Saffron-flavoured buns, for St Lucia’s Day, are a December tradition in Norway and Sweden. This saffron cake with pears is a twist on that
100ml whole milk
0.5g ground saffron
2 large or 3 small pears
A little lemon juice
325g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
300g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1⁄2 tsp salt
50g Greek yoghurt
Icing sugar, for dusting
1 Preheat oven to 180C/Fan 160C/350F. Grease a 25cm Bundt or ring pan and dust with breadcrumbs, tipping out the excess.
2 Melt butter and add milk and ground saffron. Stir and set aside to infuse.
3 Peel and core pears and cut into bite-sized chunks. Add lemon juice, stir and set aside.
4 In a mixing bowl, beat sugar, eggs and vanilla extract until thick, light and fluffy using a balloon or hand-held electric whisk. Mix the remaining dry ingredients and sift into the egg mixture. Fold in until incorporated.
5 Add the yoghurt and saffron-milk mixture and fold gently until completely combined. Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan. Add pear pieces – they’ll sink during baking.
6 Bake for 30–35 mins until a skewer comes out clean. Cool before turning out. Dust with icing sugar and serve with whipped cream.
Recipe from Scandikitchen: Fika & Hygge by Bronté Aurell (Ryland Peters & Small).
Turn to page 59 of December's The Simple Things for more Christmas Cake in the house, including:
Cinnamon Danish pastry swirls
Cranberry, sherry and vine fruit cake