Spring and Freesias

Magdalena Cake

A soft moon

This is a dessert that is called Magdalena.

My grandmother's name was Magdalena. And whenever she cook this sweet smiling happy, for this.

I don’t know why, but it was the only dessert that was cut in the shape of the moon. 


It was so soft that we kids had a good time to bring it closer to the ear, crush it a bit, and listen that slight effervescent sound, like compressed foam. 


The cut in the shape of the moon was like a rite. In doing things, my grandmother had a way of moving, had her particular gestures. The result of experience and a lifetime of hard work. 

She had a way of turning cafe, a way to keep the hoe in hand, and a way to cut the moons. A way that I will never make my own. 

Of course she used lard to make this cake, and it was much softer than mine, because I used margarine.



250 g flour 0

200 g sugar

200 g lard, or butter, or margarine

6 eggs

grated rind of a lemon or an orange

half of baking powder


icing sugar



Mix butter with sugar. Then add an egg yolk at a time. Add the grated rind of a lemon or an orange.

Add flour with baking powder and mix.

Mount the egg whites, with salt, until stiff. Add to the main mixture and gently incorporate. 


Cook at 180 degrees for 35-40 minutes.


Let cool and cut moons with a pastry rings (6 cm diameter) and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

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Commenti: 4
  • #1

    AN (mercoledì, 30 maggio 2018 04:34)

    Hi! So happy to find this recipe -- my grandmother is Croatian, and she makes the same cake (just slightly adjusted ingredient ratios). She also cuts them into moons with a circle cookie cutter; it was unthinkable to cut them any other way! :) I thought that was just a thing she did, so sweet to see this is apparently a tradition.

  • #2

    Vania Zemunic (sabato, 02 giugno 2018 06:36)

    Hi! I'm so happy to hear this! and I would like to know your grandmother's recipe.
    My grandmother used lard and eggs from her hens, and the cake was incredibly soft. This is one of those desserts that does not come to me as I remember it.
    I often asked for the moon cut, but nobody remembers the story behind it.

  • #3

    AN (domenica, 29 luglio 2018 03:17)

    This is so interesting! Looking through the blog, it seems like my grandmother is from a similar-ish part of Croatia; she’s from Vinkovci. Her recipe consisted of weighing eggs, then measuring out equal weights of butter, sugar, and flour. She beats the egg whites till fluffy, then sets them aside. Then she mixes the yolks, sugar, and flour with juice of half a lemon and grated skin of half a lemon. Then she adds the egg whites and bakes for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Then they’re cut into crescents and we sprinkle powdered sugar on top.

    Now I’m a curious about the shap origin! Maybe it was a generation trend that stuck. :)

  • #4

    Vania Zemunic (domenica, 05 agosto 2018 12:13)

    Thank you for the recipe. I must try it! I also have a recipe with the weight of the eggs, but it’s very different, and not very convincing. I will definitely try yours.
    Vinkovci is also in Slavonija. I think the dishes are very similar!