Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kransekake: Norwegian wreath cake

My dear mother often makes this cake for special occasions such as Christmas, Norwegian national day and birthdays. I love it for three reasons. Firstly it looks spectacular, secondly is very typically Norwegian and unique and thirdly it tastes superb!

So this Norwegian national day my aunt Åse and I made one. It was heaps fun. Here is the recipe:

500g almonds
500g icing sugar plus extra for decorating
4 egg whites

1) First blanch half of the almonds (250g). It only takes a minute or so in boiling water for the skin to come loose. Then dry the blanched almonds in a warm spot over night or for up to a week.
2) Then grind all the almonds, preferably using a hand grinder to get an uneven result. Otherwise use an electric mixer, an aim for a meal which is a little courser than sand.
When the almonds are ground, fill the sink with water and add a pot to the water bath.
3) Put the almond meal in the pot and add the icing sugar then the egg whites one by one.
4) Knead the dough in the pot, making sure not to splash in any water from the water bath. The heat from the warm water is supposed to do something magic to the dough, not really sure what. But it works!
5) Leave the dough to rest in room temperature over night.
6) The next day cut the dough into chunks and roll it out into thin sausages.
7) Fill up the kransekake cake forms (this recipe makes enough for 18 rings) or cut the sausages into fingers. Make sure the sausages are not to thick as they will swell while cooking.
8) Bake for 15 minutes at 150 degrees.
9) Cool the kransekake, then place them in tins overnight with some pieces of bread. The kransekake will soak up moisture from the bread making them nice a chewy.
10) Mix icing sugar with water to make a thick paste. Put the paste into a piping bag and use it to glue the rings together. A wavy pattern is always appealing to the eye.
11) Decorate the cake with small chocolates, flags or ribbons.
12) Enjoy and impress your friends!

If your making kransekake fingers, you can dip them in melted chocolate. Add a little chilli powder to the chocolate for extra punch. It's delicious!


  1. Thank you so much Hannah. My husband's family came to New Zealand from Norway in the late 1800s and I was looking for a Christmas treat to help keep their heritage alive. This looks perfect!

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