Here in Norway there aren’t really that many who fast any more. But next week begins the lent period, or the Easter fast for Catholics and many other denominations of Christianity. Since Norway is a primarily Christian country, and traditionally has a state church much like England did, we have quite a few old traditions which are tied to traditional Christian beliefs.
Most people know of Fat Tuesday and Mardi Gras of Carnival. That is the celebration before starting lent or the fast. During the fast it is forbidden to have any kind of party and to eat sweets, fatty, or baked delicacies. Among other things in norway eggs and sugar were forbidden in the fast. So the origin of Fastlavensboller is to use up the sugar, white flour, eggs and cream in the house.
Today the tradition of fasting is mostly died out in Norway, however the traditional cream filled sweet buns have not. My son reminded me yesterday that it was Fastelaven Sunday today and we had to remember the Fastelavensboller.
So if you would like to try and make them yourself, they are not that hard. If you can bake bread or rolls you can bake “boller”! Even when Kyle was small he could bake them…just look how good he was!
Otherwise we could not resist the snow today, so Renny and I had to dig out our ancient skis and test the snow if only for a short trip. It was actually perfect snow for me because you see I am really not that found of going downhill fast hehehe. Right now the snow was so deep that it gave enough resistance so my skis didn’t take off any faster then I wanted them to, so I was really quite pleased with myself. That was of course until I took my skis off and had to crawl literally out of the snow because it was well up to my hips and walking for me was quite impossible!! That is the real secret behind the invention of skis I think…it allowed people to walk on the snow and get around much much easier!! We did take some pictures. So you will have to be patient until Renny puts them up sometime in the near future.
Recipie for Fastelavensboller
250 g butter
1 l milk
2 eggs (can be omitted)
2 1 / 2 dl sugar
100 g yeast
3 tsp cardamom
1 / 4 teaspoon salt approximately
2100 g (2.1 kg) flour
Melt butter, add milk and warm to lukewarm / finger warm. Stir in yeast into some of the liquid and eggs in the rest of the liquid. Blend in the dry ingredients in the baking bowl (hold back some of the flour) and add all the liquid while the mixer or food processer runs. Add the rest of the flour to make desired consistency and knead the dough in the machine in 8-10 min, until it is smooth. Cover the baking bowl and put to rest in a warm place for 30-40 min.
Take the dough on the floured table, divide into two parts and then again into smaller pieces. Roll into balls and place on baking papir on a cookie sheet, cover and let them raise 40-50 min more. Bake on middle of the oven at 230 o C for 8-10 min. For a glossier result coat the boller with whipped egg before baking.
Let them cool, and cut in half. Fill with fresh whipped cream flavored with vanilla and decorate with powdered sugar if desired.
Good luck, let me know if you try them!