baking and reading

September 7, 2010

One morning recently, a good friend called saying she might come and visit with a common friend of ours during the afternoon. I decided to bake a cake I quite enjoy for its flavour first and then because it is so easy to prepare. Here is the recipe in case you want to try it :


For a round baking tray (middle size)

1 pack of puff pastry

200 gr (2 cups 1/4) of  ground almonds

2 eggs

1 cup 1/2 of sugar

1 cup of milk

1 tsp of cinamon

1 pinch of salt

Mix all these ingredients

Then roll out the pastry on the baking tray (use a fork to make a few holes on the pastry)

Spread the ingredients you prepared onto the pastry

Pre-heat the oven at 200/230 °C (400-450°F)

Cook for 25 minutes

Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving

This pie tastes even better if you bake it one day in advance.

Some of you may think my almond pie looks a bit “burnt”… Well, almost but not really. I can assure you it tasted delicious ! And why should it look like this ?? That’s the question. You see, I was reading. A specially dangerous chapter that kept me totally concentrated on the story. At the same time I vaguely smelled something just as dangerous coming from the kitchen 😉 “Oh ! mon gâteau” (my cake) ! I rushed to the kitchen, book in hand of course (in case I would forget it somewhere on the way…) and I saved the almond pie from a very hot oven. Then I went on reading waiting for my friends.

“Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow” by Peter Hoeg is the book I was reading with great interest and more as “le gâteau de Babette” (Babette’s cake) was in the oven and requesting immediate attention ! I could not have been further from my kitchen. In fact Smilla, the fascinating main character in this book, was secretly –  and dangerously –  going aboard a ship in the darkest night you can imagine.  She was persistent in doing her own investigation about a mystery death. The story takes place in Denmark (Copenhagen) and Greenland, two countries I don’t  read about enough and I thought this book would be a good opportunity. It was, definitely so. And much more than that! This reading just cut me off from my surroundings for a few days, so exciting was the story. It is not a recent book, I had heard and read about it but somehow had missed  it. Now it is done and I thorougly enjoyed its reading. I hope some of you did too or will do so soon !


8 Responses to “baking and reading”

  1. cindy said

    The film of the book was released in South Africa as ‘Smilla’s sense of snow’, a beautiful movie.
    Your cake looks very tasty.

  2. giiid said

    This cake looks delicious!! I would like to make one, but especially to eat one, – or a piece of one. 🙂

    Everyone here knows that book, of course. How fun that you mention Peter Hoeg right now, because his newest book will be in the shops (in Denmark)in 2 days, from 10 september.
    I don´t know if it has been translated yet, possibly not. At Facebook there is a fanpage of Peter Hoeg:

    • Hello again giiid and thanks! I will certainly not wait years before reading another book by Peter Hoeg. Have you read “The Quiet Girl” “? there was a lot of talk about it on the facebook page you mentioned.

  3. Carsten said

    Almond pie with snow! It looks good. Maybe worth trying some day.
    It seems as if we have a mutual preference for literature.
    I liked “Frøken Smillas fornemmelse for sne”, and read it back in ’92.
    I remember a peculiar coincidence. Smilla needs x-ray examination and this is made with equipment from “Svejsecentralen” – The Danish Welding Institute. That’s where I work.
    BTW, did you ever read Murakamis “The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle”?

    • Strange coincidence indeed. You must have recognized many places in Copenhagen and Denmark as you read this book. I thought of you and of giiid too as I was reading P. Hoeg´s story and wondered what you thought about it.
      No I have not read “The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle”. Is it a bit similar to “Kafka on the Shore” which I enjoyed immensely ? I read “Kafka”, “After Dark” and “South of the Border”.

  4. sartenada said

    The cake is looking so fine, that I nearly can feel its aroma here.

    Your reading seems very interesting. I must check if I can found it in Helsinki, in French, of course.

    Happy weekend!

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