After you combine the ingredients, traditionally you mix them in a big food processor thingy for at least 4 minutes to make the dough proper. My mom knows we don't have such equipment so she starts the ingredients list with: '1 strong man or faery to knead the dough'
The other ingredients she told me metrically so we googled the amounts to turn them into cups for our US measure utensils as follows:
5dl/ 2.1 cups soy milk (or water)
50g fresh yeast or about 24g dry yeast (dry yeast bags have grams on them in US too)
2dl/ 0.8 cup sugar
1-2 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground cardamom
200g/ 0.9 cup Earth Balance 'butter'
about 1kg/ 10 cups wheat flour
For baking you'll need more melted 'butter', sugar, cinnamon, or applesauce
1. Melt the 'butter' in a big pot, add 'milk'. Heat until lukewarm if you use fresh yeast, or a bit warmer still if you use dry yeast. (Mix the dry yeast in a portion of the flour and add with the flour.)
2. Add sugar, cardamom and salt. We didn't have ground cardamom so we spent like forever cracking full cardamoms open with knife, then emptying the insides to a tablespoon and then manually grounding them once we had enough cardamom particles. I would recommend investing in a package of ground cardamom.
3. Start shoveling the flour into the pot. Mix by hand or with a scraper. As you pour in more flour you have to mix it by hand because the dough is very thick. The verb we're talking of is: KNEADING. You need to knead for at least 5-10 minutes if you're doing this by hand.
Daniel did most of our kneading as I (conveniently?) took the laundry to the basement.
The elf in serious kneadery! We split the goo-monster in two parts at this point so I could knead too. About 3 minutes into working the dough I sprained a muscle in the back of my hand. Let this serve as a warning :P It hurt!!
IMPORTANT: Close your windows when you're dealing with pulla dough - it needs to rise and draft kills the yeast action. Eventually, despite sweating and pulla-related injury, our dough turned perfect:
4. Cover the pot with cloth. We used two little kitchen towels. Then got paranoid and added a big, pretty white scarf on top of the towels so the dough would stay warm for sure. After 30 minutes the alien dough from a moon of Saturn had magically more than tripled in size!! !!!! !!!!! !! !!
5. Take a big piece of dough, about the size of three large apples. Knead it a bit more to get air bubbles out. Flatten it with a rolling pin. Use flour on the table as much as you feel is necessary so the dough won't get stuck to the table at any point while you roll it. Make it a big square/round shape, as thin as you feel is possible without the dough breaking anywhere.
6. Spread a layer of melted 'butter' on the dough sheet, then sprinkle cinnamon and sugar. Alternatively, and for a lighter version, skip the butter and sugar and instead spread a thinnish layer of apple sauce, then sprinkle cinnamon. Then roll the sheet all the way like in the pic.
7. Cut the roll in triangle-like angles. Lift each little pre-pulla 45 degrees up, to stand on it's widest side, with the tip of the 'triangle' up. Then push it down with finger so that the sides kind of puff out and the middle part is sunken in.
8. Put pullas on parchment paper and leave ample space between each because they will expand in the oven. Put a thin cloth on them and let rise for about 10-15 minutes more. Heat oven to 225 Celsius/ about 435F and bake the pullas for 10 minutes (or even a bit less). We burnt the bottoms of our first batch -- don't do over 10 minutes!
Ooo yeahh! Here are our delicious US born space alien cosmic love explosion pullas! We experimented and sprinkled raisins on one sheet of dough before rolling and cutting it -- and it turned out great. Our favorites are the ones with apple sauce. On the top right corner you can see a pulla flower formation. It's actually a pulla cake that turned out funny looking. To do your own funny looking pulla cake, just combine the pullas before you put them in the oven and as they expand they'll attach to each other.
Here's a quick video Daniel took with his phone - he says in the end 'to be continued' but we were too involved in the pulla creation process later on to have time to take more videos :) I think it took us four hours to make these badboys.