St. Lucy's Day Saffron Buns

I heard about these buns from Sweden in a post on an online retreat that I'm taking this Advent.  The recipe is from Saveur, but I noticed a direction or two missing and put in my own solution.

2 1/4 oz. packages dry yeast
2 cups milk, room temperature
1-2 t saffron
3/4 cup plus 1 tsp. sugar
6 1/2 cup all- purpose flour
3/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs
12 T unsalted butter, melted
oil spray
2 raisins per bun


Mix together the yeast, milk, saffron, and 1 t. sugar.  Let sit about 10 minutes, until it foams.  Stir in the rest of the sugar, the flour (a cup at a time), the salt, 2 eggs, and melted butter.  I used the paddle attachment on my stand mixer until it got too thick, then switched to the dough hook.  Knead with the dough hook for 8 minutes.  Put dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray and cover with plastic wrap.  Allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size.

Take small pieces of dough and form into ropes of about 8 inches with your hands.  The original recipe specifies 32 buns, but I ended up with less than that.   Take each rope and form it into an "s" shape with tightly spiraled ends.  Place on parchment paper lined baking sheets about 2 inches apart, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rise about 30 minutes more.  Preheat  oven to 400F.

Remove plastic wrap, and brush each roll with the last egg mixed with 1 T water.  Place a raisin in the center of the spirals on either side of each roll.  Bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 16- 20 minutes.  Allow to cool on a wire rack.


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