A royal Norwegian dessert
A note from your editor-in-chief, Lori Ann Reinhall:
Over the years, The Norwegian American has been fortunate to share the recipes of some of the very best Nordic master chefs, cooks, and bakers. Many of them have served on our staff to bring you the very best of Norwegian and Norwegian-American food.
When searching for the very best for this special Royals issue, it seemed like a natural to turn to Daytona Danielsen (formerly Strong), one of our former Taste of Norway editors. Daytona describes herself as an “author, artist, and hostess,” apropos words for someone who creates such magnificent culinary delights. For 12 years, she shared her recipes on her popular Outside Oslo blog, with thousands of followers all over the world. She is the author of Modern Scandinavian Baking: A Cookbook of Sweets.
We will keep you posted on Daytona’s new ventures, as she continues as a writer and champion of Nordic ways with her newsletter The Heart & Huset, an intimate and engaging community designed to help you get the resources, recipes, and connections you need to live out your best Scandinavian-style life.
Daytona’s baked goods and desserts are no less than masterpieces, and at that, her recipe for fyrstekake needs no further introduction—it is truly a royal treat.
Fyrstekake, an all-time favorite Norwegian dessert
Daytona Danielsen, Seattle
In celebration of those special times we spend in the kitchen with those we love, connecting over a shared task and sitting down later to enjoy it together, I would like to share a recipe for fyrstekake, a classic Norwegian tart flavored richly with almond. Growing up eating it with my mom frequently, it remains one of my favorite Scandinavian desserts.
Fyrstekake is also known as Royal Cake or Prince’s Cake. Though it calls for only a handful of ingredients, the results are decadent and somewhat regal in their simplicity. As a classic dessert, it makes sense that many variations exist. Some are spiced with cardamom and other flavors, and some let the almond shine. This particular recipe resembles the one I grew up eating, and I love the soft, almost-toothsome texture of the filling with the crisp cookie-like crust.
This recipe gets its rich flavor mostly from the ground almonds, but also from the slightest touch of almond extract that I added. If you enjoy marzipan candy, you’ll love this dessert.
By Daytona Danielsen
Adapted from Norwegian Cakes and Cookies by Sverre Sætre
For the crust:
2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup powdered sugar
14 tbsps. cold unsalted butter cut into 3/4-inch cubes
For the filling:
1 3/4 cups slivered almonds
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp. butter
1 egg yolk
1 whole egg
1/4 cup whipping cream
For the topping:
1 egg yolk mixed with 1 tbsp. water
1. To make the crust, combine flour, powdered sugar, and butter in a food processor until crumbly (or cut ingredients together by hand). Add the egg and continue to process until the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap, cover it well, and refrigerate for at least two hours.
2. Grease an 8- or 9-inch tart pan with removable base. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8 inch thick. Place in the tart pan and work it in evenly in the crease and up the sides. Put the crust and the remaining dough back in the refrigerator for 30 minutes while you prepare the filling.
3. Preheat the oven to 335°.
4. Whirl the almonds in the food processor until fine, then add the sugar and pulse some more until combined. Melt the butter in a small bowl and pour it into the almond and sugar, along with the egg yolk, egg, and whipping cream. Process to blend, and then pour the filling into the prepared crust.
5. Remove the remaining dough from the fridge and roll it out on a lightly floured surface. Working quickly so that it doesn’t warm up too much and become difficult to work with, cut the dough into thin strips and arrange in a lattice or crisscross pattern on the top of the filling.
6. Mix the remaining egg yolk with a tablespoon of water and brush this over the top of the cake.
7. Bake about 40 minutes, depending on the size of your pan, until golden. Cool, then remove tart from pan.
All photos courtesy of Daytona Danielsen.
This article originally appeared in the April 15, 2022, issue of The Norwegian American.