People know Germany as a famous sausage producer. Even though this country also has delicious German desserts. Germany is famous for having delicious cakes. Germans have a habit of enjoying cake (kuchen) accompanied by coffee at around 4 pm. This time is known as kaffeezeit or coffee time and can be compared to British tea time.
In Germany, each region has its dessert specialty. Oh yes, when in Germany, tourists will find it difficult to choose a typical German dessert to try because wherever they turn, they will find so many mouth-watering choices. What are some typical German desserts to try? Check the list below.
Baumkuchen is the German version for spit cake or in Indonesia it can be likened to a legit layer cake. This cake is just one of many similar cakes that can be found throughout Europe. Several theories about the origin of this cake contradict each other.
Some say this cake originated in the German city of Salzwedel in the 19th century, while others say this cake is a derivative of a Hungarian wedding cake. To make this cake dough the ingredients consist of flour, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt, while butter is spread thinly on top, of a heat source.
Before each cake layer is stacked, the previous cake layer must be completely dry. Once sliced, the cake has a beautiful texture and appearance similar to a growth ring. Therefore this cake is called Baumkuchen or tree cake.
The basic dough can be enriched by adding various ingredients such as honey, nuts, and brandy. Often the cake is coated with sugar or chocolate glaze. These miniatures or slices of cake are called baumkuchenspitzen or tree cake ends. Generally, these parts are covered in chocolate and sold separately.
- Gâteau Black Forest
Black Forest Gateau or Black Forest Cake is a chocolate sponge cake topped with cherry filling and whipped cream. Usually, this cake is decorated with a lot of whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and whole cherries.
This cake comes from Germany which in its home country is called Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte. This German dessert is named after a special alcoholic drink known as Schwarzwälder Kirsch (Wasser) which originates from the Black Forest Mountains in southwest Germany. This drink gives this dessert a distinctive taste.
- Rote Grütze
For those who love cherries, this northern German dessert is a sought-after dessert. Rote grütze is a “pudding” made of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, and red currants, and then topped with vanilla sauce, and cold fresh cream, whipped cream, or ice cream.
The fruits are then mixed and cooked with sugar and potato starch to produce a gelatinous consistency. Generally, this dessert was made with cereals, and in the Middle Ages was popular among the lower classes.
Now semolina or sago is sometimes used in making this dessert. Rote grütze is served hot or cold and topped with vanilla sauce, milk, whipped cream, ice cream, or pudding.
In German, schnecken means snail. Schnecken is a pastry enjoyed in the morning that best compares to a cinnamon roll. Although this cake also contains cinnamon, unlike its American counterpart, the schnecken is not drizzled with icing. Instead, these cakes are coated with a light glaze and often topped with raisins.
The name of this German sweetbread is inspired by the shape of a snail as it consists of many rolls neatly placed in a pan. The final shape of this dough arrangement is reminiscent of a snail’s shell. The base of the bread is made from a brioche-like dough that is formed into a roll.
Usually, each roll consists of various fillings such as cinnamon butter, vanilla custard, fruit, poppy seeds, raisins, or marzipan. When baked, the bread is layered or sprinkled with powdered sugar. In Alsace, this sweet cake is better known as chinois.
This classic German Christmas treat is known as a stollen. Similar to traditional Anglo Christmas fruit cakes and Italian panetone cakes, stollen is a bread mixed with dried fruit, candied orange peel, and topped with icing sugar. This richly flavored fruit bread consists of a mixture of butter and sweet yeast.
This bread is usually flavored with a lemon flavor and enriched with various dried fruits and marzipan. While they may come in a variety of forms, stollens are generally oval and covered with lots of melted butter and powdered sugar. Stollen is originally from Dresden, from 1474 when it was still called striezel.
In Germany, there are only 150 ‘official’ stollen bakers. Official stollen bakers distinguish their products with the Augustus II stamp, ‘The Strong’. In the past, stollens were plain and made using only flour, yeast, and oil.
It wasn’t until 1490, when Pope Innocent VIII lifted the ban on butter baking during Advent, that stollens began to develop into the dense, rich-tasting cakes they are known today.
Unlike cheesecakes in the United States, traditional German cheesecakes are made with quark instead of cream cheese. The quark looks like thick Greek yogurt but is fresh, unaged cheese.
In addition, the crust on traditional German cheesecake is also different. Instead of using a crust made from pastries or graham crackers like American cheesecake, the cheesecake in Germany uses a sweet shortcrust. Sometimes no crust at all.
Although these cakes are widely sold in bakeries, tourists can also try käsekuchen sold in cafes. There the slices of the cake are taller and softer, often topped with a pile of fresh whipped cream which is usually served on the side of the cheesecake instead of on top. Most German cheesecakes are plain in appearance but there are also those with a mix of cherries, peaches, raisins, or mandarin oranges.
Usually, käsekuchen is served with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. This is a classic German dessert that is commonly eaten as an everyday snack with coffee or tea.
For more than 200 years bethmännchen has been a staple at Christmas in Germany. This cake originates from Frankfurt and is made from marzipan dough topped with rosewater. Each cake is decorated with three almond halves before glazing and baking.
Bethmännchen was closely related to the once influential Bethmann family. According to legend, this family pastry chef was inspired by a similar dessert called Frankfurter Brenten. He created the bethmännchen in 1838 and decorated it in honor of Bethmann’s four sons.
Today the cakes are popular across the country, but bethmännchen is still closely related to Frankfurt and is generally made during the festive Christmas season.
Another classic German cake, the bienenstich, is a cake made from sweet yeast dough. For the filling, the vanilla custard is added, while the topping is caramelized almonds. Translated, bienenstich means ‘bee sting’. The origin of this cake is believed to be from Munich.
However, the history of naming this typical German dessert is less clear. According to legend, the bienenstich is thought to be from the 15th century. It is said that a baker was stung by a bee because he had honey in his kitchen.
It could be that the name was also obtained from an incident when the villagers succeeded in fighting the troops from the neighboring area. To celebrate their victory they made a bienenstich.
Hearing his name, people will be reminded of typical Italian food. But spaghettie is not like the food made from pasta. This typical German dessert is in the form of ice cream and is a must-try while in Germany. Almost every ice cream seller will have a spaghettie menu. This dessert is not, but also for adults.
Spaghettie may just look like vanilla ice cream. But there’s just something about vanilla ice cream plus fresh strawberry sauce plus whipped cream placed on top of this incredibly delicious and satisfying ice cream.
Prinzregententorte is another delicious chocolate cake that originates from Bavaria in Germany. This cake consists of at least six layers of thin sponge cake covered with chocolate buttercream and apricot jam.
Sometimes this cake can be topped with apricot or raspberry preserves and is usually garnished with whipped cream or chocolate cream and topped with chocolate shavings. Originally, this cake had eight layers that were representative of the eight districts of Bavaria. But since there are currently only seven districts, now the cake consists of only seven layers.
The prinzergententorte cake was originally made in honor of Prince Luitpold of Bavaria, who later became Prince Regent. That’s where the name came from. This authentic German dessert can be found in many pastry shops throughout Germany.
Sweet food is always tempting, as well as the 10 typical German desserts above. Not only does the appearance look alluring, but the taste also makes people unable to resist it. Desserts in Germany vary from region to region.
If so far people only know Germany as a producer of sausages and beer, it turns out that this country also has a typical German dessert that is extraordinarily tempting. Hmm … are you tempted to taste the cheesecake or the black forest?