German Coffee Cake (Schuttelkuchen)

German Coffee Cake (Schuttelkuchen)
Lately I have been craving some good old German dessert. Back in the day, not that I will age myself with specific dates or numbers, I spent my senior year of high school in Germany. After an unpleasant experience with my first host family I had a wonderful time with my second family. My host mother, Mama, was the baker, my host father, Papa, was the cook. It was a division of labor that worked quite well.

One of the things I remember most is the wonderful ritual of having Kaffee in the afternoon, pretty much the equivalent of afternoon tea but usually served with coffee. Of course in my case it would be tea since I didn’t like coffee, still don’t. I remember many times suffering through drinking coffee with my first family since they wouldn’t let me have tea and they insisted it was rude to turn it down when visiting people. There just wasn’t enough cream and sugar to make it tolerable!

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Mama made many wonderful treats for Kaffee. Most were pretty simple, bundt cakes or sheet cakes. That is something that I am all about. I love a nice simple cake that can be mixed in one bowl, no super sweeet frosting required. My kids will eventually learn that cake is not all about the frosting!

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My biggest problem with this cake was coming up with a name for it. I have a notebook I brought home from my year in Germany that contains recipes I wrote down. This one was simply called Schuttelkuchen. After doing some research the name doesn’t mean much since there are so many different variations on this cake. It contains coffee, mini chocolate chips and hazelnuts among other things. I figured just call it a coffee cake, why not?!

I made a few minor changes to my original recipe. The best part was that I am in the States now, no need to chop my chocolate. Ah, how I missed chocolate chips while living in Germany! Once again Sean was by my side, luckily not until the end of preparing the cake. He basically ate the hazelnuts before and after I chopped them. I am generally not a fan of nuts in baked goods but it worked for me this time, maybe it was the memories it brought back. I baked it in a bundt pan. Mine is a little smaller than the standard size so baking times may vary a little. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

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German Coffee Cake (Schuttelkuchen)
2 1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
3 eggs
1 c. brewed coffee, cooled to room temp
3/4 c. butter, melted
2 Tbs. rum
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 c. finely chopped hazelnuts
1 c. mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease and flour a bunt pan (or Baker’s Joy works really well for an intricate patterned pan). Combine the flour, sugar and baking soda in a small bowl. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, coffee, butter, rum and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and mix well. Gently stir in the nuts and chocolate. Pour in the prepared pan and bake for about an hour or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Yields 16 servings

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24 thoughts on “German Coffee Cake (Schuttelkuchen)

  1. foodessen

    Great post! I think I can help you with the name of your cake. The word Schüttelkuchen, schütteln meaning to shake and Kuchen as you know is cake. This was meant to be a cake that is mixed and baked in the same container (cake form). And you are absolutely right that there are many variations 🙂

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      Thanks! I knew the literal translation too, just a little tricky to explain. While it is the name of the cake, it is more a description of the type, not flavor. Kind of like a Ruhrteig,though those cakes also have a specific name. Sometimes things get lost in translation! Or better yet Himmelstorte, boys I must be getting hungry for German cakes!

      Reply
      1. foodessen

        You’re so welcome. And oh yes, sometimes things get really lost in translation. Enjoy your German baking!

  2. Liz

    lol, more rum! This is so pretty and I love your memories. My 11-year-old is in first year German and I will show her what you did here. And that pan! Is baking spray your secret? I can’t imagine getting a cake out so flawlessly. Hazelnuts, chocolate chips, coffee–you are talking heaven here.

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      I did use Baker’s Joy for the pan. It is basically impossible to grease and flour that thing! I only wish they started German so early here. I don’t think it is a choice until high school. Of course that is when I started in Wisconsin growing up too. Only Spanish and French were offered earlier and I was determined to take German! I try to teach the boys so e now and they enjoy it. They also like schnitzel, bratwurst and other German food too!

      Reply
  3. Liz

    Did you make this? It looks like a page, straight out of a modern cookery book. The photos are lovely. Omg I want to taste this cake..I can actually visualize the taste..coffee, hazelnuts and chocolate. Outstanding flavours. I must try and make one for myself. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      Well thank you very much for the kind compliments! I am doing my best to photograph things with the kids not around so I am not rushed. It doesn’t always work, but when it does the results are certainly better. It is indeed tasty and not too sweet. Enjoy the week and thanks again Liz.

      Reply
      1. Liz

        I don’t like too sweet so it would be a perfect cake for me. I shall definitely be making it as soon as I can squeeze some time. Enjoy the rest of the week!

      2. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

        Time is at a premium lately! I can’t imagine how you do it all with kids’ activities. I was at the doc Monday and was diagnosed with Shingles. Luckily the drugs are slowly bringing me back to normal. Next week the boys start swim lessons twice a week, always a challenge to my schedule since they start at 6:30. What about family dinner?!

  4. trixpin

    Oh I love it! A beautiful cake, and gorgeous ingredients! Seems that chocolate, cake and nuts are the way to go 😉
    I’m very jealous of your time in Germany – I would love to go. I just need a good excuse. And some money …

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      The ingredients certainly all work well together. Too bad travel takes money! I am missing all of Europe lately. Unfortunately travel with a family of five to Europe is not in my future. Maybe some day I will escape with just the hubby.

      Reply
  5. ChgoJohn

    How fortunate that you were able to leave hosts #1 and came to hosts #2, a fantastic family. Makes me wonder why hosts #1 got into the program. And what a great souvenir to bring back with you: a cake recipe. It sounds delicious, too.

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      Definitely a great souvenir! The boys were already going through the bread cookbooks I brought back too! Unfortunately the host family situation cannot always be a good one, but I really do question how my first family got in the program….a host mother only 5 years older than me and sharing a room with a one year old?!

      Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      Thank you for the compliments about the photos. It is always a struggle photography with needy and hungry children nearby as I am sure you must know! The cake was delicious and the memories of Germany even better. Time to break out more of my German recipes!

      Reply
  6. Liz

    I hope you’re feeling better by now? Wish you a speedy recovery!!! All my evenings are spent in the Gym…Monday to Friday and Sunday inclusive (older children have more demands!) Best wishes!

    Reply
    1. MamaD1xx4xy Post author

      Feeling much better thank you. I can only imagine how busy your schedule is with your children. This summer the older boys will be on swim team which will keep us busy, but luckily practice is at my gym so it works well with our schedule. Get up early for lessons, get my workout and still be done well before lunch. Enjoy the last of the weekend!

      Reply

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