Baking Through Fika: Summer Torte
As promised, here is a much more complicated recipe from Fika! I destroyed my kitchen with this one, so you know it’s good.
For my third dessert I tried my hand at a layered cake filled with a lemon mousse, topped and filled with fruit and frosted around the edges with sweetened whipped cream and almonds. Are you drooling yet?!
I ran into a few little issues with the ingredients in this recipe. Since these recipes are Swedish, some of the ingredients are not things you’d find in a non-European kitchen. Here are the ingredients I struggled with and how I worked it out.
- Potato flour: I did not have any potato flour (anyone out there use it on a regular basis?) and was not about to go buy some for a measly 1/4 cup. After a little research I decided to grind potato flakes into a flour-like consistency. It worked just fine.
- Gelatin sheets: This is a European thing, or at least it seems to be based on my limited internet searching. I could order gelatin sheets on Amazon, OR I could find a way to use powdered gelatin. Turns out that 4 gelatin sheets (called for in the recipe) is just about equivalent to 1 packet of powdered gelatin. Sprinkle it over 1/4 cup of cold water before using it. Problem solved.
- Jelly Sugar: This turned out to be a non-issue since I simply decided to skip this part of the recipe! You are supposed to use the sugar to make a glaze for the fruit on top of the torte, which makes it nice and shiny. I just chose not to glaze the fruit, and it was fine. But just so you know, jelly sugar is not just plain ol sugar. It contains pectin which causes it to gel when mixed with water and heated. I’m interested to try it, but since it wasn’t easy for me to find I didn’t use it. When talking about this with my Aunt Vivie, she suggested heating up some jam and glazing with that. Wish I’d talked to her before making this! I think that would be a great alternative.
It wasn’t just the ingredients that tested my baking knowledge and skill! The methods for making the lemon mousse filling and the cake were things I had never done before. The filling ended up being just as it should be (at least I think it was) but the cake was maybe not as tall as it should have been, and it was sunken in the center. When I sliced it in half the middle of the top layer was significantly thinner than the outer edges. BUT when all was said and done, this was super good. I’m glad I made it during the summer, it is a perfect summer dessert.
This is best eaten within a few days, so make it for guests (it serves 6-8) or for a family who will eat it within that time! In my house I am the only one eating stuff like this, so I pawned it off on a few friend and visitors who were kind enough to help me finish it.
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup potato flour
- 1/3 cup flour
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 envelope powdered gelatin (4 gelatin sheets)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- zest and juice of one lemon
Fruit and Garnish
- Some combination of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries (3-4 cups total)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1-2 teaspoons powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 couple hefty handfuls of sliced almonds (toasted if desired)
- 1/4 cup jelly sugar heated with 1/4 cup water OR heated apricot jam OR nothing
- Pre-heat oven to 400F. Grease a 10-inch springform pan or line it with parchment.
- Heat a pot of water over medium heat. Beat the eggs and sugar with a hand mixer until light and fluffy in a bowl placed over the hot water. Once the mixture reaches 140F (about 7 minutes) remove from the heat but continue to beat for a few minutes.
- Sift the potato flour and all purpose flour over the egg mixture, then fold it into the eggs until just combined. Pour into the prepared pan and bake in the lower third of the oven for 15-18 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes, remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack.
- Whip the cream to medium-stiff peaks and keep in the fridge.
- Sprinkle the gelatin over 1/4 cup cold water and let bloom.
- Beat the egg and sugar until light, then beat in the lemon zest.
- Pour the lemon juice into a small saucepan. Add the gelatin and heat over low to melt the gelatin. Once melted, remove from the heat. Stir in a spoonful of the melted gelatin into the egg mixture, repeat 2-3 times to temper the eggs, then add all of the gelatin mixture and mix to combine. Fold in the whipped cream.
Layer and Assemble
- Prepare the pan by first cutting a cardboard round the size of the cake. Line the spring form pan with plastic wrap, then place the cardboard round in the bottom of the pan.
- Divide the cake in to two layers and place one layer (the sturdier of the two) into the pan. Spread a good layer of the mousse (not quite half) onto the cake, then place half of the fruit on top. If you are using strawberries be sure to slice them.
- Place the other layer on top and repeat with some (but probably not all) of the lemon mousse and the rest of the fruit. You can use whole strawberries on top (stems removed). Refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
- Before removing the torte from the refrigerator whip the cream with the sugar and extracts.
- Remove the torte from the pan and spread the cream around the edges, then press the almonds into the cream. Slice and serve!