Toscakaka is a traditional Swedish almond cake! Learn how to make this sweet treat and your taste buds will forever thank you.
Toscakaka is a Swedish cake made up of a sponge cake, caramelized almonds, and lots of sugar! This delicious cake is popular and available during many occasions (or “just because”).
It’s a decadent mix of sweet (caramel), crunchy (almonds), and moist (sponge cake) – once you have it with your afternoon coffee, you’ll want to make it a daily tradition!
I first tried toscakaka many years ago when I worked in Paris. A colleague that lived in Sweden brought it in for an office potluck. Needless to say, he was very popular that day!
What is toscakaka
Toscakaka (Swedish almond cake) is a moist and buttery sponge cake (that is sometimes infused with almond essence, lending it a distinctive aroma). It’s decadent caramelized almond topping is what truly identifies it as a Toscakaka. The combination of crunchy caramel and toasted almonds perfectly complements the sponge cake beneath.
You’ll often see toscakaka served during fika – a traditional Swedish coffee break – alongside a cup of coffee or tea.
Also known as Toscabit (in Swedish), Toscakaka finds its origins in Sweden. The cake derives its name from the caramelized almond topping called “Tosca” (which is why you may sometimes even hear it called a “Tosca cake”.
Some speculate that the cake was named after Puccini’s opera, Tosca. (Why? I don’t know.)
The cake is a staple in Swedish culinary traditions and is often served during special occasions and for festive celebrations.
- Butter, unsalted
- Granulated white sugar
- All-purpose flour (pastry flour works too)
- Baking powder
- Large eggs
- Lemon zest
- Milk (whole milk)
- Lemon juice
Caramel Almond (“tosca”) topping
- Flaked almonds
- Light brown sugar
- White sugar
- Unsalted butter
- Salt (kosher salt is an excellent option)
- All-purpose flour
- Whipping cream
How to make Toscakaka
Preheat the oven 325 degrees F. Prepare a 9-inch round cake tin by buttering and then lightly dusting with flour. (Alternatively, you can line the base of your cake dish with parchment paper.)
Making the sponge cake
In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Then add the milk and lemon juice to the melted butter. Set aside to cool.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the eggs and sugar until pale and thickened, about five minutes.
Prepare your dry ingredients separately in a medium bowl by sifting together the flour and baking powder. Add the lemon zest and mix gently. Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, gently fold about a third of the flour mixture into the egg mixture – be careful not to mix too hard otherwise you may mix away some of the air bubbles present in the egg mixture. Follow this by gently folding in about half the butter mixture (that was initially set aside), followed by another third of the flour mixture. Repeat once more to fold in the remaining butter mixture, and then flour mixture.
Pour your cake batter into the prepared cake tin, and bake in the centre of your oven for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven, but do not turn it off, instead set it to preheat for 365 degrees F.
Making the caramel almonds
Begin by melting the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat, add the flour and mix. Next, add the sugar, cream, salt, and flaked almonds, gently stir until thickened, about one to two minutes. (Don’t do this too early. You want the caramelized almond mixture to still be hot for the next stage!)
Making the toscakaka
Preheat the oven to 365 degrees F.
Gently spoon the still-hot caramel almond mixture over the top of the cake. Place the cake back into the centre of the oven, and bake for another 10-12 minutes, or until cooked through.
Allow the baked toscakaka to cool for 25-30 minutes before removing it from the cake tin. Cut with a warm knife, serve alongside cream or yogurt.
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Generally speaking, this caramel almond cake comes together without much fuss. Here are a few tips to help you make it the best it can be:
Don’t overmix the cake batter. Mixing batter can be more art than science, but it’s always better to stray on the side of safety. If you feel like you have a tendency to overmix batter, use a rubber spatula to mix instead of an electric mixer.
A springform pan will save you headache. One of the most painful things to watch as a dessert lover is a cake that you’ve lovingly baked break as you try to coax it out of its cake tin. Springform pans take away this issue to a large extent (don’t forget to butter the sides of the pan, and run a knife around the perimeter before removing it!).
Test the centre of the cake. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if your cake has cooked through. Even though the outside may be a lovely golden brown, the inside may still be a bit gooey. I use a toothpick to test that this isn’t the case!
While the classic Toscakaka recipe is a timeless favorite, variations of this caramel almond cake have emerged over time. Many popular variations incorporate flavors like cardamom or vanilla into the cake batter while others variations include a hint of citrus zest – such as lemon or orange – to create a refreshing twist.
My versions uses lemon zest for a touch of freshness (after all, who doesn’t like a little lemon zest?). An easy addition is adding a teaspoon of almond essence to the cake batter for that classic almond fragrance!
More cake recipes
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A good springform pan makes this Swedish cake recipe a breeze.
And that’s it, bestie. That’s everything you need to know to make Sweden’s Toscakaka. Have you ever tried a tosca cake before? Let me know in the comments below.Print