Friday, November 20, 2009

German Butter Cake

Along came a German girl..... "what do you mean they don't sell vanilla sugar? What country are we in? I do not believe they don't have it!" She scans the shelves going up and down the row. Shopping for ingredients....... This all started because my dear husband wanted a butter cake. We looked at cake recipes all day but nothing satisfied her. Finally she downloads a recipe from the internet from a German website.

"I need a cup she says." I handed her a set of measuring cups which she rejected. "We do not use those." I suggested a tea cup which I have come across being used in some old British recipes. Again, she turns the idea down."...Ah, this is perfect." "You are kidding me," I retorted ," A MUG!" I questioned her but she is adamant - a mug it is.
"The recipe is from a Grandma site, old fashioned. It must be good, it has a 5 stars rating." We go with the flow since she is the one making the cake.

German Butter Cake
2 Pig mug flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
4 eggs
1 Pig Mug whipping cream (1 small carton)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 mug sugar

125 gm butter
4 Tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 mug sugar
200 gm sliced almond

Beat 1 mug sugar, 1 mug cream and 4 eggs together until light and fluffy. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla essence. Add 2 mug all purpose flour and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Beat until incorporated. Pour batter unto rimmed buttered cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes at 395 F/ 200C.

Meanwhile, melt 125 gm butter. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla essence, 1 cup sugar and 200 grams sliced almond. Stir to combine.

Remove cake from the oven. Spread topping in an even layer over the cake. Return cake back to the oven and bake for another 10 minutes until cake is cooked and topping is golden brown. Cake should pull away from the sides.

I was amused by this baking experience. I was expecting precise measurement and techniques. Instead I had this German girl downloading a recipe from the internet and then using the very precise Pig Mug to measure the dry ingredients! She does not sift the flour with raising agent, instead dump everything into the mixer. Guess what? It worked! The cake was delicious.

I learn the importance of vanilla sugar in German baking. The best I can establish it comes in 1 1/2 inch plastic package and is use very often the way we use vanilla essence, to add vanilla flavor to bake goods. Butter cake in the US is not what butter cake is in Germany. This was more like a sponge cake. In this version of Butter cake, the only butter was in the topping. I also learnt that when she ask for a hand mixer, she is asking for a whisk! I truly enjoyed the time I spent with my girl E baking.... although she has a strange way of slicing a piece of cake, don't you think?

For those of you who read and understand German, here is the link to the recipe

It appears that there was the Pig Mug was equivalent to 1 cup in measurement.

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