You remember my post a little while back about how I am avoiding baking lots of small cakes. I also mentioned that I am trying to become a 50′s housewife in the sense that I aspire to have a regular supply of baked goods on my kitchen counter (and to wear adorable aprons while baking said items). I seem to be on track in my enjoyment and baking regular-sized cakes, especially ones that come as a challenge. When my friend, Aubree, asked me if I would create a Swedish Princess Cake for her 25th birthday, I happily agreed.
What I was NOT aware of was how much of a process creating said cake is. I began by Googling ‘Swedish Princess Cake’ and discovered the following things about Swedish Princess Cakes:
- They are traditionally green
- The construction of said cake is made up of 6 components
- If you do it well, it is beautiful and dome-shaped
- If you do not do it well, it looks fairly unappetizing
As someone who appreciates a good culinary challenge, and also as someone who aspires to greatness in her kitchen, I was determined to make the most beautiful princess cake the city of Bozeman had ever seen. As the birthday approached, I set to work on my time line, which went something like this:
Day 1 (Friday):
- Procure ingredients (of which included 2 cans of marzipan, a bottle of kirsch, sugar, butter, a vanilla bean, cream, strawberry jam, and eggs)
- Make kirsch sugar syrup (kirsch, sugar, water) and refrigerate
Day 2 (Saturday):
- Make vanilla pastry cream (eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla bean, gelatin, cornstarch) and refrigerate
- Color marzipan green, wrap and set aside
- Make Swiss butter cream frosting (egg whites, sugar, butter, vanilla)
Day 3 (Sunday):
- Make genoise cake-yellow sponge cake- (eggs, flour, sugar, vanilla)
- Whip cream for filling
Construction of cake, part 1 (still Sunday):
Once the genoise cake had cooled, I found an 8-inch bowl, which I lined with plastic wrap and began the upside-down construction of the cake. the first step was to cut the genoise into wedges to fill the dome part of the cake. With each cake layer, the kirsch sugar syrup would be brushed on each side to keep things moist. Once cake layer 1 was down, whipped cream filled the dome, then another layer of kirsch-brushed cake, followed by vanilla pastry cream, followed by more cake, followed by whipped cream and a generous layer of strawberry jam with one more layer of cake. The bowl of cake was then wrapped and refrigerated overnight to set.
Day 4 (Monday- Party Day!)/Construction of the cake, part 2:
This was the most nerve-wracking part of the whole process. If anything were to go wrong at this point, Aubree would not only have an ugly cake for her birthday, but one very grumpy party guest. So. I turned the cake over onto the cake pedestal- it did not fall or slump. The pastry cream was oozing out a little, but I went to work right away sealing all layers and cracks in with the swiss-buttercream frosting- which just happens to serve as a pretty fantastic mortar for sealing up cakes. Once the buttercream was smoothly shellacked onto the cake, it went back in the fridge to continue to set-up.
Four hours later, I was rolling out the light green marzipan for the finishing touches. Traditionally, Swedish Princess Cakes are adorned with green marzipan and a single marzipan rose on top. This being a spring birthday, and for a person who has an affinity for peas, I created a pea-like decor with small tendrils surrounding the base of the cake and some embellishment on the top.
I give all credit to the creation of this cake to Baking Obsession. I would not have even attempted this cake without the thorough directions, methodology and detailed diagram that was essential in the construction of such a cake.
I did not get a photo of the cake’s cross-section. But you can get an idea of what it might have looked like above. Just imagine as much deliciousness as you could possibly fit into a cake, and you’re almost there.