This torte is today a “sweet greeting” from the Upper Austrian town of Linz, on the river Donau, which is sent to all countries throughout the world where it has won the hearts of many connoisseurs! In Austria there is even the saying, “was sind aller Dichter Worte gegen eine Linzer Torte!” (“What are all poets’ words in comparison to the Linzer Torte!”). This torte which may, on first glance, appear like a simple cake made out of shortcrust pastry filled with jam does, in fact, show real culinary potential. And the best thing about the preparation of this classic which is more a cake than a torte, is that it only requires few ingredients and not much time or cooking expertise.
- 140 g butter
- 140 g icing sugar
- 140 g hazelnuts (ground)
- 140 g flour
- 2 egg yolks (cooked and pressed through a sieve)
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp bean coffee (ground)
- pinch of cinnamon
- pinch of ground cloves
- 1/2 lemon (juice)
- butter (for greasing cake tin)
- 60 g red currant jam
- 1 egg (for brushing)
- sliced almond (optional)
- 1 tbsp icing sugar (optional, for sprinkling)
Directions for Linzer Torte
- Mix all the dough ingredients and knead to form a smooth pastry dough. Leave to rest in the fridge for approx. 30 minutes.
- Halve the dough and use one half for lining a greased cake tin. Brush the pastry evenly with the jam.
- Roll out 2/3 of the remaining dough to form approx. 5 mm thick rolls and use these to form a lattice pattern on the cake.
- Use the remaining pastry to form a roll approximately the thickness of your finger and press around the edge of the torte as a border.
- Pre-heat the oven to 160 °C/ 325 °F. Brush the lattice and border with whisked egg and sprinkle the edge with sliced almonds (optional). Bake for approx. 45 minutes until the torte has a nice golden colour.
The Linzer Torte may also be refrigerated as this allows the flavours to unfold more and makes the cake particularly moist. It is, therefore, recommended that you make this in advance and cool in the fridge before serving.
Whoever invented the cake remains a mystery. The oldest recipe originates from a 300-year-old cookbook and used butter, almonds, sugar, flour and spices for the pastry – which are still the main ingredients used today. The search for the very first Linzer Torte recipe and its “inventor” continues and offers plenty of scope for speculation. It is often thought that a Viennese baker called “Linzer” created the cake although this contradicts the historic naming of dishes which were originally named after their country or district of origin and not the cooks who made them.
By the way, our famous Linzer Cookies also come from Linz, which should not be missing especially for Christmas.