Prinsesstårta (Princess cake)

Yesterday the little princess Estelle, daughter of crown princess Victoria turned one and as it happens my father requested I bake a Prinsesstårta for his birthday celebration which took place on the same day. Although his birthday is on Tuesday. Anyway, the whole thing just seemed incredibly appropriate. I had never made one before and I heard the process is quite elaborate but really it wasn’t too bad at all.

(Side note: How do you like my new theme?)

The original recipe of the Prinsesstårta was published in “Prinsessornas nya kokbok” written by Jenny Åkerström in 1948. Back then it was simply called “Grön tårta” (“Green cake”) but the name was later changed because apparently it was a favourite of her princess students: Märtha, Margaretha and Astrid.

DSC_0765

This recipe is one I found in the fantastic little book that Pärlan’s Konfektyr here in Stockholm has published. Unfortunately for you international readers, it’s only available in Swedish. The shopkeepers and outstanding caramel makers are all retro 30’s/40’s/50’s connoisseurs and the book has the recipes for all their amazing caramels, cakes and even how-to’s about vintage hairstyles and more.

I did however adapt the recipe slightly.

One 26cm/10inch cake.

Sponge:

4 eggs

1.5 dl sugar

1.25 dl AP flour

1.25 dl potato starch

1 teaspoon baking powder

Vanilla pastry cream:

2 egg yolks

2 tablespoons potato starch

3 tablespoons sugar

30g butter (unsalted)

1 vanilla pod

3 dl heavy cream

Lemon curd:

juice & zest of 1 lemon (should be about 50g of juice)

1 dl sugar

50g butter (unsalted)

2 eggs

 

Other ingredients:

2 dl raspberry jam

8 dl heavy cream (for whipping)

green marzipan for covering the cake

marzipan rose and leaves for decoration

icing sugar for decoration

 

How-To:

Lemon Curd:

Combine butter and half the sugar (0.5 dl) with lemon juice + zest in a pot and bring to a boil, cook until the sugar has dissolved completely.

Whip together the eggs and the other half of the sugar in a bowl until fluffy.

Keep whipping the egg mixture whilst slowly pouring in the lemon mixture.

Pour the now combined lemon curd mix back in the pot and heat up whilst stirring, until it becomes thick (this happens as the mixture comes to about 82 degrees C°).

Pour the thickened lemon curd into a bowl or jar and set aside until completely cooled.

Vanilla pastry cream:

Put all the ingredients in a bowl, whisk until combined and and heat it up in a pot until thick. (Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla pot and add the seeds as well as the scraped out pod to the mix, take the pod out when the cream has thickened). Easy as that! Just set is aside to cool (same principle as with the lemon curd).

Sponge:

Turn your oven on to 175 C°.

Whisk eggs and sugar until white and fluffy.

Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, sift them and fold into the egg & sugar mixture.

Thoroughly grease and bread a  26cm/10inch spring form pan and pour in the batter.

Bake for 30 minutes, then set aside to cool completely.

When cooled: cut the sponge into 3 layers using a serrated knife (first you should trim the top if it is uneven). Cut the layers so that the top and bottom of the cake are equally thick. The middle layer should be just slightly thinner than the two others.

Assembly:

Whip the cream (listed under “other ingredients) quite stiffly. If using a stand mixer, remember to keep a close eye on it. I got distracted, left the room and came back to butter instead of whipped cream and had to run to the store to get more. It happens quicker than you might think.

Place the bottom layer on a rotating cake stand or whatever you think works best for cake assembly. Pipe a border of the whipped cream on the outer edge of the sponge layer to keep the filling from spilling out the edges.

Spread out a layer of raspberry jam inside the border and then on top of the jam, do the same with your lemon curd.

Put the second layer on (this would be the “top layer” of the actual sponge, so by now you should just have that slightly thinner, middle layer left). Pipe another border around the edge and fill it with the vanilla pastry cream. Then plop on almost all of the remaining cream (you need a little bit left for covering the entire thing) and using an off set spatula, create a dome shape.

DSC_0758

Since I’m kind of rubbish at explaining this, I’m going to link you to a video tutorial I found helpful: CLICK HERE (this video is in Swedish but you don’t need the audio to see how it should be assembled). WATCH IT!

Now to the last sponge layer (the thinnest one), trim off the edges (since they’re a bit harder after cooking against the pan) because you want this layer to be a pliable as possible. Now put this layer on top of the whipped cream dome and press lightly, ensure the dome shape is still there. Now cover the entire thing in marzipan (rolled out of course). The easiest way of determining if the lid will be large enough is taking a sewing thread and with it, measure the diameter and height of the uncovered cake. Then compare the length you measured out with the thread to the marzipan you rolled out. Smooth out the sides and trim off any extras. Move to a display plate of your choice.

Dust with icing sugar and decorate with a marzipan rose!

DSC_0769

DSC_0779

DSC_0763

 

Happy baking you guys!

 

Chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

This weekend I went to a dinner party with a couple of girlfriends. Everyone was supposed to bring something to contribute to the dinner part of the party. All in all, everything was very delicious, there was quiche, insalata caprese, roasted veggies, dessert cheeses, crackers, fruit, bread and more. I made cupcakes, because really… What else? I made them in mini formates and I had all these ideas on how to make them Halloween-y and spooky and super creative but in the end time ran away from me and all my intricate plans went into the bin and I just made cute little cuppy cakes. They were good though, so all ended well. It was a good night with good friends, good food and good wine. Success!

This recipe is from the Hummingbird Bakery’s cookbook, basically it’s an entire book with all sorts of delicious cupcakes and more. Honestly, of all the recipes for cupcakes (the base at least, when it comes to frostings and fillings I like to get creative) I’ve used, they have the best ones. I’ve been to the actual shop in London as well, it’s great!

So this is a devil’s food cake base and a basic cream cheese frosting.

I doubled the batch and got about 40 mini cupcakes (I did not double the batch however and I had enough to frost about 30, which was fine for me but obviously if you need 40 frosted cupcakes you’ll have to get a little creative with the calculator).

Chocolate cupcake base: (makes for approx. 12 full sized cupcakes)

100g plain flour

20g cocoa powder

140g caster sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

a pinch of salt

40g unsalted butter, at room temp.

120ml whole milk

1 egg

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used about 1 teaspoon vanilla sugar, which is icing sugar with vanilla bean in it)

Cream cheese frosting:

300g icing sugar

50g unsalted butter, at room temp.

125g cream cheese, cold

(I also added 1 teaspoon of vanilla sugar)

How to:

Preheat oven to 170 degrees C (325F).

In a freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment beat, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, sugar, butter and salt on slow speed until a sand-like consistency is reached.

Whisk milk, egg and vanilla in a jug and incorporate half the wet ingredients into the flour mixture while beating at slow speed until everything is combined, turn the mixer up to high for a couple of seconds to get rid of any lumps. Add the remaining egg mixture and mix on slow until everything is combined, then continue beating for a minute or two until smooth. Do not overmix.

Divide the batter between paper cases in a muffin tin until 2/3 full. Bake for 20-25 minute (if you’re making mini cupcakes, bake for about 16 minutes) or until the sponge bounces back when touched. A skewer or toothpick inserted in the centre should come out clean but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re done. I’ve learned this the hard way. The best way to make sure they’re done is to touch them and make sure no dents form, they should spring right back.

Leave to cool completely on a cooling rack.

Frosting:

Beat icing sugar, vanilla sugar and butter until combined and well mixed with the paddle attachment, then add the cold cream cheese and continue beating until everything completely combined. Turn the mixer up to high and beat until light fluffy, this will take about 5 minutes. Check on it regularly as cream cheese frostings tend to easily become runny.

Happy baking!

Strawberry cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

Sorry it took so long for me to upload this post, I’ve been having issues transferring my photos from my camera memory card to my computer.

So a few weekends ago I was home alone and got extremely bored so I decided to make cupcakes. We had some strawberries in the fridge as well as cream cheese, so I thought: Perfect combo!  I divided this recipe so that I got like three cupcakes out of the batch because, well, I wasn’t about to gulp down 12 of them on my own. That’s just not healthy. But I’m gonna post the whole recipe for you 🙂

Also, I’ve decided to stop writing both US and metric measurments, because well, the conversion gets a little iffy sometimes and if you want it converted, it’s pretty easy to just Google for a converter. Hope that’s OK. Feel free to comment if you feel otherwise.

Makes twelve regular sized cupcakes

Strawberry cupcakes

120 grams plain flour

140 grams caster sugar

1.5 teaspoons baking powder

40 grams softened, unsalted butter

pinch of salt

120 millilitres whole milk

0.5 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 organic egg (my preference)

12 large strawberries, chopped into small pieces

1 tablespoon corn flour (corn starch)

Cream Cheese Frosting

300 grams sifted icing sugar

50 grams softened, unsalted butter

125 grams cold cream cheese

zest of 1 lime

SMALL pinch of salt

How-to:

Preheat your oven to 170 degrees Celsius (325F)

Beat the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and butter into a mixer with the paddle attachment on low until you get a sandy consistency and everything is combined.

Pour in the milk and vanilla and turn the mixer up to medium speed and mix until everything is well combined. Then add the egg and continue mixing untill everything is well incorporated.

Mix the chopped strawberries with the corn flour in a separate bowl until the berries are coated. This is to seal in some of the liquid the berries release whilst being cooked so that the cupcakes don’t become too mushy.

Divide the batter between the cupcake cases in your muffin tin and bake for 20-25 minutes. A skewer should come out relatively clean. Leave them to cool slightly in the tin (this is to ensure they don’t lose their shape) and them move them onto a cooling rack. Do not frost until they’re completely cooled or the frosting will become a melted mess.

While the cupcakes are cooling, you can make the frosting.

Start by beating the sugar and butter in a freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment on medium-slow speed until combined. Then add the cold cream cheese and lime zest, continue beating until it comes together and is well mixed. Then turn the speed up to medium-high and mix for at least 5 minutes. Do not overbeat, cream cheese frostings has a tendency to quickly become runny.

Frost your cooled cupcakes with the frosting and decorate with sliced strawberries or whatever else you prefer.

Happy baking!

Apple streusel cake for MOTHER’S DAY!

I made this cake for mothers day. Let’s just say I earned some bonus points. This cake is very simple but packed with flavour!

Even though this cake doesn’t photograph well, trust me when I tell you, it’s easily gulped down. Quickly and in large quantities!

Apple cake with streusel topping

4 eggs

4 dl / 1.75 cups granulated sugar

100 grams butter

6 dl / 2.5 cups all-purpose flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

pinch of salt

2 dl / 0.8 cup yoghurt or sour cream

8 small or 4 large apples of your choice

3 tablespoons apple sauce

Topping:

50 grams butter

1.5 dl / 0.6 cup all-purpose flour

1 dl / 0.4 cup granulated sugar

Batter:

Set your oven to 175 degrees Celsius (350F). Melt your butter and set it aside to cool. Whisk the eggs and sugar until white and fluffy. Mix the dry ingredients and sift into the egg mixture, then add the yoghurt or sour cream and melted butter a stir until combined. Peel the apples and dice into relatively small cubes, fold them into the batter together with the apple sauce. Grease and bread a springform pan (approx. 24cm / 9.5 inches in diameter). Pour the batter into the springform pan and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

While the cake is baking, pinch together the ingredients for the topping until it has the consistency of damp sand. When the 20 minutes are up, take the cake out of the oven and put the streusel topping on. Then bake for an additional 30-40 minutes. Test it with a fork in the middle of the cake, it should come out clean. It doesn’t have to come out completely dry but it also shouldn’t be wet.

Happy baking!

French chocolate truffle cake. YES.

This was passed down to me by my grandmother and it’s a hit every time I make it. I’ve had requests for the recipe multiple times so I thought I’d be well worth a spot on the blog! So here it is, the recipe for my French chocolate truffle cake (truffle as in the chocolate candy, not the mushroom).

4 eggs

6 dl / 2.5 cups granulated sugar

200g melted butter

pinch of salt

3 dl / 1.25 cups all-purpose flour

8 tablespoons cocoa powder

0.5 dl / 0.25 cup cold strong coffee

Optional: 150 grams of chocolate ganache or melted chocolate (I used some ganache I had left over in the fridge). Also you can flavour the cake with pretty much anything, like: orange zest, amaretto, berries or even spices.

Turn on the oven to 175°C (350°F).

Stir together sugar and eggs until well mixed. Do not whisk, you don’t want air in this batter. Then stir in the butter and sift the dry ingredients into the egg batter and mix  gently until smooth. Stir in the coffee, ganache and any flavourings.

Grease a spring form pan and pour in the batter. Bake for approximately 30 minutes. Check every minute or so after 20 minutes has passed to make sure it doesn’t come out dry. The cake should still be quite wet in the middle but relatively dry around the edge of the pan.

The cake should sit in the fridge for at least 8 hours (I usually bake it in the evening and let it sit in the fridge over night).

Serve in any manor you wish!

Happy baking!

 

 

My very own recipe for CARROT CAKE

Let me start by saying that I have a good feeling about this one. I’ve had (and still have, although my capacity for updating seems to be about as consistent as subways in Stockholm during the winter season) a few blogs during my long long long short life time, but blogging is difficult when what your writing about is either:

A: Lacking a coherent theme

OR

B: Doesn’t actually appeal to you interests in a way that will make you WANT to update (this is crucial)

Baking is a passion of mine and my aspirations of attending a certain prestigious and hell-a expensive culinary school in Paris, is about the only thing I have to look forward to after graduating upper secondary school. Yes, it will require a lot, and that truly means A LOT, of hard work in order to pay for said studies.

Following your dreams is not an easy thing to do, but I’m not really in much of a hurry, I’m only eighteen and I’d like to give the nine-to-five lifestyle a go before I go back to school again. Do some heavy drinking, some heavy dancing and some heavy sleeping pilates, get a job and acquire some life experience.

This recipe is the first in the line of many (hopefully) on this blog due to the fact that this was the first recipe I engineered (fancy word, huh? impressed yet?) myself. Carrot cake is a classic and there are probably thousands of ways you can make it, everybody has different opinions. With or without raisins? With or without nuts? Should you grate the carrots finely or coarsely? Should you blanch the carrots before adding to the batter? It. Never. Ends.

This is my version and it is the only one I use, once I find a recipe I’m perfectly happy with, I don’t even glance at others (OK, not true, I glance, but I rarely sway). Happy baking!

Me being super focused whilst trying to pipe the cream cheese frosting correctly onto my sister’s birthday (carrot) cake. If you’re wondering what those blobs are on either sides of the “16”, they were supposed to be hearts… Yes I agree that my decorating skills need to be improved, luckily my relatives are not picky.

Carrot cake:

Metric/US

3 organic eggs

3dl OR 1 & 1/4 cups granulated sugar

3dl OR 1 & 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla sugar (if you’re using vanilla extract, add it to the egg mix and not to the dry ingredients)

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground (dried)  ginger

1/2 – 1 teaspoon ground cardamom

150 grams OR 5.30 oz butter

1 pinch of salt

4 1/2 dl OR 2 cups grated carrots (I do not grate them coarsely)

Cream cheese frosting (to die for):

120 grams OR 4.25 oz softened butter

8 dl OR 3 & 1/2 cups icing sugar

1 teaspoons vanilla sugar

1 lime (zest and juice)

200 grams OR 7 oz cream cheese (philadelphia)

HOW TO:

1. Turn on oven to 150 degrees CELSIUS (OR 300 degrees FAHRENEHEIT).

2. Melt butter for batter – set aside to cool.

3. Whisk eggs and sugar until white and fluffy.

4. Combine flour, vanilla sugar, baking powder, spices and salt. Sift into egg batter and fold in.

5. Add melted butter and grated carrots.

6. Pour into a breaded tin (Round and spring sided with removable bottom and about 24 cm OR about 9.5 inches in diameter).

7. Bake in the middle of the oven for approx. 50 minutes. (When the cake is in the oven, you start making your frosting for later).

Check after half an hour and then every now and then to make sure it doesn’t end up to dry. (You may have to bake it for longer than 50 minutes though). Test with a cake tester, it shouldn’t come out sticky.

8. Leave to cool (it really can NOT be even slightly warm when you spread the frosting on it, but don’t go overboard and put the cake in the fridge or even freezer to cool – that will only make it dry. When the whole cake is done, frosted and all, you can store it in the fridge but make sure it’s covered or it’ll go dry and dull).

Really hard instructions for making the frosting:

1. Combine all the ingredients, whip until (kinda) white .

2. Let sit in fridge until set and no longer runny.

3. Spread/pipe onto your cake.

4. DONE.