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Saffron cats - Swedish lussekatter

Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time9 mins
Total Time1 hr 39 mins
Course: buns, Dessert, sweet buns
Cuisine: Swedish
Keyword: st lucia
Servings: 24 buns
Author: Caroline Vass


  • 50 gr fresh yeast
  • 5 dl milk of your choice
  • 175 gr butter softened
  • 0,5 gr saffron
  • 2 dl sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 13-14 dl wheat flour
  • 60 raisins or whatever you want to decorate with
  • 1 egg yolk to brush


  • Crumble the yeast and add the milk. Stir until resolved.
  • In a mortar pestle saffron, sugar and salt. Add it to the yeast and milk mixture.
  • Cut the soft butter into smaller cubes and add into the batter.
  • Finally, sift the flour and add it little at a time (1 dl) until the dough is soft and shiny.
  • Place a clean tea towel over the bowl and let it rest for 1 hour.
  • Set the oven to 180C/fan.
  • Put flour on the counter/table where you will be baking and place the dough on top of it.
  • Make into a roll and using a dough scraper cut into about 24 equally big pieces.
  • Roll each lump of dough into a straight line and then form into an S shape. Like you would write an S in handwriting.
  • Whisk an egg yolk and brush the saffron cats.
  • Either place one raisin in the middle of each side or use pearl sugar or poppy seeds to decorate with.
  • Bake in the middle of the oven for about 9 minutes. Until golden.


For the dough to rise and be of good quality, all the ingredients have to be at room temperature. 
The dough should be a bit sticky. It's better to add a little more flour once it has rested, if the dough is difficult to work with.
Originally Swedes use raisins to decorate the saffron cats. I, personally dont't like raisins. Therefore I have used poppy seeds, sugar or even white chocolate.