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I have been threatening to do this for years!  It’s about time that a boller is invented to embrace the dark season.  Today was the first time this season that the sun couldn’t make it over the horizon at midday.  The dark season has officially started!

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We have boller everywhere: for the return for the sun, solboller; and the solskinnsboller, the sunshine bun; the midnight sun boller, midnattsolboller; boller for skole, skolebrød; the Bergensboller named after the city Bergen; skillingsboller, or ‘penny bun’, better known as the Cinnamon bun in English; everyday boller – plain, raisins or chocolate; gas station boller normally featuring one of the commercial chocolate bars such as smørbukk (caramel covered in chocolate); Lussekatter, borrowed from the Swedes to celebrate Lucia Day; kanelknuter, or cinnamon nuts, which is a cinnamon dough rolled long and twisted into a round weave; fastelavensboller with cream and powdered sugar for Lent; and then the local’s have invented their own family versions, like Victoria’s, Birgit’s, Emma’s and Jørgen’s.

There is already a ‘dark season boller’ called mørketidsboller, however, it is actually not a bolle, it is a custard filled donut with chocolate icing on top that the shops have made to push sales.  Ours is home-made with real boller dough!

So today, to celebrate the first day of the dark season in Alta, we have made our own ‘mørketidsboller’.  We used a regular skillingsboller recipe and then added raisins, Nugatti (the Norwegian version of Nutella), topped with white icing.  It is very sweet so if you’d like something with a little less buzz then I suggest a scattering of 86% chocolate shavings instead.  In Norway there is also a pre-mix you can buy of sugar, butter and cinnamon, or a chocolate combination.

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Mørketidsboller Recipe

(boller recipe from the skillingsboller)

125 g butter
5oo mls milk
50 g dry yeast
125 g caster sugar
800-900 g sifted white flour

Filling:
Nugatti (or Nutella) or shaved 86% chocolate
Raisins

Topping:
1/2 cup icing sugar
Water
Vanilla essence

Method:

Melt the butter and cool a little.  Put in the milk to warm.  Mix together sugar and flour.  Add in yeast and pour in milk-butter liquid.  Mix with an electric bread beater for 5 minutes.  Put plastic over the bowl and let the dough rise for 40 minutes.

On a lightly floured bench, knead the dough a little.  Roll the dough out to 40cmx40cm.  Scrape a very thin layer of Nugatti all the way to the edges.  Or sprinkle the chocolate shavings.  Sprinkle on the raisins.  Roll the dough up into a log (the Nugatti on the inside).  Slice int0 20 even scrolls.  Lay flat on a baking tray with paper.  (You will likely need two trays.)  Let rise for another 45 minutes.
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Pre-heat oven to 220°C.  Put buns in the lower middle for 10-12 minutes.

Allow to cool.  Mix icing sugar in a small bowl with a few drops of water and a few drops of vanilla essence.  Add a little bit of water at a time if needed to get a ‘drizzle’ texture in the sugar.  Drizzle the icing mixture with a spoon around the spiral.

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This is a very sweet bun and the bread should be fluffy.  Usually the skillingsboller bread turns out a little dryer, hence the icing is a common feature, and the outside forms a light crust, but we’ve found with the Nugatti, the crust stays moist as the chocolate spills out on top and underneath adding moisture and a caramelizing effect from the sugar.  They are really yummy, very strong with the Nugatti – not so much with the 86% shaved chocolate.

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Because this bolle is made with a skillingsbolle dough it is designed to dry out.  Each day it will get a little dryer so you’d want to eat them within three days.  Why did you use a dry bolle dough?  Well, after the first day the boller become perfect to reheat with custard and be used as a quick chocolate Bread and Butter pudding!  Made on Friday for a weekend snack and perfect for Sunday dessert.

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