured surface. Roll out nice and thinly (a few mm thick) to a rectangle about 30x 50cm – the fact it’s cool will mean it’s less inclined to stick.
  6. Mix the butter a bit (if it’s still solid, 10 sec in the microwave will sort it), then spread over HALF the dough, nearly to the edge. Fold over the dough like a giant sandwich and seal the edges, then roll out again, not too thin.
  7. You should have a sort of rectangle sandwiching the spicy butter filling. Cut into 12 strips. You now have two choices. Either roll up like a spiral for a classic snail, or take your strips, twist and then knot into a cute little bun shape.
  8. Leave on the side for around 10 minutes to rise while you make coffee.
  9. Before baking, brush with an egg wash and sprinkle with pearled sugar for a CLASSIC finish.
  10. Bake for around 15-20min until risen and golden-brown. Move to a rack to cool a bit – or, if you’re serving in bed, take a couple straight to the bedroom!

Try to leave for 2 minutes for the flavours to mellow before you greedily devour. They’re delicious dipped in coffee!

Please note essential Moomin mug

*seriously, do yourself a favour and buy it ready-ground

**I’m not kidding. Buy the damn stuff ready-ground

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s