Swedish Coffee Braid

Every year around Christmas time, my grandmother would get out the ingredients to bake the traditional Swedish Christmas bread.

The scent of the Swedish bread baking in the oven is one of the warmest and most vivid memories of my childhood. The smell of yeast would permeate the house like a bakery, and fill our home with the warmth of the Christmas spirit. All the children loved these treats so much that my grandmother would have to hide them, or they'd disappear!

Here's the recipe she used:

Makes 2 braids

  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup margarine
  • 4 ½ cups flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 2 packages dry yeast
  • 1 teaspooon cardamom
  • 2 eggs, beaten


  • 1 egg, beaten
  • crystal sugar
  • sliced almonds

HEAT MILK, WATER, and margarine until very warm. Mix about one-third of the flour with the other dry ingredients and beat into liquid. Add 2 eggs and beat. Add more flour until dough can be kneaded. Knead and place in buttered bowl to rise until doubled, about 1 hour. Punch down, divide in half, then divide each half in thirds and make 2 braids.

Place on a greased cookie sheet and cover in warm place until doubled, 30 to 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350ยบ F. Brush dough with beaten egg. Sprinkle with sugar and almonds. Bake for about 20 minutes.

Make this traditional Swedish Christmas treat your own, and enjoy!

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