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December 13th is Santa Lucia

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December 13, 2015 by Polarn O. Pyret

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December 13th is St Lucia Day, a time for singing, mulled spiced wine, and saffron buns. Originally a Catholic feast day, Lucia is a special day that is celebrated all around Sweden, especially in schools and nurseries.

The day starts with a Lucia procession early in the morning when it is still dark outside. Lucia herself enters the room wearing a long white Lucia dress with a red silk ribbon around her waist and a crown of candles on her head. She is followed by singing flower girls with glitter in their hair, star boys wearing cone hats, and last but not least, mischievous gingerbread men and elves. It is a delightful and much loved tradition with candles and holiday songs that for many people is the start of the holiday celebrations.

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A popular element of the Lucia celebrations is saffron buns or saffron cats as they are also called because they resemble curled up, sleeping cats. These saffron “cats” can also be folded and molded into many different shapes.

Here, we offer you some suggestions for customizing your own saffron cats, to make them unique and personal, and equally important, fun to bake.

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Happy Lucia greetings from Polarn O. Pyret.


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