This semester has come to an end and summer time is coming! The past few weeks have been a rollercoaster, but finally I have done my last project for this semester and did a fun final presentation with my group mates. Yay! Super duper great experience working with you guys! Thanks Ayako, William, and Gitte!
If you follow me on Path, you'll know that now I have more time to spend for my hobbies : cooking and baking! It was a three-days straight baking each day and my life hasn't been so fulfilling.
But before coming to the nice things, I want to share the struggle of cooking and baking in Sweden (no kidding).
First, the language barrier.
It was super hard at first to be familiar with all of the ingridients name. Well for an easy example, if you are looking for best place to buy chicken in Sweden, look for : Kyckling. But if you are looking for a bike, look for : Cyckling. Well of course you don't want to cook a bike (or do you?), so don't make mistakes (sorry for the cheap jokes).
Second, the electric stove.
Almost all of Indonesians still use gas stove instead of electric one. It takes sooooo long for electric stove to be properly heated (and to cool down). It even took me some time to get used to it until I don't burn my sunny side up regularly. Even worse, in the first two months in Sweden, I think I burnt 5 or more batches of cakes since I don't know how to use the electric oven. Other batches weren't burnt, but sunk. On the next months, I almost quit baking for a while and cook more often. I have been asking my friends who are good at baking, and finally got some very good tips from my dear friend Vella who studied at Le Cordon Bleu Tokyo :D
Third, the measurement.
While the US measurement use cups, and other countries use grams, Sweden use dl (as in deciliter). Okay I really need to ask this question : WHY?
And then it came to my realization that I have always been using US measurement in Indonesia, while the measurement cup I bought in IKEA in Sweden is using dl as a substitution for cups (even though they look almost the same but they aren't). You know baking is like chemistry experiment. It needs a precise measurements for each ingredient so then I knew what was wrong with my burnt batches of cakes. None of them had the proper measurement!
So then some day on the site where I was working on my architectural studio (Ringön, Gothenburg), one of my classmate, Nike brought an amazing and delicious carrot cake with the perfect moist. I asked her for the recipe and it was in Swedish measurement. I tried it out, and it worked like magic! The cake was the best one I baked since I came here.
Now every time I google for a recipe, I always look for a Swedish recipe to match the measurement cups I have. If you have seen me posting some cakes on my instagram stories and path, this is a simple recipe I have been using and I made some alterations for other flavours.
Sockerkaka (Swedish Sugar Cake)
75 gr Unsalted butter
1 dl 3% fat milk
2 dl caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla sugar
3 dl all purpose flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
A. Preheat oven with 175C - top and bottom heat (takes 10-15 mins).
B. Melt butter, let cool for a bit, mix with milk. Set aside for a while.
C. Whisk / mix eggs and sugar until pale and smooth. Mix in flour, vanilla, and baking sugar, then pour in the B mixture (milk and butter).
D. Pour into a butter coated (+ breadcrumbs / +flour) non-stick baking pan. Make sure to leave room for the cake to rise. Try to keep it under 1/2 of the pan.
E. Bake for 35 minutes until it is golden brown and the batter doesn't stick to a stick when you poke it.
F. Voila! Serve with ice cream and your favorite berries!
The twist : I use the basic sockerkaka recipe for making the alteration. For example :
1. Marble cake
Take one scoop of the batter, mix with cocoa powder. With a spoon and a stick, draw the marble using the chocolate batter in the white batter before baking.
2. Banana cake
Add mashed banana into the mixture (1 very ripe banana is enough).
3. Chocolate cake
Use only 2.5 dl of flour, and add 0.5 dl of cocoa powder into the mixture.
4. Strawberry cake
Add two tablespoons of strawberry jam into the mixture, reduce the milk to one tablespoon.
There you go! 5 different recipes in one!
Please let me know if you have tried these recipes and tell me if it works for you!
Have a very fun summer!