The holiday season is the best time to celebrate traditions and feed your soul. My celebration couldn’t be complete without some good old-fashioned baked goods, and this year I’m including a family favorite which represents my Scandinavian heritage. Krumkake (krmkäk), is best described as a fancy waffle cookie and simply translates to curved cake in Norwegian.
My mother and grandmothers made this delicate treat each holiday season, and as a child I’ll admit it wasn’t the first item I chose from the dessert tray. No, I lunged for anything with sprinkles, chocolate or caramel. However, as an adult, I have come to love this crispy, sweet-tasting cookie and decided to make a batch myself. Lucky for you, I’m sharing my recipe (a slight variation from the one pictured above) and some tips you can use to make your own krumkake.
To make krumkake, you will need a special krumkake iron, available online from Villa Ware through Amazon or other specialty retailers (~$100). I received mine as a gift from my mother, who incidentally uses a traditional stove-top iron vs. my electric, non-stick iron. Your iron will come with a wooden cone to roll/shape the cookies. You’ll need a large cooking space, a timer, and a spatula to remove the cookie from the hot iron once it’s done. As you can see below, I wasn’t sure what type of spatula would work best. The slotted, stiff spatula did the trick.
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened to room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1-1/2 cups flour
- 6 tablespoons milk
Step 1. Preheat krumkake iron. Grease iron with cooking spray or shortening.
Step 2. Beat eggs with a hand mixer or Kitchen Aid mixer.
Step 3. Add sugar, butter, vanilla and cardamom and mix well.
Step 4. Add flour and milk, alternating a little of each and mixing well as you go. The batter should have the consistency of a thick pancake batter.
Step 5. Spoon a tablespoon-sized dollop of batter in the center of each krumkake plate and close the iron. Let the batter bake for 30-45 seconds.
Step 6. Open the iron and use a spatula to remove the cookie from the plate and set on a towel/countertop. Use the wooden mold to roll the cookie into a cone shape. Allow cookie to set a few seconds before transferring to a cooling rack. The cookie will be soft when you remove it from the oven and will crisp up as it cools. Repeat until you’ve used all the dough.
Step 7. You may wish to sprinkle with sifted powdered sugar for additional sweetness, or serve with berries, jam, whipped cream or Nutella. Be sure to store krumkake in a covered cake pan or other airtight container (to avoid humidity as they will stale quickly otherwise).
I love the traditional krumkake cone however I also love waffle cones with my fro-yo and ice cream. After making about half the batch, I decided to experiment a bit using some nesting bowls to create some krumkake bowls for my frozen delights. I was pleasantly surprised to see these turn out so well!
Instead of rolling the cookie on the cone, I simply placed the warm cookie over top of the smaller glass bowl, then cupped the larger glass bowl over the top to mold it into a bowl shape. I let each one cool for 30 seconds before transferring to a cooling rack, placing them upside down to keep their shape until they cool completely.
- Home with the Lost Italian: Krumkake a delicate delight, Tony and Sarah Nasello, Fargo Forum, December 3, 2013
- The Lost Italian blog post Holiday Baking Goal #1: Norwegian Krumkake.
- Milk and Cereal blog post Krumkake. Love the author’s alternative to traditional krumkake…she rolls tighter (using chopsticks) and drizzles with melted chocolate for a NYE celebration. Genius!!
- And for my gluten-free friends…Celiac Eats blog post Norwegian Christmas: Gluten-free Krumakake.