July 9, 2016

Fluffy sponge cake with balsamic strawberries



There is almost nothing that says summer as much as a simple, fluffy sponge cake with cream and strawberries. And while I do enjoy that as it is, in all its simplicity, I wanted to add something. And strawberries and balsamico is pretty much a match made in heaven, I know that since I made a cream soda with balsamic strawberries for a magazine not too long ago. It was honestly one of the best things ever, that I will make many times this summer.




Or let me call it "summer", so far at least. If you're from a nourthern country, you probably know what I mean by that. When I was at the First We Eat workshop in Barcelona in March, Patricia of Sabores y momentos asked me why I was so obsessed with checking my weather app all the time. I told her that where I live, we need to make the most out of the few sunny days we have, because it can literally be weeks until we see the sun again. And that the weather is definitely a topic of conversation in Sweden. She told me in her happiest voice "Well, that's not a problem here, it's almost always sunny!". Well, at least this cake sure makes it feel like it's sunny outside.





FLUFFY SPONGE CAKE 
WITH BALSAMIC STRAWBERRIES
yields one 24 cm (9.5 inch) cake, serves 6-8

This cake does not keep well in the fridge as the strawberries tend to get a little mushy after a while, so make sure to prepare the strawberries and cream topping right before serving!

Ingredients
For the sponge cake
150 g butter
1 cup (225 g) granulated sugar
3 medium eggs, at room temperature
1 cup (150 g) all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
zest from 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp milk


For the balsamic strawberries
300 g fresh strawberries
1 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tbsp balsamico
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
zest from 1/2 lemon

For the topping
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tsp granulated sugar
Fresh mint leaves


Directions
Sponge cake
1. Preheat oven to 175°C (350°F)
2. Grease a 24 cm (9-9.5-inch) cake pan with a removable bottom. Sprinkle pan with bread crumbs or flour, make sure you get some on the sides of the pan aswell.
3. Melt butter and let cool.
4. Beat the eggs and sugar until lighter in color and texture, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in the melted butter.
5. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl. Gently stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Add lemon zest and milk and stir until batter is smooth.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth top with a spatula.
7. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
8. Let cake cool for 10 minutes before sliding a knife around the edge and removing the sides of the pan. Let cool to room temperature.

Balsamic strawberries & topping
1. Hull the strawberries and cut them into thirds lengthwise. Place them in a bowl and toss with sugar, balsamico, salt, vanilla and lemon zest. Cover the bowl and let stand for 30 minutes until the berries release their juices. Toss every now and then.
2. Prick holes in the cake with a toothpick and spoon some of the juices from the berries on top of the cake.
3. Whip the cream with the sugar to soft peaks. Spread the whipped cream on top of the cake. Spoon strawberries on top and decorate with some mint leaves. Drizzle any leftover "juice" on top of the cake.
 




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June 14, 2016

Strawberry rhubarb pie with elderflower




Strawberry rhubarb pie is one of those classics that I absolutely adore. And that's exactly why I hesitated a bit before adding elderflowers to the mix. But I'm glad to say it turned out so well, with just a hint of elderflower flavor. Perfect.

I know it looks like this pie has a huge puddle in the bottom, but it doesn't, really. I was eager to photograph the inside and let it cool just 1 1/2 hours which is not enough to let it firm up completely.. I know, my bad. And it's definitely not soupy like many other strawberry rhubarb pies I've tried. I macerate the fruit and then cook the liquids before I add them back to the pie (don't want to lose any of that precious flavor!). I know it sounds like many steps to go through but I highly recommend trying it, to avoid a soggy pie bottom.

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May 12, 2016

Lomelinos pajer / Lomelino's pies



It's finally here!! 
My new baby is now out in the world (in Sweden), the pie book I've been working on for a while now. I'm so very excited about this one! It's filled to the brim with double crusted pies, galettes, crumbles, tarts, mini pies, pie pops, cream pies.. I'm also sharing my very best pie tricks, like how to make the very best pie crust, how to avoid a soggy bottom and how to make that beautiful lattice top. And of course, what to serve with your pies, vanilla ice cream, caramel ice cream, crème anglaise, whipped honey creme fraiche, how to make your own mascarpone cheese and much, much more. You can buy it from Bokus, Adlibris or your local book store.

If you make anything from it, make sure to tag your photos #lomelinospajer on Instagram so I can check it out!


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May 3, 2016

Mini princess cakes | Miniprinsesstårtor




Princess cake has been on my to-do list for a while now. Since last summer I think, but I never got around to making one. I've eaten so many slices of princess cake in my life and I figured it was high time to make my own. Princess cake is one of the most typical Swedish pastries, and I've been very into making Swedish pastries lately. I know there is always some debate as to whether a real princess cake should contain raspberry jam or not. Nowadays they usually always do, as far as I know.  I chose to go with raspberry cream instead of jam, because why not? Raspberries are delicious. As they're not really in season right now, I went for frozen ones.
And if I can, I always go for mini format. It does take a bit longer but aren't they adorable? Totally worth it in my opinion, to be able to serve individual little cakes for your guests.
And what's not to like? A light sponge, pastry cream, raspberry cream with a hint of lemon, more whipped cream and marzipan. They are actually lighter than you would think despite all that cream, and they aren't overly sweet. Delicious.

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April 19, 2016

Rhubarb crumble




The most difficult thing about putting this post together was coming up with a name for this... well, crumble I guess? But it isn't really a crumble either. It's like a hybrid of a crumble, a cake and a chewy cookie. Or is it a crisp? Can someone please tell me what the difference between a crisp and a crumble is? For me, a crumble has actual crumbles on top, whilst this batter is more like a runny cake batter... Whatever it is, the caramelized topping is crunchy and chewy and pairs incredibly well with the tart rhubarb underneath. I'm so happy the first rhubarb is finally popping out of the ground! Now I'm just waiting for the strawberries as well. 
If you've been following this blog for a while you probably know that I love pairing berries and rhubarb with cardamom. Ok, I love anything with cardamom. Really. And I love serving things with vanilla ice cream. All good.
I also finally got the chance to test my handcrafted pie server from Nershi woodworks. Isn't it just beautiful?

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March 23, 2016

Butterkaka - cinnamon bun cake with almond paste and vanilla custard




I've come to realize that the Swedish classics are grossly underestimated, in my book at least. I mean, the cinnamon bun and the semla are definitely on my top ten list of favorite pastries. Maybe even my top five list. So I'm kind of working my way through the classics and thoroughly enjoying it.
If you're a fan of cinnamon buns (and my guess is that you are), you will looove this recipe. It's exactly like cinnamon buns except filled with homemade almond paste (the classic recipe uses the "regular" cinnamon bun filling though) and vanilla custard.
And I know that everyone who ever made this recipe in Sweden makes a joke about it. 'Butter' means grumpy in Swedish. Tasting this will not make you grumpy. Quite the opposite. On the other hand, Swedish is kind of a funny language. We use the same word for 'married' as we do for 'poison' ('gift'). Strange. And yes, I am aware of the fact that 'kaka' means something completely different in certain languages.. In Swedish it simply means cookie or cake. Today's Swedish lesson. But I digress.

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