Friday, May 28, 2010

Food Photo Friday - Streuselkuchen (German Crumb Cake)

Last week, in anticipation of a hectic turnaround - with Shavuos over late Thursday night and preparations needing to be made for the upcoming Shabbos meals, I put in for a vacation day from work on Friday.
Little did I know that we would be invited out for the Friday night meal. So what does G6 do when she has a day off and no cooking necessary? Why, I bake of course!

Now don't get me wrong. We've all probably had more than our fair share of dairy products lately, but here I am staring into my refrigerator and seeing all this leftover butter and sour cream just begging to be turned into another delicacy and my oven is still dairy to boot.

So what's on the menu? Why, Streuselkuchen of course!
Steuselkuchen (pronunciation available here), is a traditional German crumb cake, made with a yeast dough and topped with a generous sprinkling of moist and buttery crumbs.

German Yeast Dough

½ cup whole milk (or whatever kind you have in the fridge... )

1 package (2 ¼ teaspoons) active dry or rapid–rise yeast (though back in Germany, they never heard of rapid-rise, so I'd be wary....)

¼ cup granulated sugar (German crumb cake dough is not as sweet as the American kind, but don't worry - the crumbs more than compensate :D )

2 ¼ cups all purpose flour, plus more as needed

4 tablespoons (½ stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 4 tablespoon-sized pieces

2 large eggs, at room temperature

Warm the milk (as you would water for challah...). Sprinkle with yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar and let sit for 10 minutes to "proof". Then combine with all the other ingredients and knead well. Let sit covered, until doubled.
Punch it down and press it into 2 buttered (not sprayed with cooking spray) 9" square pans.
Let sit for 20 minutes more.
Spread a generous layer of sour cream all over the top of the dough, taking care to reach all the corners. Sprinkle on crumb topping (recipe follows) and bake at 350ยบ for 30 minutes.

Call all your girlfriends on the phone and invite them over IMMEDIATELY for a "kafeeklatsch"!

Crumb Layer

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon (optional for the Americans - I omit for the most authentic taste)
1 1/2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix until crumbly. If it clumps together, break apart into crumbs or roll tiny balls. Sprinkle on the cake before baking.

(Now if you like your cake layer thinner, you could probably press the dough into three squares - - - just remember to MAKE MORE CRUMBS! (They're the most important part after all.....)


Shira at Table Poetry said...

Mmmm.....looks delicious! I would never have thought to make such a cake, but after your recommendation I may just try it!
Have a wonderful Shabbat!

G6 said...

Shira -
I just want to go on record that I take NO RESPONSIBILITY for the ensuing poundage or clogged arteries.
Prepare at your own risk.

efrex said...

*sigh* would that I had the time to spare for yeast-based recipes.

Sounds yummy any way you make it, but I wonder why exactly cinnamon is less authentic, particularly since the recipe includes vanilla, which presumably would have been at least as expensive as cinnamon, no?

Shira at Table Poetry said...

Hmmm....after that warning, G6, I think I may reconsider! Maybe fruit salad is a better choice....

ProfK said...

Also wondering about the optional cinnamon. The Austro-Hungarians all used cinnamon in a lot of their baked goods so I would imagine that the Germans also had access to it.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I don't know how I came across that post - just want to comment on that cinnamon thing. A traditional plain Streuselkuchen is without cinnamon, but there is also Streuselkuchen with cinnamon - then called Zimt-Streuselkuchen. Cocoa can also be added or some only add coacoa to half of the crumb-dough and then make a pattern with the brown and white streusel. So the cinnamon is really optional for those who like it.