When contemplating spicy carrot cake or apple pie, one does not automatically think of Sweden. But Cook & Bake, an international app of panned cakes, scribed by Swedish chefs Jessica Frej and Maria Blohm, is a natural, especially for those on gluten-free diets.
The authors explain that chewy wheat flour is not the ideal cake base to begin with. Much better are corn meal or almond flour, potato starch or rice flour. Those, and five other alternatives, are explained, and then utilized in this collection of 20 cakes and pies. The free version, for iOS devices, allows access to just one recipe, the Swedish princess cake, fortified with custard, raspberry jam and covered in marzipan, but the others unlock for a mere $1.99.
There are old favorites like cheesecake, red velvet, and devils food, as well as a cardamom-scented Christmas cake with hints of ginger and clove, and gateau marcel, a chocolate mousse/chocolate cake combo. Each recipe comes with an email-able grocery list, and there are voice control options that allow you to vocally move the instruction forward and back when your hands are full.
There is something soothing in the design which incorporates soft colors and close-up photos, but the half dozen short videos demonstrating various icing and cake splitting techniques go a tad too far with their slow moving palette knives and soporific background music. Ingmar Bergman, it is not.