Prep 2 hrs
Cook 1 hr
Limpa bread is a traditional Swedish rye bread which is flavored with molasses, anise, and orange peel. Limpa bread is moist and extremely flavorful with a rich, almost intoxicating odor. This bread is extremely popular in Sweden and in areas with a large Swedish population. This recipe is also easily made into rolls, if you wish. From the Minnesota Scandinavian chapter of the United States Regional Cookbook, Culinary Arts Institute of Chicago, 1947.
- 1 cake yeast
- 2 1⁄4 cups water, lukewarm
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 cups milk
- 3 cups flour
- 1 cup dark corn syrup (Karo preferred)
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons anise seed
- 1⁄2 cup molasses (either light or medium)
- 3⁄4 cup butter
- 8 cups rye flour (more as needed)
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 oranges, zest of, grated or 1⁄4 cup candied orange peel, chopped
- Soften yeast in 1/4 cup lukewarm water; add sugar, remaining water and milk.
- Add white flour and beat well; set aside to rise until double in bulk.
- Mix syrup, seeds and molasses in a saucepan.
- Let come to a boil one minute and strain out seeds.
- Add butter and let cool.
- When lukewarm, add yeast mixture with rye flour and salt.
- Add grated orange rind or chopped orange peel and knead well on a floured board.
- Cover and let rise until doubled.
- Shape into round loaves and place in greased pans; let rise until doubled.
- Bake in a 400F oven for 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350F and bake for an additional 45 minutes.
- Remove from pans to a cooling rack and brush with butter while still hot.
I've never made limpa bread homemade before, and it's been many years since I've eaten it. I wanted to make it for my Swedish father-in-law, who loves everything Swedish. I was concerned about the dough--it was very dense and didn't seem to rise at all. The bread came out of the oven moist, solid, and definitely flavored like limpa that I remember. My husband thought it was wonderful. Thank you for submitting this recipe for us to try.
Although the prep time is long, this bread is delicious and well worth the effort. A bread that I will now add to holiday traditional foods. The complex flavors are delightful! Certainly not a bread that can be made for every day, but one that can be looked forward to. Yum!