Prepare for a delightfully cozy and exceptional experience! Embrace the essence of Finnish tradition and savor the authentic Finnish Christmas with this Traditional Finnish Christmas Bread Spice Mix.
What’s even better is that you can incorporate this spice blend into any bread that aligns with your dietary preferences, be it PSMF bread, keto bread, or another variety.
What is this Unique Seasoning About?
As Christmas approaches, Finnish grocery stores and bakeries become infused with a captivating medley of warm spices. As you stroll past the bread section, you’re enveloped in the irresistible aroma of sweet Christmas Bread, delicately spiced with a blend of bitter orange, fennel, anise, and caraway. It’s the skillful fusion of these spices that yields the authentic flavor and fragrance, where the individual notes give way to a harmonious aromatic symphony.
While the traditional bread is crafted from wheat and is rich in brown syrup or molasses, this distinctive aroma and taste can be replicated using this low-carb spice mix, enhanced by a touch of instant coffee to evoke the toasty essence released by brown syrup.
The History of the Finnish Christmas Bread
Even though Finnish Christmas Bread is so established part of the Finnish Christmas tradition, there is only a little information available on the bread and the unique spice combo.
In any case, the tradition of Finnish Christmas Bread, known as “joululimppu,” dates back centuries and is deeply rooted in Finnish Christmas customs.
Actually, the history of joululimppu is intertwined with Finnish folklore and our country’s agricultural heritage. The tradition of baking Christmas Bread can be traced back to pre-Christian times when the winter solstice was celebrated with special breads and pastries. Over time, as Christianity spread in Finland, the tradition of baking special bread for Christmas became associated with the Christian holiday.
Joululimppu’s significance in our Christmas traditions lies in its role as a symbol of abundance, warmth, and togetherness. The bread’s rich and fragrant flavors evoke the festive spirit of the season, and its preparation and sharing bring families and communities together.
The use of spices like bitter orange, anise seeds, and fennel seeds in the seasoning of joululimppu reflects the influence of historical trade routes and cultural exchanges, as well as the availability of local ingredients. These spices add depth and complexity to the bread’s flavor profile, contributing to its distinctiveness as a traditional Finnish Christmas delicacy.
Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Make This Traditional Seasoning Mix
Making this seasoning is super easy – although it needs a bit of physical labor – so let’s take a closer look at how to make this unique spice blend:
First, you’ll need a mortar and pestle; that’s where the magic happens.
Then, you’ll add the spices one by one, that is, 2 tablespoons bitter orange peel…
…1 tablespoon (organic) caraway seeds…
…1 tablespoon (organic) anise seeds…
…1 tablespoon (organic) fennel seeds…
…and finally, 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules or powder for the toasted smell and taste.
…into fine powder. Smells so lovely!
Use in your bread creations. Usually, 1 bread requires 1 tablespoon of Christmas Bread Spice. In addition, you can add some sweetener as the traditional bread is sweet. I add about 1/4 cup (60 ml) powdered erythritol. Allulose works wonders, too, it’s a wonderful natural sweetener for keto baking.
How I Came Up with This Spice Mix Recipe
A few years back, during my tenure at Ketokamu, my former company, we curated an Advent Calendar for our social media platforms. We shared tips for healthy living, and I developed numerous recipes, predominantly keto versions of traditional Finnish Christmas dishes.
I aimed to delight our followers with the Finnish Christmas Bread recipe, given its status as one of the most cherished Christmas delicacies. Our followers were unable to indulge in the conventional wheat and sugar-laden Christmas Bread available in stores.
By leveraging the versatile Ketokamu baking mix and devising this distinctive spice blend, I concocted a delectable recipe that garnered rave reviews from our followers, swiftly becoming a beloved Christmas staple for many.
Overcoming the challenge of achieving the toasted aroma and flavor of brown syrup was no small feat. However, I soon discovered that instant coffee proved to be the perfect solution.
The process of grinding the spices proved to be quite labor-intensive. Consequently, this year, I had the brainwave to create a product — Christmas Bread Spice Mix — that I now sell in my Finnish online store — and naturally, I have an easy recipe for a gluten-free, nut-free, and keto Christmas Bread recipe using the spice mix. I personally grind the spices for my product to ensure their freshness, resulting in an exquisite taste and aroma!
However, I encourage you to try this recipe as it doesn’t take much time, and you’ll be rewarded with fragrant and tasty bread.
Here’s the recipe for you to enjoy:
- 2 tablespoons bitter orange peel
- 1 tablespoon (organic) caraway seeds
- 1 tablespoon (organic) anise seeds
- 1 tablespoon (organic) fennel seeds
- 1 teaspoon (organic) instant coffee granules or powder
- Place all ingredients in a mortar. Grind until fine powder.
- Use in baking; usually, 1 bread requires 1 tablespoon of Christmas Bread Spice Mix. Feel free to add sweetener to your liking, as the traditional Finnish Christmas Bread is sweet.
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Low Sugar, So Simple: 100 Delicious Low-Sugar, Low-Carb, Gluten-Free Recipes for Eating Clean and Living Healthy
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Anthony's Organic Instant Coffee,14oz, Ultra Fine Microground, Gluten Free, Arabica, Non GMO
Frontier Herb Fennel Seed Certified Organic, 16 OZ
Anise Seeds Organic - Perfect for baking or deserts - Pimpinella Anisum - Anise Seeds For Baking Organic Aniseed Seeds Anis Seeds Anise Seed Baking Organic Baking
Starwest Botanicals Organic Caraway Seed 1 Lbs
Bitter Orange Peels Zest - Dried, Cut & Natural Citrus Aurantium Peel - Net Weight: 2oz / 57g
Don’t forget to check my other traditional — and ketoized — Finnish recipes!
Further Ideas on How to Use the Christmas Bread Spice Mix
Since I aim to maintain the strict traditional integrity of this recipe, I won’t be providing any variations. Nevertheless, you can explore creative applications of the Finnish Christmas Bread Spice Mix to elevate the flavor of keto-friendly dishes. Here are some innovative ideas (which are sure to raise eyebrows among many Finns!):
1. Christmas Bread Spice-infused Cheese Crisps: Mix some Finnish Christmas Bread Spice Mix into shredded cheese, then bake to create flavorful and crispy keto-friendly cheese crisps.
2. Spiced Nuts and Seeds: Toss a mixture of nuts and seeds with the Christmas Bread Spice Mix, then roast them for a savory and aromatic keto-friendly snack.
3. Keto Spiced Roast Chicken: Rub a whole batch of the seasoning blend and some sea salt under the skin and over the surface of a whole chicken before roasting to infuse it with warm, aromatic flavors while keeping the dish low in carbohydrates.
4. Spicy Cauliflower Rice: Stir some seasoning into cauliflower rice for a flavorful and fragrant keto-friendly side dish that pairs well with a variety of main courses. Feel free to add a dash of coconut milk for a creamy consistency that lifts the dish to a completely new level.
5. Keto Spiced Avocado Dip: Blend the spice mix with ripe avocados, sour cream, and lime juice to create a delicious and aromatic keto-friendly dip for vegetables or low-carb crackers. Season with salt to taste.
6. Keto Spiced Zucchini Noodles: Toss zucchini noodles with the seasoning blend and extra-virgin olive oil for a flavorful and low-carb alternative to traditional pasta dishes.
These ideas will allow you to enjoy the aromatic and rich flavors of Finnish Christmas Bread Spice Mix while maintaining a low-carb lifestyle.
This week was incredibly captivating and rewarding. I spent Monday to Friday at the Food ingredients Europe expo in Frankfurt, where I encountered a multitude of captivating exhibitors from around the globe.
I collected so many brochures and samples that I had to purchase an additional piece of luggage to accommodate them all!
Armed with a wealth of new contacts and several product ideas, I’m eager to continue refining and expanding the product portfolio I develop and offer. Undoubtedly, the expo was the best event I have ever attended!