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Monthly Archives: August 2018

Recipe: Danish Baking – Custard Crowns (Spandauer)

August 31, 2018 | Leave a comment

Danish Baking – Custard Crowns (Spandauer)

You see these everywhere across the world – but make them at home and you’ll know the real taste. These are absolutely divine. Granted, it takes a bit of work – but freshly baked Danish pastries, well, there is nothing quite like it.

Ingredients

  • 1 portion of Danish Pastry dough see our blog
  • 1 portion of Remonce filling see blog
  • ¼ portion of pastry cream or raspberry or blueberry jam, if preferred (see blog)
  • 1 egg for brushing
  • 3 tbsp roughly chopped hazelnuts
  • 100 g icing sugar

Instructions

  • On a lightly floured surface, carefully roll out the dough and cut into 12–14 squares of around 10 x 10 cm each.
  • Place a generous teaspoon of remonce almond paste into the middle of each pastry square, then carefully fold each of the 4 corners in to meet in the middle, using the sticky remonce to hold the corners down. Use your thumb or a fork to secure the pastry. Place the pastries on the prepared baking sheets, then cover with cling film and set aside to rise for 20 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) Gas 6.
  • Brush the tops of each pastry with a little of the beaten egg mixture. Add a teaspoon of your preferred filling (pastry cream OR jam) into the centre of each square. Lastly, add a sprinkling of chopped toasted hazelnuts to the centre as well.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for around 10–15 minutes or until golden brown, then remove and allow to cool before decorating. You may need to bake these for longer – it really depends on your oven, but they need to be baked through. Please note there is likely to be some butter spillage – keep a tray to catch the spill during baking.
  • To make the icing, mix the icing sugar with
 1–2 tablespoons of hot water, adding more if needed. You are looking for the consistency of runny honey. Fill the piping/pastry bag and pipe a loose spiral of white icing/frosting around the edges of each cooled pastry (too soon and the icing will melt).

Tip:

  • You can make one batch of pastry dough and make two kinds of pastries – simply half this recipe to 6-7 Custard crowns and use the rest of the dough for your other choice. Please note you must NOT roll up the dough and re-roll out, this will ruin the layers.

Notes

Want the book? Get your hands on a signed copy of Bronte Aurell's Fika & Hygge right here.
Photo by Pete Cassidy - recipe here is a part extract from the book. Best get the best selling book for 90 delicious baking recipes from all over Scandinavia.

Recipes: Pastry cream, marzipan and more

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Danish baking re-uses a lot of the same components for pastry making, fine patisserie and general cakes. Here we have added a few of the main go-to recipes for:

  • Marzipan, homemade
  • Pastry cream / custard
  • Remonce filling

If you find this post but not what you were looking for, let us know – we will continue to add to this. Email iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk

Make your own 50% marzipan for baking

It’s super easy to make marzipan at home. This recipe works well for baking – it does contain raw egg white.

In a food processor, add 200g ground almonds and grind again until very fine (store bought is usually not that fine, so give it a bit more). Add 100g icing sugar and 100g caster sugar and a tsp of almond extract – and 30g egg white (1 medium egg). Blitz again until a paste forms. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate minimum 1 hour before using.

Pastry Cream (Kagecreme/marsan)

Making your own pastry cream is easy. Use it for anything from filing for cakes to baked in pastries. Use leftover pastry cream heated on top of cakes and crumbles, too.
The difference between custard and pastry cream is the amount of starch used (pastry cream is quite a lot thicker). Also, custard if often served runnier and warm, where as pastry cream is usually cold (but can be both). You can thin out pastry cream and heat if you want to use it on crumbles and other desserts.
Course: Baking
Cuisine: Scandinavian
Servings: 600 g
Author: Bronte Aurell

Ingredients

  • 500 ml whole milk
  • 1 vanilla pod/bean seeds scraped out
  • 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 30 g cornflour
  • a pinch of salt
  • 25 g butter

Instructions

  • In a saucepan, heat the milk with the scraped out seeds from the vanilla pod/bean. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar and add the cornflour. Whisk until well combined.
  • When the milk has just reached boiling point, take off the heat and pour one third into the egg mixture, whisking continuously. Once whisked through, pour the egg mixture back into the remaining hot milk. Return to the stove and bring to the boiling point, carefully. Whisk continuously as the mixture thickens, for just under a minute (this will remove the corn flour taste as well as thicken it), then remove from the heat and stir in the salt and butter.
  • Pour into a cold bowl and place a sheet of baking parchment on top to prevent the cream from forming a crust as it cools. Refrigerate before using. The mixture will keep well in the refrigerator for a few days.

Remonce Almond Paste

This filling is often used in pastries and cakes in Denmark. Also known as Lord Mayor’s Filling (Borgmester blanding), on account that it is used in a famous version of Kringle called Borgmesterkringle.
Course: Baking
Cuisine: Scandinavian
Servings: 300 g

Ingredients

  • 100 g marizpan – minimum 50% almond.
  • 100 g butter slightly softened
  • 100 g icing sugar
  • a bit of vanilla sugar or extract (few drops)

Instructions

  • Grate the marzipan and add to the food processor, mix in the rest. Mix well. Filling is ready to use.

Recipe: How to make REAL Danish pastry

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Danish pastry as we know it – layers of buttery yeast dough – came to Denmark in the 1850s with bakers from Austria. These bakers came to cover a long, nationwide baker strike – and in the process, taught the homegrown bakers a thing or two about pastry. Over time, the dough changed slightly – and became the Danish Pastry we know and love today.

In Denmark, Danish Pastry is actually known as Wienerbrød – literally: Vienna bread. In the rest of the world, it’s ‘Danish’.

At first, making your own Danish pastry can be a bit daunting – but it needs less folding than say a croissant dough, so in some ways it’s actually easier. It’s only folded three times – making it a total of 27 layers.

A word of warning: It will leak butter during baking, so be prepared for this and add a tray to cover spillage. But is it worth it? Oh yes, very much.

There are several components needed in Danish pastry making- all recipes are on this blog but not all in this blog post. We also advise you to invest in Bronte’s book Fika & Hygge which has all you need for Scandinavian baking – available on our website as well as on Amazon and all good booksellers. Recipes may vary slightly from here, but the basics are the same. Note that in Bronte’s books both general and US measures can be found.

We’ve borrowed some of the photos from the book here with credit to photographer Pete Cassidy.

Basic Danish Pastry Dough (Wienerbrød)

Ingredients

  • 25 g fresh yeast or 13g active dry yeast granules
  • 150 ml whole milk finger warm no more than 36c (97–98°F)
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 50 g butter softened
  • 350 g strong white bread flour plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg - plus 1 yolk

For the layers:

  • 350 g butter slightly softened (not too soft)
  • 25 g plain flour.
  • a baking sheet lined

Instructions

  • If you are using fresh yeast, add the yeast and whole milk to a stand mixer with a dough hook attached. Mix until the yeast has dissolved.
  • If using active yeast granules, pour the milk into a bowl, sprinkle over the yeast and whisk together. Cover with clingfilm/plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for about 15 minutes to activate and become frothy and bubbly.
  • Pour into the mixer with the dough hook attached.
  • Stir in the sugar and softened butter, then mix the flour with the salt and start to add, bit by bit. Add the egg halfway through along with the remaining flour. Keep mixing with the dough hook for a good 5 minutes. The resulting dough should still be a little bit sticky.
  • Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave to rise for an hour or until doubled in size.
  • Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead through, adding more flour as needed until you have a stretchy, workable dough and then roll the dough out into a big square 35 x 35 cm.
  • For the filling, mix the butter with the flour into a just mouldable ball using your hands. It’s important this mixture ends up being a similar consistency and workability to the dough – this will make it easier to roll. If your hands are too warm, use a rolling pin and beat the butter flat between two sheets of baking parchment. Flatten the butter out to a square around 25 x 25 cm, then place this butter square onto your dough at a 45 degree angle so that the dough corners can fold back in to cover the butter.
  • Carefully fold the dough corners over the butter until you have completely enclosed it – a bit like making an envelope! Dust with flour and very carefully roll out the package to a rectangle around 30 cm x 50 cm, then fold the layers the short way twice so you end up with a rectangle approx 30 x 15 cm (3 layers with butter). It is important that you roll carefully so that the butter stays inside the pastry package at all times.
  • Place the dough on the prepared baking
sheet, cover with clingfilm and chill for 15 minutes in the refrigerator. This will help the butter chill so you can keep working it.
  • Repeat the folding process: roll to a rectangle and fold back on itself – you now have 9 layers of butter. Again, rest the dough in the fridge for 15 minutes, then repeat the rolling process again so you end
up with yet another rectangle in 3 folds with 27 layers of butter in total. After a final rest in the refrigerator, your pastry is now ready to shape into whatever pastry you want to bake.
  • At any stage during the making of Danish pastries, if your hands or the dough get too warm, step back and cool things down a bit, as this can spoil your end result.
  • Danish Pastry baking time varies depending on your pastry size and weather you are making a kringle, Kagemand (Birthday ‘Cake man’) or individual pastries – but as with puff pasty, baking it through is essential as nobody likes a soggy bottom bit of the pastry. Usually 200C (400F), Gas Mark 6 works – but if it is getting too brown too quickly, turn down a bit and/or cover with foil.

Recipe: Raspberry Slices/Squares (Hindbærsnitter)

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Raspberry Slices (Hindbærsnitter)

These are a favourite from the Danish bakeries. A simple treat to bake, the only tricky bit is the cutting of the cooled down biscuits – but practise makes perfect.
Vary the fillings as you prefer – and reduce icing if you prefer not too much topping.
The Danes love a nice piece of cake or biscuit with their coffee. This biscuit/cake is called Hindbærsnitter in Danish and literally translated this means Raspberry Slices.
These are very simple to make – and you can make them fancy or basic.
It’s basically two pieces of sweet short crust pastry, baked, then layers with raspberry. Topped with a nice layer of white icing – and then whatever you fancy on top (we like freeze dried raspberries, but the traditional recipe called for hundreds-and-thousands).
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time1 hr 12 mins
Course: Fika
Cuisine: Danish
Servings: 14 slices
Author: Bronte Aurell

Ingredients

  • 350 g plain flour
  • 200 g butter cold
  • 125 g icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar or seeds from one vanilla pod
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 200 g raspberry jam (I often add mashed raspberries to mine to make the result a bit more tart)
  • 250 g icing sugar

Toppings of your choice

  • chopped nuts, freeze dried raspberries, hundreds-and-thousands

Instructions

  • In a food processor, add the cubed cold butter and flour and sugar. Blitz a few times to start the mixing.
  • Add the egg, vanilla and salt and blitz again until the dough starts forming. It’s done as soon as it is smooth and holds together.
  • Pop the dough in a plastic bag in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest before rolling out.
  • On a floured surface, cut the dough in half and roll out each piece on a sheet of baking paper to approx. 30 x 30cm. Transfer the pastry and baking sheet to a baking tray.
  • Pop both trays in the fridge again for 10-15 minutes.
  • Turn the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4
  • Prick holes in the dough using a fork to prevent the dough from rising or misshaping during baking. Bake until golden (10-12 minutes, depending in your oven), then remove from the oven and leave to cool for just a few minutes.
  • Meanwhile, prepare your icing: Add the icing sugar to a bowl and add 2-4 tablespoons of hot water – you may need more water than this, but start with two. Stir, adding more water if needed, until you have a thick icing with the texture of syrup (i.e. not too runny).
  • On the still slightly warm pastry, add the jam and spread carefully and evenly all over one fo the pieces. Add the second pastry on top so it lines up (you may need to use the baking tray to guide it on so it does not break – this bit is tricky).
  • Carefully, using a spatula, smear the icing across the top. If your icing is too thick, it won’t work – and too runny, it will spill everywhere, so test a little corner first and adjust accordingly.
  • As soon as you have spread your icing, add your toppings.
  • Using a very sharp knife, cut into 12-16 pieces. You may find it easier to cut it once it has all cooled down and the icing has set. Although some swear by cutting when hot, we do find it easier to do when cold, using a good knife.Carefully, using a spatula, smear the icing across the large cake. If your icing is too thick, it wont work - and too runny, it will spill everywhere, so test a little corner first and adjust accordingly.

Swedish Princess Cake: 7 Random Facts

August 24, 2018 | Leave a comment

7 Random Facts About Swedish Princess Cake

1. 70% of all cakes sold from Swedish pastry shops are princess cakes in some shape or forms. About half a million are sold each year. 

2. Since 2004 the last week of September has been dedicated to the cake – yep – a whole week where you can indulge (although maybe best not to, not every day!)

3. Marlene Dietrich once warned against men who don’t enjoy cake (and food in general) – she deemed them ‘lousy lovers’.

4. The cake came about in the 1930s when the home economics teacher of the three Swedish princesses published her cookbook, named ‘the Princesses’ Cookbook’. The book contained a recipe for a green cake that was their favourite and it quickly became known as the princess cake instead. 

5. Sometimes you’ll see the princess cake in different colours. Traditionalists insists that the real deal has to be green – other’s say it doesn’t matter. Some places it will be called Opera torte if it is pink, Carl Gustaf torte if it is yellow, and any other colour simply called Prince torte. We don’t mind – they’re all delicious.

6. To jam – or not to jam? We like raspberry jam in ours – but this is a fairly new addition, it seems. We also like adding fresh raspberries in season. Traditional or not – it goes so, so well with the luscious vanilla cream and sweet marzipan.

7. In 2016, someone thought it would be interesting to see what happened if you cross a princess cake with the Swedish semla – the marzipan cream bun they eat for pancake day. We tried it – it was delicious. Like a mini cake, but all to yourself. 

Recommended products

    Dr Oetker Kagecreme Vanilje – Instant Vanilla Creme 3x85g
    £3.09
    Odense Marsipanlock – Marzipan Cake Cover 200g
    £5.59
    Karen Volf Lagkagebunde – Cake Sponges 3-pack
    £2.99

The Law of Jante – explained

August 16, 2018 | Leave a comment

 

The Law of Jante explained

Our Bronte writes quite a bit, not only cookbooks. In her book Nørth you can find lots of articles about Scandinavian life in general, including how we live, love, dress, dream and why our walls are always white. North can be bought here and of course also on Amazon.

This article is similar to one in Nørth (but not the same).

The Law of Jante
Lately, in the UK media, people have been asking themselves if this Law of Jante that exists across Scandinavia is the secret to living in a harmonious and happy society. Clearly, this set of cultural and society rules are a little more complex than simply looking at them and assessing whether they would fit elsewhere. To understand how the Scandinavian society works – and why – we need to go a bit deeper.

The Laws of Jante go back to a fictional book by the Norwegian writer Axel Sandemose. In his brilliant book from 1933 called A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks, he writes about the Danish town called Jante and the unwritten social code that defines everything in it. This novel describes the author’s alter ego, Espen, a sailor who sets about discovering himself through his childhood in a town. In fact, what Sandemose really did was document this social code that was present all over Denmark and Norway and to an extent Sweden, too. Across all of Scandinavia, this peculiar set of ‘laws’ or rules exists. Not mentioned, but always there, silently enforced by everybody in unison. These are known as ‘The Laws of Jante’:

The Ten Rules of Jante
1. Don’t think you are anything special.
2. Don’t think you are as good as we are.
3. Don’t think you are smarter than we are.
4. Don’t convince yourself that you are better than we are.
5. Don’t think you know more than we do.
6. Don’t think you are more important than we are.
7. Don’t think you are good at anything.
8. Don’t laugh at us.
9. Don’t think anyone cares about you.
10. Don’t think you can teach us anything.

Janteloven (the Laws of Jante) aren’t that unlike most countries’ cultural codes that silently ensure some sort of peace and common ground is upheld. However, because the laws were actually formalized by Sandemose, these cultural values became much starker and obvious when seen in print.

To understand how they are applied so strongly in Scandinavia, you need to look at our general culture: Scandinavians love being equal in everything – from what we do in our work to how we like to live in our homes. Nobody is to have too much more – or less – than everyone else. We like having the same car as the neighbours, we like earning similar salaries. We like not having a huge class divide –it makes us feel like the world is a fairer place when things are shared between us.

It goes back and touches a bit on the concept of Lagom, too – from the old Norse word meaning ‘Laget om’: around the group. We share what we have so that there is enough for everyone and this creates a balance between everybody. It means we are all sort of on a level playing field and it makes us content in our daily lives. It is how we preserve harmony and social stability, to an extent. It has existed for many years, even before it was written down – and can be found in old sayings such as the Swedish proverb: ‘Noble deeds are done in silence’, for example.

Many people, when they first hear about it, think the Law of Jante is something that is consciously applied. We do not, however, have Jante-enforcement officers hanging around street corners, trying to catch people out who are getting too big for their boots. The reality is much more subtle: it stirs. It sits inside every family, every work place, every school, every person. It is engrained in us from a young age – to a lesser or bigger extent. It is simply part of the Scandinavian way of life – and most people don’t spend time questioning its existence.

The Law of Jante is not so much about people not wanting to see you drive down the high street in your new fancy Aston Martin, though. Scandinavians can absolutely appreciate someone’s good fortune. Instead, it is much more about making sure Benny Hansson down the road doesn’t feel bad that he doesn’t have an Aston Martin. The first would be simple envy, but it goes deeper than that: By stepping outside the social norms we have created, the invisible barriers that define our sociality, then you make Benny Hansson feel bad for not buying an Aston Martin. You break the group, you break the rules and if we’re all going to live together in harmony, we need to consider eachother’s feelings. And thus, the Law of Jante is reinforced. By the way, you see very, very few flashy cars in Scandinavia.

It is different to Tall Poppy Syndrome in that the latter is all about knocking the poppy down, stop him being too big for his shoes – whereas The Law of Jante is still about the group and not making others look bad. It’s not about you, you know.

When you look at how the Law of Jante is applied across cultural norms in Scandinavia, it is perhaps also easier to see how many democratic social policies have been easily accepted. It is not because of you; it is because of others around you: The greater good, all of us and our collective social happiness. Enough to go around for us all – and we can all live happily ever after.

Things are changing, however, as the world gets smaller and our cultural norms are shifting slightly with the influence of the more capitalist mindset of the have-it-all and the look-at-me-how-great-I-am culture. We’re all a bit more bling and we are brave enough to stand out more. The Millenials are changing the rules faster than many generations before them – and with every me-generation that has followed, the rules are being blurred more and more. In the big cities, the laws of Jante are often now seen as a bit of a myth. People who have built successful businesses are ok to talk about it now and, by and large, being successful is ok (as long as you don’t claim all the praise for yourself). As long as you share your new-found status and wealth with society, you are fine to have it.

Indeed, you can easily still spot Janteloven still in use in everyday conversation with Scandinavians from any of the countries. If a Scandinavian person is singled out for doing a really good job, they will immediately say it was only possible because of their team and dismiss personal efforts. Thinking of running for class rep? Wait for someone to nominate you. Just hit a number one in the charts with your new song? You only got there because people bought the record. It is never just about you, it is always about us.

You are free to do anything you want and can in Scandinavia – as long as you don’t appear different to any of us and stand out. Ever. And perhaps forget about that new shiny Aston Martin for now until you understand the social rules. Because if you over step these rules, well, then don’t think you can come here and teach us anything. Do you think you’re better than us? You’re not. Don’t think you know more than we do… and so it continues.

Bronte Aurell

Photo taken from North: How to live Scandinavian by Bronte Aurell, photo by Anna Jacobsen.

Recipe: Prinsesstårta – Swedish Princess Cake

August 2, 2018 | Leave a comment

Prinsesstårta - Swedish Princess Cake

By popular demand, we are now posting the princess cake recipe from Bronte’s book Fika & Hygge – with a few added hints and tips for making the perfect cake. It’s not the easiest cake in the world to make, let’s be honest. But you can do it! You just need some patience and a bit of guidance… And soon you’ll have the perfect Fika cake for your afternoon tea party – and what a beautiful centre piece it is on the table. The cake stems from the royal household in Sweden. Back in the 1940’s when the 3 princesses were young, the Home Economist was teaching them how to cook and bake. This cake was called Green Cake and was published in the book (The 3 Princesses’ cookbook) as The Green Cake but eventually it earned the name Princess Cake as popularity grew – for obvious reasons. 
There are a few secrets to making a good Princess cake – the first is to get the ratio right of base, cream and pastry cream and marzipan. Too much of either and it is just a bit sickly. The second thing is perfecting the marzipan – it is tricky. It may take a few attempts to be able to pull the marzipan around soft whipped cream without making a mess of it – here, patience, cold clean fingers and perseverance is key. We’ve added some cheat’s steps along the way if you want to make things easier for yourself. In fact, lots of people use a few cheat steps along the way - and we think this is perfectly fine. If you use all the cheat’s steps, you can actually whip up a princess cake in 15 minutes from start to finish – and one that still tastes good and will look great. 
The original recipe can be found in the book Fika & Hygge, by Bronte Aurell, published by Ryland Peters and Small, photography by Peter Cassidy.
Author: Bronte Aurell

Ingredients

You need:

  • 3 layer cake bases
  • 1 portion pastry cream around 600g
  • 600 ml whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 150 g raspberry jam
  • 200 g green marzipan lid
  • pink and green modelling icing for flowers and leaves decorations
  • Piping bag spatula, cake stand.
  • Tip: Depending on your schedule you might find it best to make the pastry cream first so it can cool and have time to set whilst you get on with the cake layers - but this is up to you.

Layer Cake Bases

    In our book we do not use baking powder – which is a genoise sponge – but if you are a little unsure add the mentioned 1 tsp baking powder and your rise is pretty much guaranteed. For more experienced bakers, try without (and you avoid the baking powder slight aftertaste and get a lighter result).

    • 25 g butter melted and set aside
    • 4 medium eggs
    • 120 g caster sugar
    • 120 g plain flour
    • optional 1 tsp baking powder
    • a pinch of salt
    • 1 tsp vanilla sugar or vanilla extract or seeds from ½ pod
    • 3 baking sheets lined with non-stick baking paper (and ideally a few puffs of non-stick spray).

    Pastry Cream

    • Makes 600g gram approx.
    • 500 ml whole milk
    • 1 vanilla pod seeds scraped out
    • 1 whole egg plus one egg yolk
    • 100 g caster sugar
    • 30 g cornflour
    • Pinch of salt
    • 25 g butter

    Make your own marzipan:

    • 200 g finely ground almonds use ground almonds, then re-grind them a few ties to make them extra fine.
    • 100 g granulated sugar
    • 100 g icing sugar
    • 1 tsp almond extract
    • 1 medium pasteurised egg white
    • green food gel

    Instructions

    • Pre-heat the oven to 180C, 350F, Gas 4
    • In a stand mixer with the whisk attached, beat the egg and sugar on high until you reach ribbon stage. This means when you can see the traces of the mixture when you most the whisk through it. It will take a good 4-5 minutes to reach this stage and it’s crucial – especially if you are not using baking powder, this is your only opportunity to get air into the mixture.
    • Using a 20cm plate, draw 3 circles on your baking paper. Set aside.
    • Combine the flour, salt and baking powder if using. Sift this into the egg mixture and very carefully fold to combine, using a figure of eight, until all the flour is incorporated. Be very gentle at this stage, but thorough. Pour the cooled, melted butter down the side of the bowl at the end and give a final few folds to incorporate it.
    • Divide the mixture evenly between the 3 circles and gently use your spatulas to guide to the drawn edge.
    • Bake in the oven for 5-8 minutes or until baked through and lightly browned.  Allow to cool down. To remove from the baking paper, if it sticks, wet your hands and allow to damped the underside of the baking paper, this release the cakes.
    • Trim any edges so you end up with 3 perfectly round and even sized bases.
    • Tip: You can use 3 x 20cm baking tins if you have.
    • Cheat’s tip: Use ready bought layers – these from Karen Volf are brilliant. Comes with 3 layers and are ready to use. They are light and not too sweet – a really good option.

    Vanilla Cream Patisserie

    • In a saucepan, heat the milk with the vanilla seeds.
    • In a separate bowl, using a mixer, whisk the eggs, sugar and corn flour.
    • When the milk reaches just boiling point, take it off the heat and pour 1/3 into the egg mixture, whisking continuously.
    • Pour the egg mixture back into the hot milk, return to the stove and bring to the boil whilst whisking. Whisk continuously as the mixture thickens and keep on boil for just under a minute (this removes the cornflour taste).
    • Pour into a cold bowl and leave to cool and set for several hours in the fridge. To avoid a ‘crust’ forming on top, place clingfilm straight on to the cream, covering the entire surface.
    • Cheat’s tip: Use an instant cream mix – we like this one from Dr. Oetker - just mix one sachet with 500ml whole milk, whisk for 1 minute and leave to set in the fridge. It has a nice vanilla taste and does not taste powdery – this is a great pastry cream alternative. You can also use this one for baking.

    Green Marzipan Lid

    • Here’s the admission: I usually buy green marzipan. Why? Because it’s easy and smooth and it’s ready to use. You can get one that fits a 20-cm cake here – Odense Green Marzipan Lid.
      Buy a covering marzipan from the supermarket and colour it green (should be minimum 25% almonds). To colour the marzipan, you must use a gel colour NOT a liquid green food colouring. If you use a green liquid colour, your marzipan will get sticky and hard to work with - and you will have to add a lot of extra icing sugar to make it workable.
    • Place all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until you have a smooth marzipan. Roll the mixture into a ball and wrap tightly with cling film. Chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour before using.
    • Because this marzipan contains egg white, use within a day.

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