A Cake Named for a Man, Baked by His More Interesting Wife

By Stacy Brooks

Runebergintorttu is an iconic Finnish dessert: the miniature cake is made with ground almonds and cookie crumbs or breadcrumbs, often flavored with punsch or rum, always topped with a circle of raspberry jam ringed with icing. The cake is named for the nineteenth century Finnish poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg, who allegedly ate one every morning for breakfast. Today runebergintorttu (translated as Runeberg cake or Runeberg torte) is enjoyed in the days leading up to February 5, the poet’s birthday, although it is available year round in Porvoo, the town where he spent most of his adult life.

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