culinary review

Semla – Almond and Cream Wheat Bun Pastry

Last Modified: 01/30/08
First Published: 01/30/08
Views: 3006
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Views: 3006

Semla is a traditional Scandinavian pastry treat that’s available in the bakeries from January toSwedish Semla Pastry Easter. It consists of a light wheat bun, flavored with cardamom which has its top cut off and its insides scooped out and mixed with almond paste. The mixture is then put back inside the bun, and it is filled with whipped cream and dusted with powder sugar. Traditionally it was served in a bowl of warm milk, and some people still enjoy it that way, however more commonly the semla is served plain along with coffee.

Making a semla isn’t difficult. The wheat buns are easy and relatively fast to make. You also need almond paste, which you can either purchase in a specialty store or make on your own.

The semla is best enjoyed the same day it is assembled. If you bake a lot of semla buns, we recommend you assemble as many as you plan to eat that day. Store the semlas in the fridge.
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General Info
Servings: 16
Total Cost: $7.21
Cost Per Serving: $0.45
Total Calories: 5,608
Calories/Serving: 350
Semla Wheat Buns (16 buns) * 800.00 Grams $2.18 2,384
Almond Paste * 280.00 Grams $2.47 1,286
Milk, Whole 4 Tablespoons 60.00 Grams $0.06 38
Heavy Whipping Cream 36% 2 Cups 480.00 Grams $2.25 1,600
Sugar, Powdered Unsifted (for the cream) 1/2 Cup 60.00 Grams $0.20 240
Sugar, Powdered Unsifted (for dusting) 2 Tablespoons 15.00 Grams $0.05 60

16 semlassemla wheat buns

16 semla wheat buns
280 grams almond paste
4 tablespoons milk
2 cups heavy cream
½ cup powder sugar, for the cream
2 tablespoons powder, sugar dusting


Cut off the tops of the semla buns (save the tops). With a small spoon, scoop the inside of the bun out, leaving the edges and the bottom intact. Mix the bread insides with the almond paste and the milk. Evenly divide the mixture back into the buns.

Whip the cream with ½ cup powder sugar until stiff peaks are formed. Divide the cream on top of each bun. Place the cut-off tops back on the buns and dust them with powder sugar.

almond paste and breadcream semla