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● Cakes made of flowing paste ●

Cakes made of flowing paste


A sweet, tubular delicacy of several layers, with sugar or chocolate topping, most widely – spread in German-speaking countries. Documentary evidence locates 16th century as time of genesis.

Recipe specification
Ingredients will be combined in 2 different kinds of dough and mixed together before baking. Metal bar is placed by hot surface and dipped in bowl with liquid dough (or dough is poured on metal bar with bowl underneath). Small part dough spreads on bar, then sticks. After dough bakes till brownish another layer is added on baked layer. The number of layers may even add up to 20 -25. In some further variations the relatively smooth surface of cake is made wavy by random cut offs produced on a new layer that is still liquid. It is done upon a certain number of layers.

(Photo: Los Angeles Times)(Photo: )

(Photo: Los Angeles Times)(Photo:

The recipe of Baumkuchen

Baumkuchen product label

Šakotis (Raguolis, Gâteau à la broche, Sękacz)

This dessert is popular in some parts of the Lithuanian, French and Polish speaking regions. It appeared most probably in 16th century.
Baking Ragoulis-Sakotis-Sekacz requires baking kit similar to spit used for preparing Baumkuchen , except that spit is to be spun much more quickly. Dough is made by adding ingredients gradually. What you get is a rather viscous paste, which means dough will not spread the length of spit, but will form stalactite – like drops, because of dough’s weight and of the centrifugal drive. Nor is the cross - section so regularly layered like of Baumkuchen.


(Photo: (Photo:

The recipe of Sękacz

Prügeltorte, Prügelkrapfen

This cake is mostly common in Austria, particularly in the Tyrolese villages along the River Brandberg . Dough is kneaded until a liquid, yet very viscous consistency with all ingredients combined at a time. Subsequently dough is run slowly on spit covered by baking paper. Spit is rotated slowly and heated from below or from sides. Where dough is solid some more will be poured. Unbroken layer will probably cover only part of cake surface. Dripping dough will form small bulges on cake crust.


The recipe of Prügeltorte


This cake, the dough of which is made of potato flour, is widely known in South Sweden.
It most likely dates back to the second half of 17th century. Dough is prepared from butter, sugar, eggs and potato flour and poured into bag cut at edge. Potato flour might be preferred because the colder, hyperborean climate is probably more favorable for this corn, hence the difference in ingredients. Thin strip is pressed on cone –shaped spit covered with baking paper, until strip covers whole length of spit in form of grids. Dough is placed over open fire or other heating source to dry. Then another layer of dough is added.
Procedure will be repeated until number of layers reaches up to 10 even. The end result is a cake of porous structure, fairly dry and long lasting. Crust can be embellished with color sugar glaze.


The basic recipe of Spettekaka

Cakes made of yeast-dough

‘Cake-on-a-stick’, 'Ayrkuchen' – the precursor of Baumkuchen (and presumably many other, similar pastries)

This type of cake made of yeast - dough is very similar to ‘our daily’ bread. Dough is twined in strip and wound on baking spit. The pastry was first mentioned in a manuscript from Heidelberg dated 1450. Frithz Hahn from Heidelberg was the first to prepare the cake following instructions of original recipe. This prototype probably had a single layer, and in some parts two layers. When baked, surface was brushed by egg and fat.

(Photo: Fritz Hahn)

Trdlo - Trdelnik - Trdelnice

This delicacy is rather widespread in Bohemia, Moravia and the western fringe of Southern Slovakia. It is probably a variant of the Ayrkuchen, a pastry quite common in German speaking areas of Central Europe already in 15th century. Nevertheless, the Hungarian influence is also important. Local people from the southern Slovak township of Szakolca/Skalica/Skalitz, consider this cake baked there a ‘descendant’ of the Transylvanian ‘kürtőskalács ‘(Kürtősh Kalách).

The cake is made from a sweet and relatively thick yeast-dough, which is wound on a cylinder shape spit. Ingredients may be enriched with chopped nutmegs, walnuts and apricot kernels. Before baking surface of the cake is covered with slightly beaten egg whites or egg whites mixed with water. This step is present in the baking procedure of the old German Ayrkuchen/Spiesskuchen, but it differs from how the surface of Kürtősh Kalách is prepared. The mechanic treatment of Trdlo-Trdelnik-Trdelnice surface also differs from the method applied at the Hungarian cake, and it comes much closer to the ancient German recipe. Before baking, dough is not sprinkled with sugar, neither patted down smooth. What they sprinkle on it is ground walnut. As a result surface is less smooth and there is no formation of caramel crust like in case of Kürtősh Kalách or Baumstriezel. While baking dough is now and again brushed with butter and later bountifully sprinkled with vanilla icing sugar. (yet another difference from procedures specific to Kürtősh Kalách).

(Photo: Hanka's Fotothing)


The recipe of Trdelnik

Kürtőskalács ('Chimney Cake' or 'Funnel Cake')

Fixture of festive events, this sweet delicacy made of dough is popular in Hungarian – speaking regions of Europe. History dates back to 16 -17th centuries .
Earlier dough was topped with honey, which later came to be replaced by granulated sugar, most likely due to mass production of sugar in 19th century.
Today Kürtősh Kalách gourmands can take delight in the caramel crust formed around the tubular treat, accompanied by a large spectrum of toppings.
Kürtősh Kalách most probably evolved from a variant of the ancient ‘Cake on Stick’, which comes from Transylvania. All the same, it might have been invented totally irrespective of the genuine cake.
By mid 20th century this rich, easy – to – make dessert has become immanent part of quotidian gastronomic culture of Szekler towns.
At dawn of 21st century Kürtősh Kalách was adapted in many countries of the world.

(Photo: Péter HANTZ)


This festive cake was popular in Transylvanian villages with a formerly Saxon population. (e.g. Heldsdorf /Höltövény/, Tartlau /Prázsmár/, Honigberg /Szászhermány/, Wolkendorf /Volkány/)
Following the Saxons’ migration to Germany, it has been prepared only occasionally, at some festive local events.
The ingredients of Baumstriezel are similar to Kürtősh Kalách ingredients. Yet unlike Kürtősh Kalách, dough of Baumstriezel is not spun in long strip, but stretched in rectangular form. Width should only slightly exceed perimeter of spit. Dough is wrapped around spit. Touching parts are worked together and patted flat. Then, like with Kürtősh Kalách, dough is rolled in granulated sugar. When baked, it is brushed with butter. It may come in variants both thinner and thicker than Kürtősh Kalách. Thinner cake is cut in square shape pieces after baking and served warm.
Note: Several Saxon cookbooks make no distinction between Kürtősh Kalách and Baumstriezel. However, more demanding works point to different baking procedures that denote different regions (i.e. Szekler and Saxon, respectively). It is a natural consequence of relationship between the two ethnic groups that they adapted different baking methods (e.g. Saxons made cake of spiral shape).

(Photo: Gablenberger Klaus Blog)(Photo:

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Funnel Cake (fried in oil)

It is hardly related to Kürtősh Kalách at all. There might be some resemblance in shape, but the size is much smaller. On a general rule length does not exceed 20 cm. It entered mainstream Hungarian and German – speaking countries, but unlike its counterpart, the Kürtősh Kalách, this treat is not connected to festive events in folk traditions. Base dough is similar to Kürtősh Kalách dough, except that it is not rolled in sugar, and having been wrapped on a tiny spit, is fried in hot oil. After baking it is rolled in icing sugar or ground walnut topping.


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