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Dark Rye and Honey Cake: Festival baking from the heart of the Low Countries

By Regula Ysewijn

Published 2023

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Baked for Vastenavond or Shrove Tuesday in Dutch Limburg, these buns are made from a yeast dough, twisted into a ring or a knot shape and then fried and covered in cinnamon sugar. Today they are available from about a month before Carnival until Ash Wednesday.

The tale surrounding the origin of this bun dates back to 1676 when ring-shaped breads were offered to the French commanders who wanted to besiege the Limburg city of Sittard. Why you’d like to offer pastries to a leade