One of my favorite things in the world is problem solving and finding a solution. Give me an overhand knot and I’ll untangle it. Tell me something is impossible, I’ll find a way. Show me a problem, yo, I'll solve it.
Because in my world, there ain’t no problems, just solutions not yet found.
And that is exactly what a vegan semla (aka shrove bun, a traditional sweet bun filled with whipped cream and almond paste or raspberry jam and consumed for example in Finland, Sweden and in Estonia at Shrove Tuesday / Pancake day.) without gluten, dairy, yeast and refined sugar appeared at first.
Sure, I had made gluten free and yeast free semlas many times before, but they always included eggs. With eggs it is easy. With eggs everything is easy. And then, on the other hand all the vegan semla recipes they include usually white flour and yeast. With white flour and yeast it is easy. Even a baby can do it.
But to make a vegan semla, that has a nice and soft texture, that doesn’t crumble, that has a heavenly taste and none of those belly swelling ingredients – THAT was a tricky equation. That was something I just had to get involved.
So I made my math and baked the first batch. Disaster. The taste was good but the texture was horrible. Let’s modify the recipe and make another batch. Buns come out all flat. Ok, the third version usually always works. Not this time. The taste is great, the texture is better, but buns remain raw on the inside no matter how long I bake them. And finally when they are done, they look horrendous.
At this time a normal person would just say, oh well, let’s just eat pancakes then!
But a maniac like me – is just getting started.
So I roll my sleeves, take a deep breath and go to the mattresses.
I twist the recipe here and there, pour a little bit more of this and less of that. Change the baking temperature and add a new ingredient. In my head the buns should come out brilliant, but you can’t never be certain when it comes to baking. There is always a bit of magic involved, and a lot of chemical reactions happening that are hard to predict. But with high hopes I send my buns to the oven. And with a growing excitement I take them out, split them and fill them. …And with happy tears in my eyes I finally eat them.
I’m in love with these semlas. My family is in love with them too. Please do try them also. With the vanilla flavored coconut whipped cream and super easy homemade almond paste. They just belong together. This equation equals love.
Pst, Check out also my other shrove bun inspired recipes: