For Swedish midsummer, celebrated during the longest day of summer, the afternoon is not complete without a strawberry cake to reward yourself for all the hard work of dancing and singing. Serve this cake directly after your midsummer lunch, or take a break and come back to your cake after a dance around the maypole!
Strawberry Cake (jordgubbstårta)
Serves 10 to 12
Butter, for pan
Flour, for pan
1 cup sugar
11/4 cups cake all-purpose flour
11/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 large eggs (2 whole, 3 separated),
6 tablespoons unsalted butter,
melted and cooled
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 egg yolk, pasteurized if salmonella is an issue in your area
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup whipping cream
8 ounces fresh strawberries, washed, dried, hulled, and thinly sliced
Whipped cream filling
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon table salt
2 cups whipping cream
8 ounces fresh strawberries, washed, dried, stemmed, and halved
Sprig of fresh mint
For the cake
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat the oven
Grease a 9-inch springform pan, line with parchment paper, grease parchment, and flour pan. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the sugar. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, and remaining sugar together in a large bowl. Add the 2 whole eggs and 3 yolks (reserving whites), melted butter, water, and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
Using a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the remaining 3 egg whites on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium-high and whip whites to soft, billowy mounds, about 1 minute. Gradually add reserved 3 tablespoons sugar and whip until glossy, soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir 1/3 of the whites into batter to lighten; then gently fold the remaining whites into the batter until no white streaks remain.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan, discarding parchment, and let cool completely on rack, about 2 hours.
For the filling
Whisk the egg yolk, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract together until thick and creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Using a hand mixer, whip the cream until it forms soft peaks. Gently fold the whipped cream into the egg and sugar mixture.
For the whipped cream frosting
Using a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and salt at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Reduce the speed to low and add the heavy cream in a slow, steady stream; when almost fully combined, increase speed to medium-high and beat until mixture holds stiff peaks, 2 to 21/2 minutes more, scraping bowl as needed.
To assemble and serve
Using a large serrated knife, cut the cake in half horizontally. Place the bottom layer on a serving platter or cardboard round. Spread the filling over the bottom layer. Crush the sliced strawberries lightly with a spatula and place them on top of the filling. Place the second cake layer on top.
Using an offset spatula, spread a layer of the frosting on the top of the cake. Transfer the remaining frosting to a pastry bag fitted with a star nozzle and pipe carefully around the edge of the cake in an up-and-down motion until the sides are completely covered. If you do not own a pastry bag, simply spread the frosting evenly over the top and sides of the cake.
Decorate the top of the cake with the halved strawberries and a sprig of mint. Refrigerate for several hours. Cut into slices and serve.
Swedish midsummer song Little Frogs (Små grodorna)
Små grodorna Små grodorna, små grodorna, är lustiga att se. Små grodorna, små grodorna, är lustiga att se. Ej öron, ej öron, ej svansar hava de. Ej öron, ej öron, ej svansar hava de. Kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack-ack-ack. Kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack-ack-ack. Kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack-ack-ack. Kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack, kouack-ack-ack-ack-ack. Ej mössor, ej mössor, ej byxor hava de. Ej mössor, ej mössor, ej byxor hava de.
Little Frogs Little frogs, little frogs are funny to see. Little frogs, little frogs are funny to see. No ears, no ears, no tails have they. No ears, no ears, no tails have they. Qu-ack-ack-ack, qu-ack-ack-ack, Qu-ack-ack-ack-ack-kaa, Qu-ack-ack-ack, qu-ack-ack-ack, Qu-ack-ack-ack-ack-kaa! Qu-ack-ack-ack, qu-ack-ack-ack, Qu-ack-ack-ack-ack-kaa, Qu-ack-ack-ack, qu-ack-ack-ack, Qu-ack-ack-ack-ack-kaa! No hats, no hats, no pants have they. No hats, no hats, no pants have they.