It’s midnight on December 13th, 2003. I’m 7 years old, wide awake and excited. I pull on a long white dress and a red sash and place a battery operated candle crown on my head. Caroline and I carry the Lucia buns we helped Mom make the day before on a wooden tray into Mom and Dad’s room, they laugh because we couldn’t possibly wait any longer. We eat soft lucia buns with raisins, savoring the delicious saffron flavor.
It’s 5:26 on December 13th, 2013 and my alarm starts beeping, I groggily think to myself what in the world did I sign up for? Then I remember that I have been excited about this day for a few weeks, ever since I found a gf recipe.
It’s St. Lucia day, a traditional Swedish holiday celebrating St. Lucia, a Christian martyr. In Sweden it is celebrated every December 13. St. Lucia would bring food to the persecuted Christians in Rome, She wore a wreath of candles on her head so that she would be free to carry the food in her hands. That is why girls will wear white dresses, red sashes and crowns of candles when celebrating traditionally.
We haven’t celebrated St. Lucia day in a few years because we didn’t know that there were any GF recipes for Lucia buns, but on a whim I decided to google a recipe, after I found one that looked good and similar to the recipe in our Swedish cookbook, I had to wait a few weeks for the special day. That’s when I found myself waking up at 5:30.
Half of the blood coursing through my veins is Swedish. With blonde hair, blue eyes and fair skin, people have commented telling me I look Swedish. Sweden is one of my top three places I want to visit. I can’t wait to see Sweden with my eyes and photograph it with my camera. I can’t wait to walk on the soil that my ancestors did. My Great Grandmother immigrated to the USA from Sweden.
So back to December 13th, 2013. I pull myself out of bed, and walk downstairs to preheat the oven and make tea to help wake myself up. I pull up the recipe and start heating milk and mixing flours. Almost 2 hours later the buns are finally finished. We eat them at the kitchen table, savoring the saffron infused buns which taste almost the same as the originals. This time I didn’t wear a white dress or a candle crown. But 10 years later I’m seventeen and I baked the buns myself.