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colombian cardamom

Pulla Cardamom Bread

Cardamom (Recipe: Finnish pulla bread)


This recipe, and the beautiful loaf of pulla, was given to me by Patti Folsom, assistant librarian at the Harmony Library in our town. Patti got the recipe from the late Mim Pellinen, who was an integral member of the Finnish American Heritage Society in Canterbury, CT, and the bread machine adaptation from Mary Ellen Harmon. Now, if you can’t trust a librarian to find a great recipe, who can you trust? Makes 2 loaves.


2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup milk
1 stick butter, minus one tablespoon
1 heaping tsp ground cardamom (more or less, to taste)
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups flour (preferably King Arthur)
2 tsp yeast (not rapid-rise type)


Beat eggs with sugar. In a small saucepan (or in the microwave), warm the milk, and melt the butter in the warm milk. Add cardamom, vanilla and salt. Mix above ingredients until well blended and pour liquids in bottom of the bread machine pan. (Note: Follow your individual bread machine instructions as to adding ingredients. But do not mix salt with yeast. Salt will negate the action of the yeast.)

Add the flour, make a small dent in flour and place yeast in dent. Set machine on dough setting.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

When cycle is finished, remove dough and cut into two pieces. Cut each of the two pieces into three pieces for braids. Braid dough and shape. Let rise until about double.

Mary Ellen’s note: I brush on Eggbeaters and sprinkle with coarse sugar. (My note: make an egg wash by beating one egg with one teaspoon of water. Brush on, then sprinkle with sugar.)

Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until bread has risen and the loaves are golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

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