you asked for it
A couple of days ago an anonymous commenter (I'm very sorry to hear about your mother, BTW) requested the recipe for the plum cake I made last week. If you can read German, the original recipe is from the Dr. Oetker site and here's the English translation I sent to Carol way over in Washington State. If you don't do metric, there are tons of converters out there on the web that can help you with the amounts.
Zwetschgenkuchen - Plum Cake
375 g all purpose flour
1 package dry yeast
50 g sugar (I think I would add a bit more next time because the plums were very tart)
1 package vanilla sugar or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1 pinch salt
1 medium egg
200 ml lukewarm milk
50 g butter or margerine, melted
about 2 1/2 kg Damson plums
granulated sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle on after baking
Now, I just threw the dough ingredients into my bread machine on the dough cycle and let it go to work. You can also do this by hand following the traditional yeast dough method.
When the dough has doubled in size, roll it out on a rimmed baking sheet. Mine is about 15" by 15" and the dough spread out fairly thinly. You could also do this in two springform pans, I suppose.
Halve and pit the plums, making a small cut in the narrow end of each plum half to keep them from bursting while they are baking. Then lay the plums out on the dough in an overlapping fashion.
Bake at about 400°F (200°C) for 20 - 30 minutes until dough is golden and plums seem coooked. Remove cake from oven and sprinkle with sugar (mixed with a bit of cinnamon if you like) after it has cooled down a bit. Nice served with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
And then...the lovely Maribeth asked for the Schweinshaxe recipe and I thought I'd share it with all of you.
I found the recipe here at Marions Kochbuch which has tons of other great German recipes. Here's a translation so everyone can get in on the fun.
Schweinshaxe - Pork Hocks
1 kg (about 2 lbs) pork hocks
20 g (4 tsps) pork lard (I used olive oil!)
1 bay leaf
1 tsp juniper berries
1/2 tsp whole cloves
1 tsp whole mustard seeds
1/4 L (1 cup) water
1/8 L (1/2 cup) beer
2 tsp cornstarch
Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Slash fat and skin on pork hock in a diamond pattern and season with salt, pepper and paprika. Heat fat in a large dutch oven and brown hocks well on all sides for about 10 minutes. Peel and quarter onion and add to pot along with spices. Pour 1/8 L boiling water over all and place uncovered in oven. Roast for about one hour, turning hocks occasionally and basting with some of the beer. Add a bit more water if necessary. When done, remove hocks from dutch oven and deglaze pot with remaining water and beer. Bring to a boil and add cornstarch, stirring until thickened. Season with pepper and salt to taste.
Et voilà! (or viola, as some people on the internet have been known to say) Your guests will think you just came back from Bavaria.