Punschrullar (arrack rolls) are also known as dammsugare (vacuum cleaners). They are made from left over cake and so would be very economic if it wasn't for the fact that the other ingredients are not cheap!


They are known as punschrullar because they are flavoured with Swedish punsch, sometimes called Sweden's national drink. Punsch, which is quite different to punch, is a liqueur which is flavoured with arrack and other spices. It was originally imported into Sweden by the Swedish East India Company in 1733 and quickly became popular. It is fairly strong (25% ABV) and sweet (30% sugar).

Punschrullar quickly became known as dammsugare (vacuum cleaners). If you don't know why, you are too young! Ask your mother!


At first these might appear to be easy to make because, apart from melting some chocolate, there is no cooking involved. However, getting a professional appearance when making them by hand can be tricky. If this puts you off making them you might like to try making arraksbullar (arrack balls) instead by taking a tablespoon or so of the mixture and rolling it into a ball, then coating it in chocolate sprinkles instead of marzipan.


• Use any leftover cake for this. My favourite is some sockerkaka (Swedish sponge cake).
• Use a ruler to ensure that are all the rolls are the same size.
• Use separate knives for cutting the cake mixture and the marzipan to avoid getting cocoa stains on the marzipan.
• Ensure your hands are free of cocoa stains when handling the marzipan!
• Green food colouring varies a lot. Add a small amount at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition, until you get the shade you like. I needed one teaspoon, but you might find you need more or less.
Punschrullar freeze well.


75 g (⅓ cup) butter or margarine, softened
4 tbsp   icing sugar (confectioner's sugar)
1 tsp   vanilla sugar
2 tbsp   cocoa powder
250 g (1¼ cups) cake (sockerkaka, muffins or any leftover cake)
4 tbsp   Swedish punsch (or 1 tbsp of rum)
350 g (12 oz) marzipan
1 tsp   green food colouring (optional)
75 g (2½ oz) dark chocolate (semi-sweet chocolate)


1. Put the butter, sugars and cocoa powder in a food processor. Whizz briefly until evenly mixed.


2. Add the cake and punsch and whizz until evenly mixed.


3. Cut two pieces of greaseproof about 37½ cm x 10 cm (15" x 4") each. Divide the mixture between the two sheets and roll into two long sausages, trying to ensure that each sausage is an even diameter, something that is easier said than done! Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.


4. Optional: in a bowl gradually add green food colouring to the marzipan, mixing until it is the desired shade and evenly coloured. (Green is the most popular colour but sometimes they are pink or they are left uncoloured.)


5. Sprinkle the work surface with a little icing sugar and roll the marzipan out into a thin sheet, constantly rotating it as you roll it to prevent it sticking. Cut it into 6 cm (2¼") wide strips.


6. Re-roll the arrack mixture to make sure it is a nice even sausage. Cut the arrack filling into 6 cm lengths so that you have 12 pieces.


7. Roll each one up with marzipan. Chill them for at least 30 minutes.


8. Break the chocolate into small pieces and then carefully melt it in a microwave (I found it took 5 minutes on a low (360 W) setting) or in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.


9. Dip one end of each roll into the chocolate mixture and then transfer it to some greaseproof paper until the chocolate sets. Repeat with the other end of each roll. (I found that if I tried to do both ends at once the chocolate sometimes ran down the marzipan.)

10. Transfer to a tray lined with greaseproof paper and refrigerate until required. (Don't take them out too early because then they will become soft and easily mark or lose their shape.)

Published by Mighty Fox