Happy Birthday, Karate Kid!


Today it is the Karate Kid’s birthday and my heart floweth over! He is turning into a fine young man. Slightly taller than his mother, handsome, intelligent, funny and sweet. I am very proud!

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He will be treated to a shopping spree after school, and then dinner at Hard Rock Café in Copenhagen, which is one of his fav restaurants. And cake, of course! There has to be cake! Birthday cake is mandatory in this household, and when asked what cake he wanted me to bake, he said “Suksessterte” (Success Tart, directly translated), and so Suksessterte was made and served for breakfast. (Yes, breakfast. Hey, it’s his birthday!)

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After a fair bit of googling, I am starting to think this cake is Norwegian/Swedish, and that weirds me out as almonds are imported. Anyhow, this cake is very common in Norway and you will find it at many occasions. Super easy to make. So here is my recipe for Success Tart (or, as I call it: “The super yummy, flat, yellow one”):

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Success Tart (Suksessterte)

Almonds Meringue base

  • 4 egg whites
  • 150 grams icing sugar
  • 150 grams almonds

Line with parchment paper, and butter a 24 centimeter round cake tin.

Set the oven to 170 degrees Celsius

Grind the almonds using a food processor. Mix the almonds with icing sugar.

Whisk the egg whites until stiff, about 2 minutes. Fold in the almond flour and icing sugar. (Do not overwork the mixture as that will take out the air that you just whisked into the egg whites)

With a spatula, spoon the meringue evenly into the baking tin and bake it (bottom rack) for 35-40 minutes.

Let the tart cool in the baking tin.

Yellow cream

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 100 ml cream
  • 125 grams sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence, vanilla sugar or the seeds from 1 pod
  • 150 grams butter

Place all ingredients (except the butter) in a heavy-bottomed pan on low heat while you constantly stir with a whisk until it thickens. This takes 5-10 minutes. Do not let the mixture come to a boil as the eggs will then curdle. You don’t want that!

Remove the pan from the heat and add the butter, a tablespoon at a time while you stir with the whisk. Put in refrigerator to cool

Take the almond meringue base out of the baking tin and place it on a serving plate. Spread the yellow crème on top. Decorate with shaved chocolate or chopped almonds, or whatever suits your fancy.

The tart sits nicely in the refrigerator for a couple of days.

Want a bigger cake? Double the recipe and make two bases that you stack with yellow crème in between and on top.

Oh I can hardly wait for my 15 year old to come home from school, so I can feed him more cake before whisking him away to his favorite stores for a shopping spree and then to Hard Rock Café.

Happy Birthday!

 

 

How I lost Sir Nerdalot


Sir Nerdalot is celebrating his forty-first birthday today. Or thirty-elleven. Or twenty-nine plus tax.

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Romantic – A Knight in Shining Armour… Realistic – A Nerd in Tinfoil.

Actually, I have decided that I am not going to do the lying on the age-thing any longer, especially not on Sir Nerdalot’s behalf. No, I figure that the alternative to growing older is quite counter-productive, and not really something anyone would enjoy. So my favourite Nerd is forty-one. Today. Please join me in wishing him Happy Birthday in a language he can understand:

Of course, Old Mamasan, being such a perfect little housewife, made him birthday-cupcakes to bring into work. They do that in Denmark. Well, in Norway too, for that matter.

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Everyone knows that the best way to a mans heart is through is stomach. (Although the shortest, would probably be straight through his rib-cage.)

Let us establish a fact here: Sir Nerdalot is – yup, you guessed it – a Nerd. Old Mamasan is not. Old Mamasan is Nerd-friendly. There is a diffrence. As of last week, I fear that I have taken my demonstration of Nerd-friendliness a tad too far.

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A nerd to the right, and a nerd-friendly to the left.

Here’s the thing: Everyone that shares a driveway and a mailbox with a Nerd, are accustomed to “loosing” their Nerd to endless online discussions about what rocks the most of Star Wars and Star Trek. Throw a little Tolkien and Sir Terry Pratchett into the mix, and you have it going on for weeks upon end. Evening upon evening, shooting-noises and scary monster-roars are heard emerging from the Man Cave. Periodically you loose them to fiddeling about, and painting little figurines that they use in boardgames. Not seldom has my request for Sir Nerdalot to “put away his little dolls and come up for dinner” been answered with a frustrated: “It’s not little dolls, dang nabbit! They are Tyranids and this one in particular is a Tervigon. It spawns, and nerd-nerd-nerdinerd-nerd!” (And then he puts his little dolls away and comes up for dinner.)

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Sir Nerdalot meets a Polar bear. (Sir Nerdalot to the right.)

When Sir Nerdalot and myself were young and madly in love, which we still are (young, that is), I got him the most genius Valentines-gift. I mean, we are really talking Epic giftgiving here. I named a star after him. Nope, it’s not a hoax. With bigger and better telescopes, new stars and objects out there in the galaxy are discovered every day. They don’t even bother to name them anymore, they just slap a number on them. And then – here is the genius part – you can buy the right to name one! You get a certificate, an info-package, coordinates to where it is and what time of year you can see it, and so forth. It is really, really cool. Especially for a nerd! Have a look here , if you think this is the coolest stuff, since the Harry Potter-books!

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Sir Nerdalot and the Karate Kid snowmobiling on 78 degrees North.

Sir Nerdalot was absolutely flabbergasted about this gift. Even he lost the ability to speak Nerd! As far as gifts are concerned – we are talking bullseye! The problem with that gift, is that there is no coming back from it. Ever. You have now totally ruined every future giftgiving occation for all eternity. It doesn’t matter if you are going for pricey or thoughtful – you just can not top that one. Trust me – I have tried. Superman-boxers, Minions-PJs, laptops, homemade dinners, fancy restaurant-dinners, travels, R2D2-legos. They do not even come close. Be aware of this, should you decide to name a star after your Nerd, the price you pay is never being able to top it ever again. (Also, please note that you can’t possibly wait for the last giftgiving occation either. You’re going to have to risk it!)

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Sir Nerdalot two years ago.

But. This year I actually topped it. Lo and behold! He got a telescope, so now he can actually see the star that bears his name, somewhere out there in the infinite space! He got the gift early, a week ago. He has already tried it out, every night the past week.

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Sir Nerdalot setting up to star-gaze.

Every afternoon, right after dinner, he is pacing around the room wearing a path into the hardwood floor, waiting for darkness to fall. And I realize, I have lost him for good now. There will never be a shared movie-night again.

Not even Star Wars.

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Look! TWO moons!!

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Oh, I have lost him now!

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