Scandinavian Baking
Columbus Leth

In Denmark, medaljer are usually offered for sale from bakeries in the afternoon, to be eaten with coffee, not tea. We Scandinavians are coffee drinking nations. You can use any other fruit compote or jam instead of the apple compote here, if you prefer.


Quantity Ingredient

For the pastry

Quantity Ingredient
200g plain flour, plus more to dust
50g icing sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated unwaxed lemon zest
100g chilled butter, chopped
1/2 egg, lightly beaten

For the apple compote

Quantity Ingredient
1 vanilla pod
2 tart eating apples, peeled, cored and chopped, such as Cox’s Orange Pippin
100g caster sugar

For the cream and topping

Quantity Ingredient
200g best dark chocolate, at least 60% cocoa solids
20g butter
200ml double cream


  1. To make the pastry, sift the flour and icing sugar into a bowl and add the lemon zest. Rub in the butter with your fingers until the mixture resembles crumbs. Add the egg and stir until the pastry comes together in a ball. Wrap in cling film and chill for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, for the filling, slit the vanilla pod in half lengthways and scrape out the seeds with the tip of a sharp knife. Put the apples in a saucepan with the sugar and the vanilla seeds and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and leave to simmer for 20 minutes. Stir the apple mixture together to give a thick sauce, then leave to cool.
  3. Preheat the oven to 220°C. Line a baking tray with baking parchment. Roll out the pastry on a floured work surface to a thickness of 2–3mm. Use a 6–7cm diameter cookie cutter, or the rim of a similar-sized glass, to cut the pastry into about 20 discs (you will need an even number of discs, as you are going to be sandwiching them together). Spread them out on the lined baking tray and bake for six or seven minutes, then transfer carefully (they are a bit fragile) to a wire rack to cool.
  4. Meanwhile, break the chocolate for the topping into pieces, place in a small heatproof bowl with the butter and fit over a saucepan of simmering water; the bowl should not touch the water. When melted, leave to cool slightly.
  5. Spread half the discs with the chocolate mixture, leaving a slim border as in the photo. Set aside to let the chocolate set. These are the tops of the ‘medals’.
  6. Whip the cream until just stiff. Fit a piping bag with a 1cm star-shaped nozzle and fill with whipped cream. Take the remaining pastry discs and place 1 tsp of apple sauce in the centre of each. Pipe a ring of cream around the apple sauce. Put the chocolate-coated medals on top and serve immediately.
cream buns
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