Whenever I go to Germany at this time of the year I bring back a certain type of plum. It’s ‘Zwetschgen’ that I bring back, which are very much like damson plums in England.
They are more of a blue colour and have a more oval shape compared to other plums and they are great in cakes.
The most typical German ‘Zwetschgen Kuchen’ would be made with a yeast based dough but as that needs time to raise I prefer making the other typical variation of a ‘Zwetschgen Streuselkuchen’ which has a crumble (= ‘Streusel’) topping and is just as tasty.
Serve it up with some whipped cream and a cup of coffee you and you have a very German ‘Kaffee und Kuchen’ spread which is usually eaten in the afternoon but I give you permission to tuck into it for brunch too!
For a 26 cm round spring form you will need:
(for the cake)
- 50g soft butter
- 50g sugar
- 5g baking powder
- 150g flour
- 1 egg
- 125ml buttermilk
- 700g damson plums
(for the crumble topping)
- 50g flour
- 35g ground almonds
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 35g brown sugar
- 50g cold butter
Grease and line the spring cake tin and preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
Combine the baking powder with the flour in one bowl.
Cream the butter and sugar with an electric whisk, then add the egg and beat it under. Add the flour you mixed with the baking powder. Then add the buttermilk and whisk everything until you have a smooth dough.
Spread the dough evenly into the cake tin.
Now for the plums – wash, half and de-stone them and spread the plum halves over the dough, lightly tucking them vertically so that they are slightly sticking out.
Start to bake the cake in the oven for 25 minutes during which time you prepare the crumble.
Mix the flour, ground almonds, cinnamon and sugar then add the cold butter, cut into cubes, and rub it in the flour mix to get crumbs. Pour those over the pre-baked cake once the 25 minutes of baking time are over and bake it for a further 25 minutes.
Cool the cake down on a wire rack before eating it – ideally on the same day.