Helena Ingvarsson with the van carrying the spettekaka. Photo: Private
Helena Ingvarsson, the chair of Matrundan Österlen, which markets food from eastern Scania, got up at 3.30am on Thursday to make the journey to Berlin Green Week, carefully packing her cargo of spettekaka and other delicacies to avoid damage.
“It is very fragile, and the first thing that happened today was that somebody pushed it down when we were unpacking, so the biggest one is crushed,” she told The Local.
Spettekaka, which means literally 'spit cake', is made by rolling a mixture of eggs, potato flour and sugar onto a skewer which is then rotated over an open fire, creating a spectacular meringue-like dessert.
“Spettekaka is a traditional cake that you had at all big parties in Skåne in the old days,” Ingvarsson said. “It has to be cooked over an open fire.”
A spettekaka served at a 70th birthday party in Osby. Photo: Charles J Sharp/Wikimedia Commons
The towering cake is so fragile that it has to be cut with a hacksaw blade as using a knife will cause it to shatter.
It was the second Swedish foodstuff to be granted “protected geographical indication” status by the EU, winning the designation in 2000, just a few years after Svecia cheese, and a year before the much better-known falukorv sausage.
The cake is quite similar to the Šakotis or sękacz spit cake common in Lithuania and Poland.
Ingvarsson said she was not too upset by the destruction of her most eye-catching exhibit.
“We had it mostly to show off, so it's OK. Now the German visitors can try it.”