How to make a Kransekake

I am well and truly in my happy place at the moment. You know why? CHRISTMAS COOKING SHOWS HAVE BEGUN. Last night I put the girls into bed, collapsed on the couch and literally squealed with joy when I saw Paul and Mary on the Lifestyle Food channel with their Great British Bake off Christmas Special. Sigh!

Reminded me of a post I did 3 years ago now with my Aunty when we cooked a Norweigan Christmas Cake known as a Kransekake. Yesterday I finally baked my fruit cake…and this morning I had my first piece of it with a coffee….like Mary said last night there’s just NOTHING better than Christmas baking!

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Original post from 2012 follows…

It took me all of 3.4 seconds to reply to an email from my Aunty Krinny earlier in the week if I’d like her to come down to my place and show me how to make a Kransekake that she has become famous for in our family. My Mum’s side of the family was originally from Norway (and when I say originally I mean many, many generations ago), I blame them for my tall, solid, heavy bones and frame, and she got a recipe a few years ago from a friend of hers that lives over there.

It translates literally as a wreath cake and is a traditional Danish & Norwegian cake eaten on special occasions such as a wedding, baptism, Christmas or New Years Eve. The texture is hard to touch, but soft and chewy to eat. It always looks spectacular and tastes even better, and because of it’s high show pony factor I was expecting it to be quite complicated and a little Zumbo-esque in technique. I was DEAD wrong. Look!

Kransekake

: 700 grams almond meal
: 500 grams icing sugar
: 4 egg whites
: 3 tablespoons plain flour

THAT. IS. IT.

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1. In a large mixing bowl mix together the almond meal and icing sugar

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2. Separate the 4 eggs

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3. Build a well in the centre

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4. And tip the egg whites in. Mix together with a spoon for a little while until combined

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5. And then get your hands in there – kneading the mixture like a dough for a few minutes

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6. Then comes the fun bit! Take small bits at a time and roll them into snake shapes about 1cm thick. The  dough will crumble when you start, but don’t get disheartened! Squish it back and start again. I had to do this about 3 times before it worked – all of a sudden it just does. Must be something to do with the heat of your hands with the mixture. Or something.

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7. Then it’s a matter of placing them into the ring tins (that you have to buy specifically). The round biscuit mixture gets placed into the rings and then cut off when it connects. It’s just like play-doh! Make sure the tins are buttered AND oiled. The spray is no good – old school techniques are required.

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8. There are 18 rings in total (6 tins of 3 in each all slightly smaller than the others). Whack into a pre-heated oven 180 degrees c fan forced or 210 degrees c on bake for 12-15 mins or until golden brown

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9. When they are cooled you use a butter knife to pop them out. If they are resisting, just move around the circle in spots until it pops out.

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10. They then get stacked on top of each other

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11. Bravo! If it was eating time you would just make a simple white drizzle icing – icing sugar and milk and drizzle it down the cake. You could also use melted white or dark chocolate and then decorate with whatever took your fancy! Or just dust with icing sugar.

As we won’t be eating it for a week or so I have it in an air tight container with a piece of bread in there (who knows why but that’s what I was told) and it can even be frozen like that, with the bread in there.

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Extra mixture can be made into cookies that are DELICIOUS. Believe me, I’ve eaten about 8 of them already.

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How good is that? Merry Christmas! Or should I say God Jul?!

Kransekake

Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 15 minutes
Total time 30 minutes
Meal type Dessert
Occasion Christmas

Ingredients

  • 700g Almond meal
  • 500g Icing Sugar
  • 4 Egg Whites
  • 3 tablespoons Plain Flour

Directions

Step 1
In a large mixing bowl mix together the almond meal and icing sugar
Step 2
Separate the 4 eggs
Step 3
Build a well in the centre
Step 4
And tip the egg whites in. Mix together with a spoon for a little while until combined
Step 5
And then get your hands in there – kneading the mixture like a dough for a few minutes
Step 6
Then comes the fun bit! Take small bits at a time and roll them into snake shapes about 1cm thick. The dough will crumble when you start, but don’t get disheartened! Squish it back and start again. I had to do this about 3 times before it worked – all of a sudden it just does. Must be something to do with the heat of your hands with the mixture. Or something.
Step 7
Then it’s a matter of placing them into the ring tins (that you have to buy specifically). The round biscuit mixture gets placed into the rings and then cut off when it connects. It’s just like play-doh! Make sure the tins are buttered AND oiled. The spray is no good – old school techniques are required.
Step 8
There are 18 rings in total (6 tins of 3 in each all slightly smaller than the others). Whack into a pre-heated oven 180 degrees c fan forced or 210 degrees c on bake for 12-15 mins or until golden brown
Step 9
When they are cooled you use a butter knife to pop them out. If they are resisting, just move around the circle in spots until it pops out.
Step 10
They then get stacked on top of each other
Step 11
Bravo! If it was eating time you would just make a simple white drizzle icing – icing sugar and milk and drizzle it down the cake. You could also use melted white or dark chocolate and then decorate with whatever took your fancy! Or just dust with icing sugar.

As we won’t be eating it for a week or so I have it in an air tight container with a piece of bread in there (who knows why but that’s what I was told) and it can even be frozen like that, with the bread in there.

Have you been doing some Christmas baking?
Or mostly eating? I’ve broken the fruit mince tart ban as it’s December…it’s not going to be pretty!
Do you love Christmas cooking shows too?

Comments

  1. Incredible! I love the family history that Christmas baking brings.

    PS. We have already eaten *both* the Christmas cakes I’ve made. Time to make another! 🙂

  2. I love the stories surrounding these traditional Christmas goodies!
    love those purpose built moulds! … gorgeous!
    love old bits of cooking kit!
    I like watching all cooking shows! … because always hoping something will rub off and stick!
    I can make things look good!
    lol m:)X

  3. Must. Find. Tins. More to the point, must get them here in time for Christmas. Adore cooking shows – especially Xmas ones. Adore Xmas, especially the cooking. Very happy time of the year for me. xx

    • Hope you can get some!

    • not entirely necessary. I did this some many years ago, rolled out the snakes and baked them on flat tray in graduated sizes. Tins would be quicker for sizes, but I did not even know of special tins then.

      Then disaster struck. I had mine stored in a tin and one son and a friend came home late after a concert rehearsal. All they could find which took their fancy were the rings in tin awaiting assembly. When I came to put them together, I was puzzled. Some seemed to be missing. I had not time or ingredients in house to make more, so just improvised. However, I was decidedly unimpressed.

  4. thelittleredhen says:

    I made one of these last year. Just eyeballed-no tins. It was a lot less stressful than the dessert that I normally make and was a success. I am definitely in Team Kranskekake.

  5. One of my past girlfreinds was norwegian and each chrissy and easter her gran mother who spoke no english made this .It would last all of 15mins lol It was and has been the best dry cake desert ect i have evr eaten, even when my mates came over an they saw some theyd sneak a ring a scoff it down real quick.Think ill make it soon as my sweet tooth has been giving me hell lately.Thanks for the recipe, i couldnt read or understand my girls nanna lol

  6. Kat Smitho says:

    This recipe reminds me a little of a stuff macaron. I don’t think I have any genetic connection to the Norse countries, but I like to pretend!! Think this may be my contribution to Christmas Festivities this year

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