Friesentorte is a North and East Friesland specialty. A combination of cake and tart, it is rich, creamy, absolutely delicious and now a popular treat throughout Northern Germany.
Made from Short Crust pastry, Puff Pastry, Whipping Cream and Plum Jam or Puree, often homemade, it is the calorie bomb "special occasion" cake that accompanies a Friesentee, (Frisian tea), Ceremony on Sundays and celebrations. Or coffee at a Kaffeeklatsch, a coffee morning or afternoon.
It is a reward worth waiting for after a bracing walk along the Friesland sea shore, and through the dunes battling a North Sea wind.
Despite its simplicity there are as many variations for Friesentorte as there are families in Friesland, but here is a very quick and easy recipe that uses some ready made ingredients. Although it is of course possible to make the basic ingredients yourself if you prefer.
FRIESENTORTE Frisian Cream Cake
1 lb Puff pastry
1/2 lb Shortcrust Pastry
1 Jar, (1 lb) Plum Jam or Puree
20 fluid oz Cream
(It is not necessary to be absolutely exact in your measurements)
If you have a baking spring form it does make your "building" work a bit easier, but it is also not difficult without.
Cut out four circles from baking paper, either to the shape of the springform or free hand.
Roll out the shortcrust pastry and cut to the size of the spring form if you have one, otherwise just make a circle from the pastry, prick with fork and place on a lightly greased, or baking paper covered baking tray.
A shortcrust pastry base makes the cake more stable than it would be with one made from puff pastry.
Preheat oven to just under 200C/400F/Gas 6 place shortcrust pastry circle in center and bake until golden brown. (Dark baking trays tend to cook pastry more quickly)
Cut out three same size circles from the puff pastry, place on baking paper
Prick with fork
When the shortcrust pastry has cooked, remove and turn temperature of oven up to 400F.
After it has reached the correct heat place the three puff pastry circles in oven and bake until risen and golden brown.
Allow the pastry bases to cool completely.
Whip the cream with a sugar and vanilla flavoring to taste until it is stiff.
If the cake is going to stand for sometime and is not all going to be eaten the same day, which does not usually happen, then it is best to add some melted gelatin to the cream while whipping, this will make sure it does not collapse
With a spring form you can build up the cake layer by layer inside it, starting with the shortcrust base, otherwise place the base on a plate and begin.
Spread one third of the Plum Jam or Puree on the shortcrust base, and one third on each of two puff pastry circles.
Top the plum filling on the discs equally with whipped cream.
Layer the two cream and plum covered puff pastry shells in layers on the shortcrust base
Finish with the third puff pastry shell and sprinkle this with confectioner's sugar to decorate.
Remove the spring form if you have used it, and your Friesentorte is ready to serve.
Various "extras" can be added to the plum mixture, for example crushed walnuts, a little rum or other alcohol, cinnamon, and sometimes both the top and sides of the cake are covered with another thick layer of whipped cream, and then decorated with additional half plums, caramelized or natural, and toasted almond slivers.
Guten Appetit!.....And enjoy your Friesentorte
Photos courtesy Lecker.de