Latvian Alexander Cake
By Lisa Kivirist - Winter 2017 Issue
Although it’s called “cake” in Latvian circles, it’s really a shortbread bar cookie. It’s said the treat was created for and named after a Russian czar who visited Latvia in the early 1800s. You’ll find it on Baltic tables for holidays and special occasions.
Recipe Detail Serves: 36 45 minutes Prep Time, 30 minutes Cook Time
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. In separate bowl, whisk flour and baking powder. Gradually add flour mixture to creamed mixture until incorporated; don’t overmix. Dough will be very stiff. Remove dough from mixing bowl and form into a big ball. Cut dough ball in half.
Spread each half onto an ungreased 13-by-18-inch rimmed baking sheet, ensuring dough is level so it bakes evenly. Bake one prepared baking sheet for about 15 minutes, until nicely browned.
While the first sheet is baking, mix raspberry jam and red currant jelly together.
Remove first baking sheet from oven and spread the jam/jelly mixture evenly over the hot cookie layer.
Bake the second prepared baking sheet for 15 minutes, until nicely browned. Remove from oven and immediately flip over on top of jelly layer, keeping it in the baking sheet. Adjust the top layer until it is positioned evenly over first layer, then remove pan.
Mix lemon juice, powdered sugar and hot water together until smooth. Immediately spread over hot cake. Cool in pan for at least six hours. Cut into 36 squares for serving or storing.