Over coffee and muffins, I sat down with baker and sweet-treat maker Cecilia Fahlstorm, the author and photographer behind the popular blog Copenhagencakes.
Working with Copenhagencakes is close to my heart because it was one of the first Danish blogs I found after arriving in Denmark. Even though at the time I couldn’t read the text, I would look at the pictures and translate the recipes (which are easy to follow and delicious). It gave me a sense of being connected to the city; a powerful aspect of local blogs. Now I can read all of Copenhagencakes and it’s still one of my favorite blogs!
First, tell us how you got into blogging about baking
I used to read a lot of different blogs on all kinds of topics, food, fashion, design etc. I’ve always found a lot of inspiration for my everyday life by reading blogs. Reading blogs is a great way to procrastinate homework, housecleaning etc. One day, after reading baking blogs for a long time, I thought that I’d might as well combine my passions for baking and photography by putting together my own blog. I never thought it would be read by anyone other than myself!
Has baking always been a passion? What about writing and photography?
No, baking wasn’t really always my passion, neither was writing or taking pictures. I’ve had a millions hobbies. When I find something interesting, I take it on as a hobby and commit 100% to it for about 6 months and then find something else to commit to. As a teenager I played sports and classical music. It took up all my spare time.
Then I moved to Copenhagen to start university and on the side I started knitting. One thing lead to another and the next thing I know my scarves were being sold in a shop in central Copenhagen. Then I started sewing and I sold the clothes on webshops and flea markets. Then I started crocheting amigurumi animals. Then I took on designing floor lamps that I sold. I’ve really had a lot of weird hobbies. I’ve always liked baking, but the intense passion for baking only started a few years ago and I have a feeling that this hobby will last!
What is the best part of the baking process for you?
Without a doubt the best part is serving cakes and desserts for my friends and loved ones. That is worth all of the hours put into the baking process. I just love making people happy by serving them wonderful cakes and seeing their faces light up. Everyone loves cakes!
What’s your favorite recipe of all time?
My absolute favorite recipe is my carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. For two reasons: 1) They taste fantastic! 2) The recipe is really easy to follow and has never ever failed.
What do you consider your most Danish recipe and why?
My “most Danish recipe” is a really hard question! All cupcakes, macarons and cheesecakes are definitely not Danish, so they’re off the list. So are brownies and cookies. I guess I would have to say the apple tart! Apple tart is a classic Danish cake that one would bake during autumn when Danish apples are at their best. I just love apple tart served with a bit of sour cream or vanilla ice cream on the side.
You currently write in Danish. What can you offer our English-speaking readers?
First of all, I’ve learned that copy/pasting my recipes into Google Translate works really well, so I always recommend that to English-speaking readers. I also have a very active Instagram account in English. I plan on translating my recipes into English soon!
What does it mean to you to be a Danish or Copenhagen-based blog? Do you think your style or recipes are particularly Danish?
I’m very proud of being a Copenhagener and I love love love this beautiful city. I take great advantage of living in a vibrant city in which all of my cake dreams can come true. I can visit the best pastry shops, I can go to one of the big markets and buy whatever peculiar ingredients I need, and also I can be up to date with all of the latest press meetings and events concerning whatever is relevant in the cake “industry.” I would never be able to do any of this if I lived far away from Copenhagen.
I don’t think that my baking style is particularly Danish. I am very inspired by all kinds of different baking blogs: American, English and in particular Swedish, as I am half Swedish. My baking style is a great mix of all that I find interesting at the moment. One day it may be French macarons, the next day it may be Danish licorice.
What’s next for Copenhagencakes?
A lot of interesting things are happening all the time. I have many dreams and hopes for Copenhagen Cakes and for myself as an amateur baker. I can’t reveal it all now, but I can promise that things are definitely happening and it’ll be worth keeping an eye on!
Cover image: Mazarin tarts with rhubarb and vanilla cream on Copenhagen Cakes.