And thus I resume my adventures into more German food making.
Last year I made this German Apple Pancake. And prior to that there is of course spaetzle which Popo would make for Kristen and I when we were kids so it has a special place in my heart. We were obsessed with it but ate it in the least German way possible with marinara sauce and parmesan cheese. I can feel my friend Mark cringing and cringing. But we will talk about spaetzle on another day.
This plfaumenkuchen which I have pronounced again and again in my head and got kind of freaked out when hearing this pronunciation, is something that I stumbled across by accident. Well not completely since I religiously read Molly's blog. It got me researching more about plfaumenkuchen and it sounded fascinating. Why would you not top bread dough with fruit and streusel? It basically combines all of the things that I like. And since it was finally gloriously cool enough to make bread, I decided to tackle this thing that I had known nothing about only days before.
It starts with what is called a coffee cake dough. This is different than coffee cake that is actual cake. The bread version often has the same toppings, but the end result is a different texture and the dough includes yeast. And of course the premise is that you would make this and eat it with coffee. As a non-coffee drinker, I would eat this anytime of the day coffee or not but can see it going well with a hot beverage. This dough is nice in that you can refrigerate it overnight and pull it out the next day/morning when you need it.
Like focaccia, you flatten it out on a large sheet pan. It helps to do this in increments and let the dough relax so you don't get too frustrated if it isn't spreading out. In the meantime, you want to thinly slice these gorgeous Italian plums. I have never worked with Italian plums before so was surprised to find their centers to be such a bright pretty green. These are more firm and less juicy than regular plums which makes them perfect for topping something like this where you don't want the end result to be soggy.
And of course, you top it all with streusel which if you have been around this blog for a while, know is something that I love to top on so many things. It really makes any baked good a million times better. For more, see these cranberry muffins, this banana cake, this apple, cranberry and ginger pie, this lemon and blueberry cake, and these peach doughnuts. Whew.
I am amazed at how these plums change color in the oven. They turn from bright green to a beautiful magenta/fuchsia. Basically the only kind of pink that I actually love. The plums melt into both the cinnamon sugar mixture and the streusel and are a perfect compliment to the bread base which is crisp and chewy with a light crumb. I ate a quarter of this in one day. It is so good fresh. But, also good toasted the next day or two while warm out of the oven.
I definitely want to make more iterations of this. Perhaps with apples the next time around?
Plum Streusel Cake (Plfaumenkuchen)
Yields: 8-10 servings