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Voisilmäpulla (Finnish Butter Eye Buns)

A recipe for Voisilmäpulla (Finnish Butter Eye Buns)! These golden, cardamom-scented buns have a center bursting with butter and sugar.
Course Bread
Cuisine Finnish
Keyword bread, butter, Finland, Finnish, pearl sugar, pulla, voisilmäpulla
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Resting Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 12 minutes
Servings 20 Voisilmäpullat


  • 1 cup lukewarm milk 105-115˚F
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter softened at room temperature
  • 1 large egg


  • 5 tablespoons salted or unsalted butter chilled
  • 1 egg
  • Pearl Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar


  • In a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk. Stir and allow to sit until the yeast is frothy, about 10 minutes.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough attachment or a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cardamom, and salt.
  • Mix in the softened butter, egg, and yeast with milk to form a dough. Add a little more flour if too sticky (just enough to remove the stickiness- don't add too much or it will create tougher rolls) and a little more milk if too crumbly.
  • On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until soft and smooth. Place the dough back in the bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a towel, and allow to rise until doubled, about 1 hour (this may take closer to 2 hours in cooler kitchens).
  • Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or lightly grease.
  • On a lightly floured surface, divide the dough into 20 equal pieces, each about the size of a golf ball (45 grams/1.5 ounces). Roll each piece into a smooth ball and place on prepared baking sheets around 2 inches apart. Cover with dish towels and allow to rise until puffed, about 30 minutes.
  • Use a finger to make a depression in the center of each roll. Cut the chilled butter into 20 equal cubes. Place a cube in each depression.
  • In a small bowl, beat the egg and brush it over each roll. Pour 1/4 teaspoon of granulated sugar directly over each cube of butter in the bun. If desired, sprinkle pearl sugar around the edges.
  • Bake the voisilmäpullat in the preheated oven until golden, about 12 minutes.
  • Allow to cool on a wire rack and they are best served warm.