Korvapuusti is a Finnish word for “sausage” that is made of pork, lard, and breadcrumbs. It’s traditionally eaten during the Christmas season in Finland where it’s served with mashed potatoes or rice.
Korvapuusti is a traditional Finnish dish. It consists of bread dough that has been rolled into balls, dipped in an egg wash and then fried in butter or oil.
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These buns, which are ubiquitous across Finland and often eaten as a snack with a glass of cold milk, are literally translated as “slapped ears” – some say because of their slightly squished shape, and others because children who tried to steal them hot from the oven were told their ears would be slapped.
Note: To give time for the dough to rise, start this recipe many hours before you intend to dine, or even the day before.
Methods Explained in Detail
Step No 1
Begin by preparing the dough. If using entire cardamom pods, crush them with the flat of a broad knife, then peel and discard the skins before putting the seeds in a spice grinder or pestle and mortar. Toss into a food mixer or a large mixing bowl after grinding to a powder. If you’re using ground cardamom, toss it right into the food processor or bowl.
Step No 2
Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, or by hand with a wooden spoon if preparing by hand. Because the dough is extremely moist, I would not recommend trying the following step by hand, so combine all of the dry ingredients in the bowl of a food mixer and add the milk, eggs, and butter. Mix on low speed until everything is incorporated. Increase the speed to medium and knead for 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Step No 3
Scrape the dough into a wide, clean basin that has been lightly greased with soft butter. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, approximately 3 hours at room temperature or overnight in the fridge; I like a gradual overnight rise so they’re ready for breakfast the next day. To make the filling, cream together the butter, sugar, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl until a smooth, soft paste forms. Remove from the equation.
Step No 4
Cut the dough in half on a lightly floured work surface. Each piece should be rolled out into a big rectangle measuring 50 x 30cm and 5mm thick. Spread the spiced butter thinly and evenly over the two sheets of dough, then wrap them up tightly to create a long sausage shape. Slicing across each length on the diagonal, first one way, then the other, creates triangles (you should get about 26). The triangle’s apex should be approximately 2cm broad, and the base should be about 6–7cm. Then, with a triangle in front of you, push your finger firmly along the center from tip to base, from tip to base. Flatten the top and push out each end to expose the spiced butter spirals. Rep with the remaining triangles. Arrange them on 2 or 3 baking trays, evenly spaced, and allow to prove for another 30 minutes.
Step No 5
Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C Fan/Gas Mark 7 (200°C/200°C Fan/Gas Mark 7). Brush the surface of each bun with a little beaten egg and sprinkle with pearl sugar just before baking (or granulated sugar). You may freeze them now by freezing them on the baking trays, then packing them into a bag or container and storing them in the freezer until ready to use.
Step No 6
Preheat the oven to 350°F and bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. If you’re cooking them from frozen, add a couple of minutes to the cooking time. Warm the dish before serving.
The saimaa life korvapuusti is a Finnish dish that’s made from pork, potatoes and onions. It has a very unique taste and can be served as an appetizer or main course.
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