Runeberg Cake (Finnish vegan almond cake) or Runeberg Torte is a classic Finnish pastry, which we usually only eat in January and February when we celebrate Finnish national poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg (Runeberg’s Day is 5th of February). In my opinion the whole celebration is only about the CAKE 🙂 This is a pretty unique cake with spices such as cardamom and a drop of bitter almond extract. The topping is usually raspberry jam and sugar frosting, and with these cute colors I think this would be a the perfect cake for Valentine’s Day, too!
Veganizing the Runeberg Cake or Torte
The cake isn’t traditionally vegan, but it was super simple to veganize. I just used yogurt instead of eggs. I also wanted a fresh berry flavor so I used frozen Finnish raspberries in the cake center instead of raspberry jam. One thing I didn’t change is the sugary frosting. It’s an essential part of the cake, making the cake sweeter and yummier.
The original cake is actually a mini cake, sort of like a tall cupcake, always quite difficult to eat. So one thing very different about this loaf cake is that it is very easy to eat 🙂 And I think the raspberry-sugar frosting-cake ratio is pretty perfect like this.
Special Runeberg Torte spices
Don’t be scared of the long ingredient list – it’s mostly spices, which make this cake so unique and flavorful. Like orange zest and cardamom. The bitter almond extract is by not a mandatory ingredient, but it does give an extra special touch to this Runeberg Cake.
ps. If you’re more into chocolate, here’s a similar loaf cake but with a chocolate heart instead of raspberries 🙂
Runeberg Cake (Finnish vegan almond cake)
- 1,5 cups all purpose flour (~200 g / 350 ml)
- 0,6 cups almond flour (~60 g / 150 ml)
- 0,4 cups crushed gingerbread / ginger / digestive biscuit / graham cookie crumbs (you can crush the cookies in a food processor until you have a fine cookie crumble) (~60 g / 100 ml)
- 2 tsp ground cardamom
- 1,5 tsp baking powder
- 0,5 tsp salt
- 0,8 cups coconut sugar (~140 g / 200 ml)
- 1 cup unsweetened or neutral / vanilla flavor soy yogurt (250 ml)
- 0,8 cups oat drink or other plant-based milk (200 ml) I use Kaslink AITO organic oat drink
- 0,2 cups olive oil or other oil for baking (50 ml)
- 1/2 tsp orange zest
- 1/8 tsp or a few drops bitter almond extract This is totally optional, but gives the cake a unique flavor
- 2 oz raspberries (60 g)
- 1 cup powdered sugar (250 ml)
- 4 tbsp orange juice or water
- 1 tbsp water
- Preheat oven to 190 C / 375 F
- Line a loaf cake pan with parchment paper. I'm using a 26 cm x 10,5 cm (10,2 x 4 inches) loaf pan (inside measurement).
- Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl: flours, crushed cookies, spices, baking powder and sugar.
- Add wet ingredients: yogurt, oil and milk.
- Add orange zest and bitter almond extract and mix batter well.
- Pour half of the batter into the loaf pan.
- Place raspberries in a line in the middle of the cake all through the pan.
- Pour the rest of the batter on top of the raspberries.
- Bake cake for 50-55 min or until toothpick test comes out clean. Depending on the oven, this might even take longer. Place a parchment paper on top of the cake to prevent it from burning from the top part. Let cake cool well before frosting it.
- Mix frosting ingredients with a whisk and spread on top of the cake.
- Store cake well covered in the fridge and take out about 15 min before serving.