The words are stuck. They just won’t come. I know it has been a while since I have posted. I can blame my computer crashing. That I keep saving the time for writing for tomorrow. That my brain lives in the world of to-do list’s and rarely switches to the rambling nature that fills this blog. Whatever the excuse, I am verbally constipated.
Currently writing is like a dear friend that lives far away. The one you love and think of often. The one you say, “I should call them” but you know that the longer you put that call off, the longer that call will be. There is after all, so much to catch up on. So what do you do? You wait. You wait for the hour of undistracted time that sadly never comes and you sit and miss your friend. The silly thing is that you only need 5 minutes, hell you can even leave a voicemail. You just need to sit. You just need to make the call.
I offer this blog as my attempt at making contact. I hope you will excuse me, this is not my recipe (thank you My Danish Kitchen) and the pictures are not of food, but I needed to call and I didn’t want to wait any longer. The recipe is for Dream Cake, a Danish Treat that is a love child of coffee cake and macaroons.
Over a year ago when I was doing my internship in Copenhagen, I asked everyone what I must try. Every Danish person said Dream Cake and then with a voice full of childhood memories they told me their favorite version. With years of experience backing their decisiveness, they shared the correct ratio of coconut or just how much vanilla you should taste in the cake. Lucky for me, each of them became so inspired by their memories that they baked me their version of dream cake.
Last week, I was thinking of my time in Copenhagen. A time when I could not keep the words from pouring out. My thesis, my blog, articles, journal entries, it didn’t matter what the format was or even if it was good, the words were uncontrollably flowing onto the page. It was a time I hold close to my heart. As I was thinking of this time, I was naturally thinking of dream cake. Lucky for me, last week was my friend’s birthday and birthdays deserve at least a voicemail with their cake.
Drømmekage (9-12 servings) (Recipe from My Danish Kitchen: Scandinavian Recipes in America)
For the dough:
75 gram butter (2.6 oz.)
1 deciliter milk (3.4 oz. or 1/2 cup)
125 gram all-purpose flour (4.4 oz.)
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs, at room temperature
125 gram sugar (4.4 oz.)
1 vanilla bean, seeded
1/4 teaspoon salt
For the topping:
150 gram butter (5.3 oz.)
250 gram brown sugar (8.8 oz.)
1/2 deciliter milk (1.7 oz. or 1/4 cup)
200 gram shredded unsweetened coconut (7 oz.)
Preheat oven to 195 degrees C (380 degrees F). Spray a 9 x 9 inch baking pan with baking spray. Add 1 tablespoon flour to pan, shake flour around pan to coat bottom and sides, discard excess flour, set pan aside.
In a small saucepan add butter and milk, warm over low heat until butter is melted, set aside.
Sift together flour and baking powder, set aside.
In a large mixing bowl add eggs and sugar, beat on high until mixture is pale yellow and very thick (5-10 minutes). Add vanilla beans and salt and beat until well incorporated. Add 1/2 of sifted flour mixture to eggs and, with a spatula, gently fold the flour into the eggs until smooth. Add 1/2 of butter mixture to eggs and gently fold in. Add remaining flour and then butter, folding it into the eggs. Pour dough into prepared pan and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into middle of cake comes out clean.
While the cake is baking, prepare the topping. Add butter, brown sugar and milk to a saucepan. Melt while stirring occasionally, bring to a boil and then add coconut, simmer for 1 minute longer. Remove pan from heat.
As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, turn the oven temperature up to 210 degrees C (410 degrees F). Add tablespoons of filling to the top of the cake and smooth it out a little. (Do not pour all of filling onto cake all at one time). When oven has reached the new temperature, place cake back into oven and bake for another 4-5 minutes. Remove cake from oven and allow to cool in the pan on a baking rack. Enjoy!