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Tiikerikakku // Finnish Tiger Cake, in a bundt tin just like my mum had!

Most of my childhood memories are based around my Mum’s cooking. As a kid, I was amazed at three things about my Mum – her beautiful face, her cooking skills, and her ability to walk around our city and not get lost! I remember roaming around with my hand in hers, gazing up at the tall buildings and wondering how she knows where she is going. I thought she was super smart.

As kids we weren’t fed a lot of takeaway meals. Takeaway was a treat and not a given just because Mum didn’t have time to cook, she always made time to cook. I remember when she worked split shifts and my Dad would be working away. Mum would get us ready for school, dart off to work some 45 minute drive away, come home in her break and chuck a meal in the slow cooker, then head back to work well into the evening. I had a hard time working at her level when I was a fulltime working mum, her kind of determination to make things flow smoothly isn’t something that comes naturally to me. I am more of a complain-about-how-hard-it-is-to-get-everything-done kind of person rather than just get it done. My Mum however, she just gets it done.

One fond memory I have of her cooking was a bundt cake tin she used to bake Finnish cake in, exactly like the one I used here. In fact, I think this could be hers! This tin made its way into my antique prop collection, it brought memories flooding back the moment I caught glimpse of it. I may not have balanced the working mother gig as well as Mum, but I can sure try baking half as good. And what better cake to try out my baking skills than a traditional Finnish cake.

Tiikerikakku translates to ‘tiger cake’, it’s the Finnish version of a marble cake. Coffee cakes are very popular with Finns, any family gathering will most often see a coffee cake or two on the table. This recipe is an adapted version courtesy of my Mum. The Finns of my grandmother’s generation favoured cream and margarine in cakes, whereas this version uses milk and butter. Also cornflour has been substituted for potato flour (also an old Finnish baking favourite).


250g butter, at room temperature

1 1/4 cups sugar

3 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract (my grandmother would’ve used vanilla sugar, either will do nicely)

1 1/4 cups plain flour

1 cup cornflour

2 heaped tsp (don’t level off spoon) baking powder

1/4 cup milk

3 tbsp cocoa powder



Preheat oven to 175C. Grease a 10″ bundt tin and coat with breadcrumbs.

Beat butter and sugar together until pale and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla.

Sift flours and baking powder in a separate bowl. Fold sifted flours into butter mixture with a wooden spoon. Add milk and mix until just combined.

Spoon 2/3 of the batter into greased tin.

Add cocoa powder to the remaining 1/3 batter, combine well to make a chocolate consistency. 

Spoon chocolate batter on top of the white batter, and if you like you can make swirls using a skewer.

Bake in preheated oven for 45-50 minutes until an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Do you have a favourite cake from your childhood that brings memories flooding back? 


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  • Virginia Kop - Gorgeous looking cake! Quite honestly, cannot remember cakes from childhood – except one I absolutely hated. Bought not made – Seed Cake. Just the thought of it makes me shudder. Think it was probably caraway seeds, more violent shudders!ReplyCancel

  • Your One and Only Loving mother! - You nailed it Pegs. I can almost taste it and it looks absolutely devine. The cake tin does look familier. I also liked your trip down the memory lane. It’s nice that you have such fond memories of your childhood. Love you to bits for just being you and carrying the Finnish tradition. xxooReplyCancel

  • Tatum Woodroffe - This looks delightful. I think it will be just the thing for afternoon tea with a friend tomorrow whike we have a coffee & chat and the kids play.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Oh Virginia, those awful childhood food memories aren’t fun. I have a similar memory of cabbage, still not a fan of boiled or stewed cabbage!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thanks Mum. You know as I get older I have a deep appreciation for my heritage. I’m rapt you were such a strong influence with the Finnish cooking and culture, I’m lucky I have access to all that information firsthand. :)ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Yes Tatum, yes! I hope you made the cake, please let me know if you did. The chocolate part of the cake is my favourite, so delicious!ReplyCancel

  • pete - love that tin…….ps the cake looks good too xReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thanks Pete, I love the tin too! The cake was pretty awesome as well. xReplyCancel

  • Kelly - This looks and sounds unbelievably delicious, yum! My grandma makes special dark chocolate brownies with coconut in them, I would say that was my favorite from childhood!

    Sparkles and ShoesReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Oh yum, dark chocolate and coconut is one of my favourite taste combinations. Your grandma’s brownies sound delicious Kelly.ReplyCancel

  • Tammy - Looks lovely & yummy! And lovely tribute to your mom!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thank you Tammy, it was lovely indeed. My Mum is my baking inspiration. :)ReplyCancel

  • Chocolate Layer Cake with Chocolate & Peanut Buttercream » cake crumbs & beach sand - [...] cake recipe is my Mum’s from our family favourite, Finnish Tiikerikakku. I have to warn you, if you are not a sweet tooth you may struggle getting through a piece of this. [...]ReplyCancel

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