The Cakewich: the sandwich that looks like a cake!
This is not a joke dish. It is something people actually eat in Sweden on special occasions, where it’s called a Smorgåstårta. It’s also a good idea for people who don’t eat sugar, as they can have a birthday cake that is savoury! Smorgåstårta makes a fantastic centrepiece and is spectacular for kids’ parties, too.
This savoury ‘rainbow’ cake would be a great ‘carrier’ for leftovers. I’ve done it with traditional Scandinavian ingredients such as smoked salmon, fish roe, fish roe paste from Kalles and pickled cucumbers. But do use up whatever is in your fridge.
For the Cakewich Structure
800g cream cheese
1 loaf pre-sliced white bread, crusts removed
1 loaf pre-sliced brown bread, crusts removed
For the Fillings (Depending on how many layers you have)
1 cucumber, thinly sliced into rounds
500g packet smoked salmon, thinly sliced
2 ripe avocados, halved, stoned and sliced
For the Garnish
3 cold hard-boiled eggs, peeled and thinly sliced
A handful of cress or dill, washed and dried
(You could also add cooked peeled prawns, thinly sliced cheese, cold cuts, feathery dill sprigs, sliced radishes, thinly sliced deseeded red pepper or cod’s roe. Get creative!)
Star-shaped piping nozzle and a piping bag (optional)
Assemble your cakewich on your final serving plate, whether it’s a board, large plate, tray or cake stand. You don’t want to have to move it later and risk breaking your concoction.
For the cakewich structure, whip the cream cheese in a food processor until it is light and fluffy. Reserve 100g for the crumb coat and 200g for the top coat (spread on the outside of the constructed cakewich, which helps to ‘glue’ the cakewich together). Spread the white and brown bread slices on both sides with the remaining whipped cream cheese (you do not need to spread the bottom of the bread that will make up your base layer).
Create your base layer with some slices of white bread (cream cheese side up), fitted together tightly. Top with one of the filling ingredients. Do the next layer with brown bread, positioning the slices so that they overlap the white slices underneath, but facing the opposite direction. Top with another of the filling ingredients. Continue to build up your cakewich, alternating between white and brown bread and using a different filling for each layer. Finish with a layer of bread slices on top.
Once the layers are completed, use a rubber spatula to thinly spread the reserved 100g whipped cream cheese around the sides and top of the cakewich to make a crumb coat. Wrap the cakewich and plate/board/stand in cling film, then chill in the fridge for an hour or so to firm up.
Once the cakewich is chilled, spread the remaining 200g whipped cream cheese in an even layer around the cakewich sides and over the top, to create a top coat all over. Garnish the cakewich using any leftover filling ingredients, plus the thinly sliced boiled eggs, the cress and dill. If you like, you could pipe cream cheese rosettes around the edges using a star-shaped piping nozzle. Serve immediately, cut into slices.
A Few Tips:
Use a rubber spatula to spread the cream cheese on the bread. Processed bread is soft and difficult to butter when untoasted.
It’s easier to make a square or rectangular sandwich cake because of the shape of the bread, but for a more birthday-cake look you could make it round with the aid of a cake tin as a template.
Try to use bread slices of similar dimensions; it makes it easier to assemble, otherwise you will have to do a jigsaw of pieces, although you won’t see this once the cakewich is assembled and covered.
You could use mayonnaise instead of cream cheese if you want a lighter cake.
(*Recipe reproduced from Ms Marmite Lover's Secret Tea Party by Kerstin Rogers- Square Peg/ Random House, November 2014)
6 large apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 cup apple juice
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place eight 1-cup wide-mouth Mason jars on a large baking sheet.
To make the crust, pulse together the almond flour and salt in a food processor. Add the coconut oil and stevia and pulse until the mixture forms a ball. Transfer the dough to a piece of parchment paper and place in the freezer for 20 minutes.
To make the filling, place the apples, apple juice, lemon juice, arrowroot powder, and cinnamon in a large bowl, and toss to combine. Transfer the apples to the Mason jars so that each one is overfull. Divide the remaining juice from the bottom of the bowl between the jars.
Remove the dough from the freezer, place between 2 pieces of parchment paper generously dusted with almond flour, and roll out the dough 1/4 inch thick. Remove the top sheet of parchment. Using the top of a wide-mouth Mason jar, cut out 8 circles of dough and place one on top of each apple-filled Mason jar.
Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until the juices are bubbling and the crust is golden brown. Serve the tartlets hot out of the oven.
Coconut Whipped Cream
Makes 1 Cup Sweetness: Low
This dairy-free whipped cream recipe calls for full-fat canned coconut milk. The fat is what makes the recipe creamy and luscious; light coconut milk won’t work and results in a watery mess. Serve over Upside-Down Apple Tartlets (page 101) or Peach Cherry Crisp (page 98). See photo on page 100.
1 (13-ounce) can Thai Kitchen coconut milk
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 drops vanilla crème stevia
Pinch of sea salt
Place the can of coconut milk in the refrigerator at least 24 hours before making the whipped cream, so it is well chilled. Chill a metal bowl in the freezer for 15 minutes.
Take the coconut milk out of the refrigerator and remove the lid. Gently scoop out the coconut fat, placing it in the chilled bowl. Pour the remaining liquid into a glass jar and store in the refrigerator, saving it for another use.
Using a handheld blender, whip the coconut milk fat until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Whip in the honey, vanilla extract, stevia, and salt.
Use right away or store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.
(* Recipe reproduced with permission from Paleo Cooking from Elana’s Pantry, by Elana Amsterdam -Ten Speed Press, 2013- Photo by Leigh Beisch)