Streuselkuchen: Jem Sugnet’s Recipe

An almost finished product of the Sugnet family’s recipe for streuselkuchen. Jem Sugnet explains that it is normally topped with a light sprinkling of confectioner sugar. Photo by Jay Sugnet.

Kaffe und Kuchen, or coffee and cake, is a staple on Sunday afternoons in Germany. Traditionally, it is a time for family and friends to gather for conversation and some tasty treats. While the coffee aspect doesn’t differ much, there are a wide variety of cakes one could prepare for this occasion. One of the most traditional delicacies is the streuselkuchen, directly translated into English as “sprinkled cake.” Jem Sugnet’s family has a streuselkuchen recipe that dates back to his great grandmother and possibly further.

Streuselkuchen is characterized by a yeasted sheet cake base topped with a layer of sugary crumblings. Similar to the crumb cake, it is a simple recipe that primarily uses flour, sugar, and butter.

Sugnet learned how to make this dessert from his grandmother, who also taught his sister and cousins how to make it. “We usually just make it maybe once a year if we’re all at my grandparent’s house or some kind of gathering like that. If we have a family reunion we’ll make it,” explains Sugnet. He has fond memories of watching his grandmother and cousin make it together, and appreciates the tradition behind the recipe. “I value my family a lot, [and] being that it’s something that was passed down, it’s something I cherish.”

Sugnet has only prepared traditional streuselkuchen, but he hopes to experiment with different flavors, like berries, in the future.

Recipe:

  • Dough
  • 2 packets of yeast
  • ¾ cup of warm milk
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ⅔ cup flour
  • Mix ingredients
  • Place in metal bowl and cover with cloth. Wait 20-60 min until it doubles in size
  • Once at correct size ADD:
  • 1 room temperature egg
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ cup flour
  • Streusel
  • 2 sticks room temperature butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ½ cup sugar
  • 3-4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Freshly grated lemon
  • Mix by hand until it turns into little balls
  • Knead dough and spread on 18x12x1 pan
  • Put streusel on top
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes
  • Finish with a sprinkling of confectioner sugar.

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