The Best of Danish Pastry Othello Layer Cake

As I wrote last time, the Danes like to give their cakes and pastries  names. This one is named after Giuseppe Verdis opera Othello fra 1887 based on  Shakespeare’s great tragedy Othello.  It’s served on special occasions and can be bought at any bakery in Denmark. You can also make it at home and although it is time consuming, it’s well worth it. Remember, when baking my recipes, I use Danish products and the results may not be the same elsewhere. Just keep trying with a little more or less flour. This cake is a Danish classic and tastes wonderful.

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Othello Layer Cake  serves 8-10

Macaroon cake: 7 oz. marzipan, 3½ oz. sugar, 3 egg whites

Layer cake:  2½ oz., butter, 3½ oz. sugar, 2 eggs, 3½ oz. flour, ½ tsp. baking powder

Vanilla Crème: 1 egg yolk, 1 tbsp. sugar, 1 thsp. flour, 10 oz. milk, 1 tsp. vanilla extract.

Cocoa glaze: 7 oz. confectioners sugar, 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa, warm water

Marzipan *  (best if it can be bought in sheets)   6 tbsp. strawberry jam and 6 oz. heavy whipping creme

Preheat oven 390°F.

To make macaroon cake,  trace a circle the same size as the pan that will be used to make the layer cake on a piece of parchment paper. I used an 8 inch pan. Set paper with circle aside.

Mix all ingredients to macaroon cake together until smooth. This takes time, so be patient and make sure there are no lumps. Place mixture into a plastic bag, cut off corner and squeeze dough onto circle on parchment paper. Bake 20 minutes and allow to cool.

Reduce heat to 350 °F.

To make layer cake, mix butter and sugar together and add eggs one at a time. Add flour and baking powder. Pour mixture into a buttered baking pan (8 inch). Bake 25-30  minutes.

To make vanilla Crème, beat egg yolk with sugar, flour and milk. Cook over low hear while beating the whole time until thick. Remove from heat and add vanilla extract; then cool, stirring occasionally.

To make  cocoa glaze, mix together confectioners sugar and cocoa. Add warm water a little by little until consistency is thick and flowing. Set aside.

To assemble, place the macaroon cake in the center of platter. Spread a layer of jam on the cake and then spread 3/4 of crème on top.. Place the layer cake on top of the crème. Spread cocoa glaze on top of the cake. Now spread a tin layer of cake crème on the sides of the cake. This will give the marzipan something to stick to. Cut the marzipan to fit your cake. If the cake is 4 inches high, cut the marzipan 4 inches wide. Measure the cake and if you have used an 8 inch pan, it should be 24-25 inches. Cut the marzipan to 25-26 inches in length.  Wrap the marzipan around the cake, pressing lightly to make it stick. If you can’t buy marzipan in strips or don’t want to use it, make a double portion of whipped cream and spread the sides with half of the whipped cream. Place the rest of the  whipped cream in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and decorate the edge between cocoa glaze and marzipan to cover any holes. Keep cake refrigerated until serving.

*If you can’t buy marzipan in sheets, roll a clump of marzipan out onto a work surface after sprinkling the surface with confectioners sugar.

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