As it was my mother’s birthday just a couple of days ago, it seems appropriate to post this recipe of her favourite cake, Princesstårta (Princess Torte) also known as ‘Green Cake’. In Sweden it is seen as a national delicacy and is served all over the country in nearly every restaurant/cafe you come across. It can be eaten as part of the Swedish daily ritual of ‘Fika’ (coffee, cake and a chat) and it can also be found taking centre stage at special celebrations. My Mum’s birthday would never be complete without it. This year I dared to be different and gave her cake a patriotic twist, by making it with blue marzipan to cover and by topping it with a yellow rose. For this version of the cake I replaced the raspberry jam with blueberry jam and added lemon zest to the sponge too – see pic at the end of this post. Although delicious, I confess it did feel wrong, but it was worth a try. Below is my recipe for the traditional version but feel free to give it your own twist. In the past I have also made it in to cupcakes. Fear not for my mother, she will recover from her break in tradition as she and I are off to Sweden at the end of this month and I can bet we will have a slice of the green cake every day!
Grattis på fӧdelsedagen mamma!
For the sponge
125g caster sugar
125g plain flour, sifted
5ml (1tsp) baking powder
50g butter, melted and cooled
For the filling
600ml double cream
125ml ready-made custard
5ml (1 tsp) vanilla essence
75ml (3 Tbsp) raspberry jam
Green & pink food colouring
Icing sugar to dust
- Preheat the oven to 160°c fan (180°c non-fan).
- Grease and line 3 x 8-inch cake sandwich tins.
- In a large mixing bowl, ideally a standalone mixer, whisk together the eggs and caster sugar until thick and pale and able to hold a ribbon trail for a few seconds.
- Gradually pour in the melted butter in a steady stream as you continue to whisk for a further 30 seconds.
- Finally, remove the whisk and very gently fold in the flour and baking powder using a large metal spoon.
- Carefully divide the mixture between the 3 prepared tins and bake for 15 minutes or until slightly risen, golden and springy to touch. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes before removing from the tins and transferring to a cooling rack.
- Meanwhile, colour the marzipan – remove a piece the size of a walnut and colour it pink. Colour the remaining marzipan green, wrap this in clingfilm. On a surface dusted with icing sugar roll out the pink marzipan and using a petal cutter if you have one, alternatively use a knife to cut petal shapes. Roll one petal tightly to make the centre of the rose then add the remaining leaves wrapping around the central one to form a rose. Set to one side.
- Whip the cream until stiff peaks form and remove 2 large heaped spoons and mix with the custard together with the vanilla essence.
- To assemble the cake, place one sponge on a cake plate, spread with the jam and top with another sponge. Cover the second sponge with the custard cream and top with the remaining sponge.
- Add the remaining cream to the top to form a dome shape and spread thinly around the sides.
- Roll out the green marzipan on a surface dusted with icing sugar to a large circle with amble room to cover the cake. Using the rolling pin gently lift the marzipan and lower over the doomed, cream covered cake.
- Carefully smooth the marzipan around the sizes too and trim excess as close to the base as possible.
- Add a little more of the green food colouring to the remaining marzipan and roll out on a dusted surface, cut out some leaf shapes.
- Lightly dust the top of the finished cake with icing sugar and make a small hole in the middle. Insert the pink marzipan rose and surround this with a leaf or two.
- If you are not serving immediately chill in the fridge. Serve within 24 hours.