Which Kuchen are you cooking in your kitchen?

Series: Welcome to my Kitchen | Story 15

September 12, 2019

Deutschesfest is less than a week away. Many have already baked Kuchen, strudel and other German treats in preparation for the Odessa Historical Society Bake Sale and Fest Platz vendor sales. New this year on the outdoor stage is a Kuchen Contest. Kuchen is a relatively easy recipe to start your venture into Deutschesfest food preparation.

Kuchen base is a soft yeast dough and the filling usually consists of a cream mixture, plus any fruit you like, but there are many variations. Sugar Kuchen is as basic as it gets and the recipe in the Hospital Staff of Life Cookbook, submitted by the late Mrs. Con Schlimmer, is a good one for any Kuchen you would like to make. Give this a try and enter the contest.

Sugar Kuchen

1 packet or 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

1/2 cup lukewarm water

1 tsp granulated sugar

1 1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup melted shortening, vegetable oil or butter

1 cup milk, heated to 110 degrees

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

5 cups all-purpose flour

Heavy, thick cream for topping

Crumb Topping:

1/4 cup butter

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling.

In a large mixing bowl, soften yeast in the lukewarm water with the tsp granulated sugar, about 10 minutes. Stir in salt, melted shortening, lukewarm milk and 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Beat eggs well and stir into mixture. Add the flour all at once and stir until well combined and dough clings together in a soft ball. This takes quite a bit of stirring.

Let dough rise in a warm place until double in bulk. Divide into four equal parts. Roll and press each part into a well greased round 9 inch cake or pie pan. Let rise another hour.

Meanwhile combine topping ingredients using a pastry blender to form fine crumbs. Set aside.

When dough has risen the second time, brush surface of dough heavily with the cream. Sprinkle with the crumb topping and additional cinnamon.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, on racks closest to the center of the oven. Switch pans on racks half way through to bake evenly. Yield: 4 Kuchen.

Notes: Those familiar with this recipe will notice, I have added a bit more direction from how it is printed in the cookbook. Mrs. Schlimmer just assumed the reader would know what to do with a list of ingredients and minimal instruction.

My preference in this recipe is butter, but any mild flavored fat works well.

Fruit filled Kuchen is very popular as well at the bake sales. Sliced peaches, apples, pears, apricots, or berries of any sort. Then there is Kaese (cottage cheese) fillings and though not common at bake sale, savory filling.

Kaese Kuchen is in demand at the bake sales, with or without the addition of fruit.

Kaese Kuchen Filling

1 1/2 cups small curd cottage cheese

2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 large eggs, well beaten

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients and pour into dough lined pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.

Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 15 minutes. Then reduce heat to 325 degrees and bake 20 to 30 minutes longer until filling is set.

To add fruit, add an additional 2 Tbsp flour to the mixture. Then toss 2 cups sliced apples, peaches or prunes with 1/2 cup granulated sugar just before placing in dough lined pans. Kaese filling is enough for two when you add fruit. Bake as directed above.

Cream filled fruit Kuchen, particularly apricot, peach and cherry are also popular at bake sales. Cream filling is easy to prepare and the following recipe makes enough for four 9 inch Kuchen.

Cream Filling for Kuchen

1 quart heavy whipping cream

3 Tbsp all-purpose flour 3 large eggs

1/2 to 1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients, using 1/2 cup sugar for apples, sweet cherries and apricots, 3/4 cup for peaches and tart cherries and 1 cup for prunes or rhubarb.

Arrange 1 1/2 to 2 cups sliced or cut fruit in dough lined pans. Don’t over do on the fruit. Divide the filling between the four Kuchen. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake in 350 degree preheated oven until filling is set and fruit is tender, 35 to 45 minutes

Sour cream filling is especially good with plums, prunes and also with apples. Prune Kuchen is best with a Streusel topping added.

Sour Cream Kuchen Filling

1 pint sour cream

3 large eggs

1/4 cup granulated sugar

Combine all ingredients beating well.

To use with 2 cups plums or prunes, partially cook them in 2 Tbsp water over medium heat, watching carefully to not scorch, for 5 to 6 minutes. Drain and place in two dough lined pans. Divide filling between the two pans. Sprinkle with the following Streusel Topping.

Streusel Topping

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup butter

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients, using a pastry blender to form coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over fruit and filling in Kuchen pans. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.

On the savory side, Onion Kuchen is a savory change of pace to biscuits or rolls with soups and stews. Use your favorite Kuchen dough in this recipe.

Onion Kuchen

3 medium yellow onions, peeled and sliced.

1 egg

1/2 cup sour cream

Salt and pepper to taste.

Sauté sliced onions in 2 Tbsp butter or bacon fat, until translucent and soft. Set aside to cool slightly.

Combine remaining ingredients and set aside.

Place cooled onions in dough lined pan. Pour filling over onions. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes until golden brown and filling is set. Cool 5-10 minutes before cutting to serve. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Share your favorite recipes. German or otherwise, by sending them to: Welcome to My Kitchen, c/o The Odessa Record, P.O. Box 458, Odessa, WA 99159, email therecord@odessaoffice.com or drop them in the Welcome to My Kitchen mail tin in The Odessa Record office. Follow us on Facebook, Welcome to My Kitchen #odessaiscooking Deadhead flowers to encourage new bloom in time for Deutschesfest.


Reader Comments


Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2019

Rendered 11/18/2019 19:50