Plum Pizza, Anyone?: Pflaumenstreuselkuchen (Yeasted Plum Cake with Streusel)

As I continued to bake through my supply of Italian prune plums, I decided to make Luisa Weiss' "Pflaumenstreuselkuchen (Yeasted Plum Cake with Streusel)," which Weiss describes as a "late-summer classic beloved all over the German-speaking world." It has a thin yeasted cake base covered in a thick layer of plums and topped with streusel (although Weiss says you can leave off the streusel and just sprinkle the fruit with sliced almonds or cinnamon and sugar).

This cake seemed quite similar to Weiss' Apfelkuchen, but the recipes are different. For this cake, you mix flour, sugar, yeast, lemon zest, salt, milk, melted high-fat butter, and egg yolk, and knead for a few minutes. You let the dough rise for an hour and then press it into a parchment-lined 9-inch by 13-inch pan, pushing it up the sides to create raised edges. You arrange quartered Italian plums in rows on top of the dough, with each piece of fruit angled so one end points upwards, and with each row of fruit overlapping the last, so that the plums completely cover the dough underneath. The recipe calls for 580 grams of plums but I needed 725 grams in order to be able to cover all of the dough. Then you sprinkle over a streusel made from flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and softened high-fat butter. You bake the cake until the crust is golden brown and the streusel has browned.
I thought this cake was delicious and I liked it better than the Apfelkuchen. It very much resembled a fruit pizza -- especially because of the raised crust around the edges -- with the cake acting like a firm crust that made it possible to enjoy a slice as a hand food. There was a generous amount of fruit and the streusel was flavorful but not too sweet. This was a beautiful plum dessert and I would definitely make it again. Weiss advises that according to every German she polled, it's nonnegotiable that this cake must be served with lightly sweetened whipped cream. I served it without and didn't think it was lacking at all.

Recipe: "Pflaumenstreuselkuchen (Yeasted Plum Cake with Streusel)" from Classic German Baking by Luisa Weiss.

Previous Posts:


Louise said…
This doesn't look too different from what my mother baked, but her recipe wasn't yeasted. Her parents/grandparents came from near Frankfurt around 1900, so probably just a different family recipe.