These whole grain Swedish tea cakes, known as “tekakor” ” in Sweden, are perfect for breakfast, lunch, or as a snack. They are delicious warm with a little butter and cheese, jam, or avocado.
This month’s recipe redux theme was a really fun one: to share one of our earliest cooking recollections and the recipe.
Growing up, I didn’t help my mom with much cooking. (I wish I had!) But I did help her bake. And my mom baked a lot. From Swedish cardamom rolls, to almond cookies, to gingersnaps, to crumble pies, to bread. I always loved baking and started playing around with making my own creations in Elementary school (not understanding that I needed a recipe and just mixing a variety of ingredients together and baking them! Ha!).
My mom said the first bread I made as a child were these Swedish Tea Cakes, known as “tekakor” in Swedish. (Even though they are definitely not cakes!)
A Beginner’s Bread
This is probably the first bread a lot of Swedish kids make. As far as bread goes, it’s a simple recipe and the individual rolls are great for little hands to knead, flatten, prick, and, eventually, eat! My 8-year old actually made these this summer with my mom and loved them. He was so excited that I was making them for this blog post. (I guess I don’t bake them very often–but it may be time to change that!)
Notes and Suggestions
Here are some notes on how I made them:
- I made them the traditional way, except I used white whole wheat flour in place of the all-purpose white flour. This worked great!
- The next time I make them I think I will try switching out some of the flour for spelt or rye. I may also use half white flour; I think it’s just one of those recipes that may need a little all-purpose flour love!
- These tea cakes can be made dairy-free by using non-dairy milk and olive oil instead of milk and butter.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup milk
- 1 packet active dry yeast (1/4 oz)
- ½ tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 + ¼ cup white whole wheat flour (or half white, half whole wheat)
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and then add milk. Heat until a thermometer reads 120-130 degrees F. Stir in honey.
- In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of flour, salt, and yeast. Pour over the milk and butter mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until it sticks together and pulls away from sides of the bowl.
- Cover with a tea towel and let sit at room temperature in a non-drafty spot for 30-60 minutes.
- Spread some of the remaining flour onto a clean work surface. Tip the dough onto this area and knead a few times. Divide into 8 even pieces. Form each one into a ball and then flatten with a rolling pin or your hands.
- Transfer the flattened rolls onto 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper or reusable silicone baking mats. Prick each one with a fork several times.
- Cover with a tea towel and let rise for another 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Bake for 9-11 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.
Same as the above, except use 1¾ cups milk and ¼ cup water.
Dissolve yeast in ¼ cup water that is 110-120 degrees F. Add the honey and stir. Let sit for 5-10 minutes then add warmed milk (or water), melted butter (or oil), and salt. Add this to the flour mixture and stir to combine.
Don't use liquids hotter than 140 as this will kill the yeast.