Let’s Make Rotweinkuchen! (German Red Wine Cake)

An easy way to bring delicious German flavor to your cookbook.

I’ve never been to Germany. Heck, I’ve never been to Europe. But there’s something about the language — the culture — the food… that draws me to the Land. I’m not quite sure when the infatuation began; was it our honeymoon journey to Epcot, giving us just a little taste of what Deutschland has to offer? Or was it way back in high school, when a good friend was taking German classes, and I scowled through Spanish in jealousy?

Now that I’m 84 days into my Duolingo streak and even further along on my travel daydreams, I’m diving right in to the thick of German cooking. Sohrab and I have always enjoyed our adventures in the kitchen, and there’s nothing quite like bringing new cultures into our home. Between looking at travel packages to Germany and comparing the different Vororte of Munich, I’ve discovered several delicious dishes that we couldn’t help but try.

The first recipe on the docket? Rotweinkuchen. Red. Wine. Cake. German is a compound language, with morphemes piling on top of each other like Agent Smith and Neo in The Matrix Reloaded. Like Mark Twain said,

Some German words are so long that they have a perspective.

Okay, so Rotweinkuchen only has three morphemes. Rot-wein-kuchen. That’s not so bad. The recipe isn’t too complicated, either. Just incredibly delicious. So let’s cut the linguistic talk and get to baking, shall we?

Set your oven to preheat to 350 degrees and get out your favorite loaf pan. Spray it with non-stick coconut oil, and gather up these ingredients:

  • 1 stick + 6 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups [gluten-free] flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup red wine (I used a lovely pinot noir)
  • 1 cup small dark chocolate pieces (mini chocolate chips, or toss some bigger pieces in a food processor)

Beat together the sugar and butter until it’s creamy. Separate the eggs, and add the egg yolks to the sugar butter mixture one at a time, mixing after each. Add the vanilla with the last yolk.

Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. I prefer using a hand mixer for this, but you can manage it with a whisk or a fork, too. Refrigerate them until ready for use.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and cocoa with a whisk. Alternate adding this mix and the red wine to the sugar butter mixture until combined. It’ll have a nice thick texture with a red tint, and your house will start to smell amazing.

Stir in the chocolate pieces with a spatula, then fold the egg whites in until incorporated. If the egg whites have separated a bit while in the fridge, take the mixer to them again before adding them to the batter.

Spread the batter evenly in the loaf pan (should fill a little more than 3/4) and bake for one hour.

Let the cake cool (I know this is tough — it smells too good!) and get to work on the glaze. Mix 3/4 cup powdered sugar and 1–2 tbsp red wine (depending on how thick you’d like it). Once the cake is finally cool, drizzle!

Let the glaze harden a bit, take some scrumptious photos, and invite your friends over for some Kaffee und Kuchen for today’s Mittagspause (lunch break)! Oh, and send me those photos (on Instagram or Twitter!). My Rotweinkuchen is almost gone, and I’m already pining for more!

Originally published at www.sohrabandallegra.com on August 29, 2016.

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