swedish almond cake
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I think this is called Toscakaka. Or perhaps Toscatårta. A Swedish soft (mjuk!) butter cake (kaka!) with almond topping.
So of course I (very naively) figured that ‘tosca’ would be ‘almonds’ in Swedish, but no such luck – it is, rather grandiosely, presumably named after Puccini’s opera. Such a simple cake? Those Swedes? Ah, but then we have the Victoria sponge which will teach no foreigner new words for ‘jam’ or buttercream’.
It is a very nice little number and I apologise to all Swedes if sounding a little condescending. It is not my belief that simple, whip-things-together-and-mix-a-little recipes are inferior, by any means. Enough to look at my bucket cakes: the ones with soft fruit, the brown apple or the raisin cake. Gorgeous. Firm favourites. Tosca is still a LITTLE number (in 18cm tin unless you scale it up), easy to whip up in 15 minutes plus the baking time and actually perfect for afters or pudding, as it can be baked in advance, topped and blasted under the grill at the last minute. With a dollop of white dairy stuff, no matter which.
Recipe courtesy of Dan Lepard, from his book Short and Sweet.
swedish almond cakeServings: 8Time: 50 minutes
- 50g (3½ tbsp.) butter
- 2 eggs
- 100g (½ cup) caster sugar
- seeds scraped off 1 vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp. double cream
- 100g (scant cup) plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- For the topping:
- 30g (2½ tbsp.) butter
- 75g (2/3 cup) flaked almonds
- 25g (2 tbsp.) caster sugar
- 1 tsp plain flour
- 2 tbsp. double cream
1. Prepare a small 18cm (7in.) flan or cake tin by brushing it with some of the melted butter. Preheat the oven to 180C/ 350F/gas 4.
2. Melt the butter in a small pan. Beat the eggs with the sugar until thick. Add the vanilla and the cream and beat well in. Add the flour mixed with the baking powder and beat in, followed by the butter.
3. Spoon the mix into the tin and bake for 25 minutes until barely firm.
4. Melt the butter for the topping in a small pan, add the almonds, flour, sugar and the cream and mix until bubbling. Take the cake out of the oven and turn the heat up to 200C/400F/gas 6.
5. Spoon the almond mix over the cake and return it to the oven for 7-10 minutes. Remove from the tin and serve while warm, ideally with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of lightly whipped cream.