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Are you a Scandinavian pastry fan? Almond paste fiend? Baking fanatic? Have we got the holiday wreath for you!

Nordic cuisine is hot — we don’t need to tell you that. With several of the world’s best chefs hailing from northern Europe, this is the food you should be cooking now. Darra Goldstein is a renowned culinarian, the recipient of countless food and media awards and the founding editor of Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture. Her latest work is a comprehensive collection of recipes from all over Scandinavia. Take it from her: You can do this (and definitely should).

Thankfully, the art of baking is alive and well in Scandinavia, where coffee breaks are a cherished part of the day. I’m especially fond of the sweetened yeast breads made in all sorts of intricate shapes. The truth is, anything with almond paste makes me swoon, and this beautiful wreath is a particular favorite. During our penurious year in Stockholm, we had two weekly indulgences: a visit to Tommy, our friend the fishmonger, and a pastry at Vete-Katten, a warren of small rooms where coffee was served in Royal Copenhagen china and most of the patrons (it seemed to us) were ladies of a certain age, all perfectly dressed and coiffed. This konditori is now less formal and the plates more pedestrian, but the pastries and breads remain spectacular. It’s hard to decide which I like best: kanelbullar (soft cinnamon buns), semlor (tender cardamom buns filled with marzipan and whipped cream), the lavish prinsesstårta (sponge cake layered with pastry cream, raspberry jam, and whipped cream mounded into a dome and draped with pale green marzipan), or this delightful almond wreath. Mandelkrans tastes best when very fresh, but you can reheat it gently to serve the next day.

Reprinted with permission from Fire and Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking