Wednesday, 4 September 2019

MY SWEDISH PRINCESS CAKE RECIPE (NO BAKING REQUIRED)





I am not a big cake person - I would happily pass on your standard Victoria sponge, really do not get the whole hype that surrounds cupcakes and would always choose ice cream for dessert over even the fanciest of brownies, but when I had my first slice of Swedish Princess cake, or Prinsesst?rta as it is called originally called, I could not help but become utterly obsessed with this rather special cake.

Why is it so special you may ask? Well, princess cake isn't only a great name for a cake, I mean who doesn't want to release ones inner princess when it comes to choosing a cake to bake, but it also has a fabulous history behind it.

The cake was in fact invented at the Swedish royal court back in the 1940’s, where it was the favourite sweet treat of the three young princesses growing up there at the time. The cake itself was first made by their Home Economy teacher and was initially simply called gr?n t?rta or green cake but quickly and quite rightly so became somewhat of a national treasure and favourite baked good of all Swedes, and was soon known as princess cake as a sweet nod to the cakes biggest and first fans!

Nowadays there is even a whole week dedicated to the cake in Sweden and I have to say rightly so because on top of its excellent name and history it also tastes absolutely brilliant. What makes it so good? Well it's not too doughy and not too sweet, almost light like a cloud, and made up of alternating layers of airy sponge, raspberry jam, patisserie cream, and a thick layer of whipped cream, all topped with a thin layer of green marzipan that gives the cake a dome like appearance.

I first experienced the wonders of this cake at wonderful little Swedish bakery Bageriet, just by Covent Garden, where you can order it by the slice or as whole (which my office does whenever a birthday is upon us) but I loved the cake so much that I became intrigued if I could recreate it at home.

Now first things first I am not a baker - I love cooking and without sounding big headed think I am pretty good at it, but I do a lot free-styling when it comes to ingredients and measurements. Not ideal when it comes becoming a successful baker where it is all about being precise and patient to make a cake rise and prevent an utter baking disaster. But I am here to tell you that you don't have to be planning your application for the next season of the Great British Bake Off to succeed at making my version of the famous princess cake!

I mean I don't even own an electrical whisk or scales and still ended up with a stunning and very yummy end result which should be proof enough of how easy my cheat's princess cake recipe is to make. Indeed everyone that tried it including me was wowed, I even preferred it to the ones I have tried at Swedish bakeries, a little less doughy and more creamy,  and of course with some of my blood, sweat (I hand whipped that cream for a good 25 minutes) and tears involved that made it that extra special to enjoy.

You can get all the 'cheats' ingredients like the Swedish pastry cream kagecreme, the sponge layers (lagekage bunde) and green marzipan lid lid at the Scandinavian Kitchen, a fab Swedish deli and supermarket not far from Oxford Circus which sells all kinds of Scandi foods, either by popping by in-store or ordering them online from their site. Once you have those bits you will only need some fresh whole milk, whipping cream and a good raspberry jam (I went for Bonne Maman). 

Usually the cake is topped with a pink marzipan rose but to make my life even easier I got a beautiful ready made edible flower decoration from Sainsbury's and I have to say the end result was quite something!

I have already been asked to re-make this for various upcoming birthdays and of course my office and I will gladly add this easy peasy but very impressive cake to my regular recipe repertoire.

INGREDIENTS
1 pack lagekage bunde
1 pack kagecreme crème patisserie
1 pack green marzipan lid
1/2 jar of raspberry jam
700 ml whipping cream
100 grams icing sugar
Flower decoration

METHOD:
  • Whip the cream together with a few table spoons of icing sugar. Whip it to hard peaks (not soft)
  • Make the Creme patisserie: 1 sachet of kagecreme powder mixed with 500ml whole milk. Whisk well and chill for 15 minutes in fridge before using.
To assemble the cake:
  • Remove packaging from sponge cake layers. On your chosen tray, add first layer of sponge. Add on top a thin layer of raspberry jam, then add half the crème patisserie evenly all over. Add sponge layer and repeat. Add top lid.
  • On the top sponge layer, carefully add the whipped cream in a “dome” shape – you will need to use a spatula here to get it quite smooth all over. You’re looking for around 3-4 cm “top” on the cake.
  • Once you are happy with the whipped cream, add the green lid. This is the tricky bit. Carefully unwrap the lid and line it up to go on the cake. You only have one shot at this as it is hard to move. Once placed, carefully press the sides down around the cake. Some cream may seep out, so use a spoon to wipe any excess so the lid will fit snugly
  • Use a piping nozzle and any leftover whipped cream to pipe rosettes of cream around the edge to hide the bottom of the marzipan and any folds.
  • Top with flower decoration and enjoy!

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