Saint-Nicholas men


As I wrote in my blog post, December 6th is Saint-Nicholas day, and in our family, it is a tradition to eat a little Saint-Nicholas pastry man for the occasion.  Since I can’t go to the shop and buy one, I had to come up with a recipe for making my own, gluten free and delicious.

Now if you like my gluten free cinnamon rolls, than you will like these Saint-Nicholas men.  The dough is almost the same.  It is worth noting that you can make this dough and use it to make simple little gluten free plain buns.  My children love this kind of thing for a special breakfast – like on Sunday mornings – with a little butter and jam or honey 🙂

When I made those Saint-Nicholas men the other day, I realised too late that I had run out of raisins.  Normally, you would use little raisins to make some eyes, and maybe even some “coat buttons” on their chests.  I was in a bit of a hurry and didn’t bother brushing them with egg before baking them.  If you did that, they would look nicer – more golden and shiny!  But they tasted lovely anyway, I promise!

So, here is what you need to do:


  • 200 ml tepid water
  • 250 ml milk (at room temperature)
  • 7 g dried yeast
  • 100 g sugar
  • 75 g butter (at room temperature)
  • 1 egg (at room temperature)
  • 500 g gluten free bread flour mix
  • 25 g psyllium husk powder
  • 5 g salt



  • Place the water in a large bowl.  Add the yeast and sprinkle the surface with a little sugar.  Let it stand for about ten minutes until the yeast is activated (see Baking bread)
  • Add the milk.
  • Add – in that order – the sugar, butter, flour, psyllium husk powder, salt and egg.
  • Mix well, until all the ingredients are properly combined.  I used my hand mixer with the dough hooks for this; if you have one, use it – it really helps combine everything well.
  • Let the dough rise for about an hour.  It doesn’t rise much – don’t be surprised – but it should rise a little and become less compact.
  • When the dough has risen, flour your hands a little and take small portions of it which you can shape into little men.  I made a kind of oval ball, then shaped the head and then made two cuts for the arms and a central cut for the legs.  I then shaped the arms and legs a little.
  • Use little raisins to make their eyes.
  • Place the little men onto a sheet of non-stick baking paper.
  • Let them rise again a little – only about 15 minutes.
  • If possible, brush the little men with some egg yolk just before putting them in the oven.
  • Bake in the oven at 180° for 35 minutes.


Hope you enjoy them as much as we did 🙂