Cake

Swedish Princess Cake (Princesstarta)

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Ah, the sweet taste of redemption. This little green mountain of marzipan, whipped cream, custard, sponge cake and raspberry jam is proof that I am the comeback kid this week. Week 43: Swedish Princess Cake

 

Way back in Week 22, I decided I was going to make the funky green masterpiece that is a Princesstarta. After two failed custards, and a healthy dose of grumping and grumbling, I gave up and made French vanilla ice cream. (My mom’s quick thinking to the rescue – so I didn’t have to waste the whole carton of eggs I had attempted to turn into custard. When in doubt, call your Mom. Trust me.)

 

But of course, I couldn’t just let the failure sit there. I was going to have to try the cake again. I know several people who have successfully made one (my sister included), and I watched the GBBO Master Class on Princesstarta for inspiration. The only aspect of the cake that I couldn’t seem to get the hang of was the custard. Lots of mental prep was involved, as you can see.

 

Verdict: it was really rather simple and fun to make! The only daunting aspect of it is that there are so many elements involved. It’d be perfect for high tea, no? It really is a giant petit four!

 

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You are “supposed” to make one giant cake in a 9″ springform pan. When you don’t own a 9″ springform, you use make do with the adorable mini springforms that you do have! It makes one batch easier to share anyway.

 

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I’m not entirely sure why the marzipan top has to be green of all colors, but I have a few theories:

  • A past Scandinavian princess really liked the color green.
  • The baker was reaching for the powdered sugar and spilled coloring into the bowl of marzipan.
  • Or simply that the beige color of marzipan just isn’t exciting enough for a cake!

 

My favorite description that I found in my recipe research was that the marzipan had to be the exact shade of “spring green” in order to be correct for the cake. If you’ve ever been to a Home Depot paint department however, you’ll know that the definition of spring green is in the eye of the beholder.

 

Coloring the marzipan was like playing with play-doh! Way easier than trying to incorporate food coloring into bagel dough, I’m tellin ya.

 

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My stand mixer went on strike, so my handheld mixer from college stepped up to the plate.  *cue the chorus from Centerfield*

 

 

Sponges, before and after the sauna.

 

 

In the spirit of full disclosure, my custard didn’t thicken the way it was supposed to. Custard might be my kryptonite . . . Anyway, everything was right except for the consistency so I decided to keep on keepin’ on.

 

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I opted for pre-made jam, for a few reasons. Primarily, time! Also, the consistency is thicker than homemade jam (at least from whenever I try to make it) and I didn’t want it to soak in or run off the cake.

 

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Stiff peaks! I tried to make Mt. Rainier out of cream but it ended up more like Mt. Saint Helens. Good thing there are no mistakes in art.

 

 

I made a ridge of cream all the way around each layer to contain the custard. It worked surprisingly well!

 

Layer upon layer upon layer. Topped with a mountain of whipped cream – yum! I smoothed the cream into a smooth dome and coated the sides with a little extra for the marzipan to stick to.

 

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Rolled out marzipan or AstroTurf? Up for interpretation.

 

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Next time I’ll make a round stencil and cut it so it would lay flat on the cake. My version this time ended up having the occasional pleats to have it lie flat.

 

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A dash of sugar and voila!

 

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Coming to a tea party near you – mini Swedish Princess Cakes. Happy munching!

 

 

Recipe mostly from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/prinsesstrta_17336

 

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