A Norwegian Royale Cake with a buttery crust and chewy almond filling. This cake was first sold in the 1860's! Served in thin slices with coffee or tea.

Serves 8-10

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 4 tsp. milk
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
  • 1 1/4 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 2 tbl. heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tsp. dark rum or vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place rack in the center of the oven.

To make the crust, pulse flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a food processor to mix. Add the butter and process until crumbs form with some pea-sized pieces. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Combine one egg yolk with the milk. with the food processor running, add the yolk mixture and process until the dough begins to clump together, 15-30 seconds. If the dough doesn't form, add milk one teaspoon at a time until desired consistency.

Place dough on a well-floured surface and form a ball. Wrap in waxed paper and chill about an hour.

Place the almonds in the food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add the confectioner's sugar, whipping cream, two egg whites, and rum. Pulse briefly to mix.

Reserve 1/2 dough and keep in refrigerator. Press the other half of the dough into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Spread the almond filling into the crust.

On a well-floured surface, roll the remaining dough to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut into strips about 3/4 inch wide. Place the strips in a lattice on top of the filling, pressing onto the sides. Mix the remaining egg yolk with one teaspoon water and brush onto the strips.

Bake 28-32 minutes or until a light golden brown. Cool on a wire cooling rack. Remove the side of the pan before serving.


Norwegian Kringla

Kringla makes the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee or warm cocoa. "Kringla" is the word for "8" in Norwegian, the traditional shape of these cake-like cookies. The dough can also be rolled into pretzel shapes. Spread the top lightly with butter or honey for a treat. 

Makes 6-7 dozen

  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 cup sour cream

Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

Beat the sugar and butter in the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer on medium speed until creamy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until mixed well, scraping down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low speed, add the buttermilk and sour cream and beat until blended. Slowly add the flour mixture until dough forms. Place the dough on a lightly-floured surface and shape into a ball. Wrap with waxed paper or plastic wrap and chill at least 2 hours.

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the oven rack in the center. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Roll rounded tablespoons of dough on a well-floured surface into pencil shapes about eight inches long. Shape into pretzel shapes or figure eights and place on baking sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes. Cool on wire racks.

Store at room temperature in a tightly sealed container.

Optional: brush cookies with milk and sprinkle with Swedish pearl sugar before baking.


Norwegian Krumkake

These buttery, fragile cookies melt in your mouth. You will need a krumkake iron to prepare them. Store them at room temperature and handle gently. Serve plain or fill with whipped cream.

Makes 30 cookies.

  • 3 large eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • Confectioner's sugar

Combine the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt in a medium bowl and beat until well blended. Add the flour and beat until smooth. Stir in the butter.

Heat a krumkake iron over medium-high heat until drops of water sizzle and bounce around when dropped on the iron. 

Drop one teaspoon of batter into the center of the iron and close. Bake 15 seconds and turn the iron. Continue cooking 10 seconds. Open the iron and lift out the cookie with a thin metal spatula. Immediately roll the cookie around the cone. Gently remove when cool.

If the cookies fall apart, they are not cooked enough. Cookies should be a pale color.

Note: these cookies are best the day they are made but will keep two days at room temperature. Store in an airtight container and use waxed paper between layers. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar before serving.

Editor's note: the above three recipes can be found in Pat Sinclair's Scandinavian Classic Desserts


Pickled Salt Herring (innlagt sild)

This dish is best if made several days to a month before serving.

  • 1 large salt herring fillet (about 1 lb.)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbl. chopped onion
  • 6 white peppercorns, crushed
  • 6 whole allspice, crushed

Soak herring overnight in cold water. The next day, bone and skin the herring. Cut into bite-sized pieces and place in a shallow dish. 

Mix the vinegar, sugar, onion, peppercorns, and allspice with two tablespoons water. Pour over fish. Cover and refrigerate for at least 48 hours or until ready to serve.

Makes about 4 servings.

Editor's note: the above recipe can be found in Tastes & Tales of Norway, by Siri Lise Doub