Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

January 27, 2022

Scandinavia’s traditional almond cakes are usually eaten on special occasions.

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Almond cakes (kransekage)

Scandinavia’s traditional almond cakes are eaten on special occasions like New Year’s Eve when they’re served at midnight with champagne. At weddings and other festive receptions you have them after dinner with coffee. Of course, they can also be served year-round because they’re just so good!

2⁄3 c. (150 ml) blanched almonds

1 c. (250 ml) superfine sugar

2 egg whites

1 lb. (500 g) homemade marzipan (recipe follows)

24 walnut halves

12 dried apricots, cut into 4 strips each

7 oz. (220 g) semisweet chocolate

Process the almonds and sugar together in a food processor until finely ground. Add the egg whites and process until you have a smooth, white mixture. Make sure the mixture doesn’t get too hot in the processor or the egg whites will start clotting.

Grate the marzipan then blend it into the almond mixture. Transfer to a bowl, cover tightly and let rest in the refrigerator for a couple of hours or overnight.

Shape the mixture into 24, 3½- x ¾-inch (9- x 2-cm) rectangular cakes like shortbread fingers. Press a walnut half on one end of each almond finger and two strips of dried apricot on the other.

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the cakes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack. Melt the chocolate gently in a double boiler then dip the bottom of each almond cake in the chocolate and set on a piece of parchment paper. Makes 24 cakes.

Homemade marzipan

31/3 c. (840 ml) blanched almonds

1 c. (250 ml) confectioners’ sugar, plus extra for kneading

¼ c. (60 ml) water

Process the almonds in the food processor until they become a paste. Add the confectioners’ sugar, process again, add the water and process again until it becomes a firm paste.

Take the marzipan out of the food processor and knead it on a counter dusted with confectioners’ sugar; now it’s ready. It’ll keep for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator and you’ll find it tastes much better than the store-bought stuff. Makes 1 pound (500 g).

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