Thu, Jan 6, 2011
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This festive Ring Tree Cake is a Norwegian and Danish cookie that is traditionally made for holidays and special occasions. It has a rich almond flavor that is complemented by a sweet powdered sugar glaze which is drizzled over the top.
In my family, we make one every year at Christmas. My mom also made one and packed it all the way to Hawaii for my wedding. I recently made one for my parents’ wedding anniversary. The ring cake lends itself well to birthdays and anniversaries because you can build it with as many rings as the number of years you are celebrating.
If you don’t have kransekake ring molds, you can make concentric circular paper patterns to shape and bake the rings. Decorate the ring cake using marzipan figurines, miniature flags, ribbons, and whatever else fits the occasion. I’m sure that it would even work to bake the dough in small chunks if you want the rich almond-flavored cookie without dealing with building the ring cake.
- 2 cups butter, softened
- 1 cup almond paste
- 2 cups sifted powdered sugar
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 4 egg yolks
- 5 cups flour
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 1 Tbsp milk or water, to consistency
- Cream the butter, almond paste, powdered sugar and almond extract.
- Then beat in the egg yolks.
- Add the flour gradually, mixing until the dough is very smooth.
- Make paper patterns in concentric circles (25 circles, each ¼” larger than the one before, starting at 1-inch diameter). Or use kransekake molds, lightly greased.
- Put the dough in a pastry bag or a cookie press.
- Press the dough into the molds or along the inside edge of the paper patterns.
- Chill the rings for 15 minutes.
- Place the filled molds or paper patterns on a cookie sheet and bake them at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until delicately browned.
- Cool the rings on a wire rack.
- Mix the powdered sugar, vanilla and milk. Drizzle the glaze in rounded wave-like patterns on each cooled cookie ring. Let the icing harden before stacking the rings into a tower.
- Place the largest ring on a plate and top it with the next largest ring.
- Continue stacking the rings until you have used all of them.
- You can use as many rings as you would like; it does not need to be 25 rings tall. Decorate the tower as desired.
- To serve, break the rings into large chunks, starting with the bottom ring. Leave the remaining smaller rings assembled in the tower until you are ready to serve them.
Purchase kransekake ring molds: Norpro Nonstick Kransekake Forms