Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Christmas Breakfast Yummies! - Swedish Tea Ring

In my novel, Land of My Dreams, heroine, Bonny Bryant, makes her family’s favorite Christmas breakfast when she visits Kieran MacDonell’s parents for the first time. I first learned to make a Swedish Tea Ring when I was in junior high Home Economics class. It has been a tradition in my family ever since. It’s a little time-consuming, but well worth the effort!

5 ½ - 6 ½ cups of flour
2 pkgs of Active Dry Yeast
2 Tbsp. suger
1 Tbsp salt
½ cup (1/2) stick of butter or margarine, softened
1 ¼ cups of very hot tap water

Combine 3 cups of flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Stir well to blend. Add softened margarine and blend. Add hot tap water all at once and blend with an electric mixer at medium speed for 2 minutes. (I prefer to use my KitchenAid Mixer) Scrape sides of the bowl occasionally.

Add one more cup of flour. Beat with electric mixer at high speed for 1 minute or until thick and elastic. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.

Stir in the remaining flour gradually with a wooden spoon. Use just enough flour to make a soft dough which leaves the sides of the bowl.  Turn out onto a floured board. Round up into a ball.

Divide the dough into two equal portions. Knead for 5-10 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic. Cover with plastic wrap then a towel. Let rest for 15-20 minutes on board, then punch down.

While the dough is rising, prepare 2 pizza pans with shortening or non-stick spray. Melt two sticks of butter, and gather sugar (either brown or white, since it makes two tea rings, I do one with each, and also some cinnamon.)

One at a time, roll each ball of dough into a square on a floured board with a rolling pin. Cover with one stick of melted butter, staying away from the edges. Cover liberally with sugar and cinnamon and roll into a long roll, sealing the dough at the edges so the butter doesn’t all run out.

Form roll into a circle, sealing the ends together as much as possible to form a ring. With a pair of kitchen shears, cut the ring almost through into loops. Twist the loops around to form a wreath. (If your pan won’t hold each loop turned out, you may want to alternate two loops to the outside and two loops to the inside of the ring.)

This is a cold-rise dough. Brush the surface of the dough with vegetable oil, cover with plastic wrap,  and refrigerate for 2-48 hours.

When ready to bake, remove from refrigerator and let stand for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Use an oiled toothpick to prick any bubbles in the dough just before baking. (If too much butter and sugar have seeped out into the pan, blot it with a paper towel before baking. It will start a fire in the bottom of the oven, I know from experience.)

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until done. Bake on the lower rack for best results.

Remove from pan immediately. I use spatulas to get underneath and place it on a large round platter or a round circle of cardboard covered with aluminum foil.

Immediately drizzle with your favorite glaze. I use a simple glaze of powdered sugar with either water or lemon juice. Let cool.

I wrap it with aluminum foil and refrigerate until Christmas morning, then slice and either eat a room temperature or heat in the microwave. 

Merry Christmas!

About Norma Gail - 
Norma Gail’s debut contemporary Christian romance, Land of My Dreams, set in Scotland and New Mexico released in April 2014. She has led weekly women’s Bible studies for 19 years. Her devotionals, poetry have appeared at, the Stitches Thru Time blog, and in “The Secret Place.” She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, FaithWriters, and the New Mexico Christian Novelists. She is a former RN who lives in the mountains of New Mexico with her husband of 38 years. They have two adult children.

Connect wth Norma at:


  1. This looks delicious. Do you ever add dried fruit to the mix?

    1. I have added raisins. My family isn't into raisins or dried fruit, but personally, I think it would be wonderful. I would suggest making certain it is tucked inside as much as possible. I have had the resins burn a little on top.

  2. LOVE YOUR BOOK, Norma Gail. Highly recommend it!
    I make a Swedish Tea Ring very similar to yours only it calls for milk and instead of sugar and cinnamon on the butter - I use brown sugar and cinnamon. . .I've made this 'traditionally' for 35 years - giving them as gifts - having them for our Christmas breakfast and making sure our adult children have them for their Christmas breakfast each year. . .I missed a year and my siblings/nephews/nieces/children were up in arms about the fact I'd messed up. One year when homeschooling, I'd been teaching the kids some special FAMILY recipes and my son was in fourth grade at the time. He memorized the recipe and during the holidays he helped me make 125 of these to give out to family and friends. Our daughter wanted NO part of it. . .there are some great memories associated with this traditional recipe. Thanks for reminding me of so many. I'm also reminded it's about time to get started on making them for this year. Hugs.

    1. Thank you for your kind words about my book, Joy! I cannot imagine making 125! I have done 4 and thought that was enough work! Thank you for the reminder of how precious our Christmas memories are, and how important it is to pass them on!