Babovka – Czech Marble Cake

Czech Bábovka or Marble cake is typical sweet bakery product. Many people remember the time when they were children and there was always a marble cake on their grandmother’s kitchen table. Most people prepare a two-coloured cake with dark and light parts, hence the term marble cake. You can add a lot of ingredients into the dough to make your marble cake unique, e.g. raisins, candied, chocolate or nuts. Marble cake is baked in a special form with a hole in the middle and it is decorated by sprinkling with powder sugar.

Ingredients

  • 330g of soft wheat flour
  • 330g of icing sugar
  • 125ml of milk
  • 180g of butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 spoon of cocoa
  • 1 spoon of baking soda

Directions

  1. Put softened butter, sugar and yolks to the bowl and stir it together. You can do it manually or use a food processor.
  2. Mix flour, sugar and baking soda together and then add slowly this mix into the yolk mixture and mix it together.
  3. Make whipped egg whites and add it into the dough using spatula.
  4. Separate one third of dough, put there a cocoa and mix it. Now you have a dark part of dough.
  5. Grease a form for a marble cake using butter and then sprinkle the form with flour.
  6. Put one part of the light dough into the form and then the dark dough and finally a rest of the light dough.
  7. Give the form in preheated oven 180°C (F) for 50minutes.
  8. Tip! Use wooden skewer to try if the marble cake is ready. Stick the wooden sticker into the highest place of the cake and if there isn´t a dough on a stick, your marble cake is ready.
  9. Take the form out of the oven and after 5 minutes you can put it out of the form and sprinkle it with sugar.

Marble Cake Form

Marble Cake Form




Bublanina – Cherry Sponge Cake

Bublanina is a classic sponge cake baked during summer season. Mainly during season of cherries, strawberries and other berries. You can say that this sponge cake can be made with almost every fruit from people’s gardens – cherry, plums, strawberries, raspberries, peaches and so on. It’s fluffy and ideal with your afternoon tea or coffee.

Ingredients

  • 350 g of soft wheat flour
  • 6 eggs
  • 100 g of butter
  • 200 g of sugar
  • 1 vanilla sugar
  • 50 g of powdered sugar
  • baking powder
  • 400 g of cherries

Directions

  1. Mix butter with sugar and vanilla sugar and gradually add yolks.
  2. Whip egg whites and powdered sugar.
  3. Mix yolk mixture with whipped eggs and flour with baking powder.
  4. Put dough in baking tray (greased and dusted with flour) and lay pitted cherries on top.
  5. Bake in preheated oven 160°C (320°F) for 40 minutes.
  6. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.




Apple Strudel

Apple strudel is traditional Czech pastry that have its origin in Austrian cuisine. It’s very popular dessert in Czech cuisine and across Central Europe thanks to history of Austro-Hungarian Empire. Apple strudel is quite easy to prepare thanks to the option of buying prepared pastry dough. However old-fashioned people still make their own dough.

Ingredients

  • Phyllo or flaky pastry
  • 4-6 apples
  • cinnamon sugar
  • egg
  • powdered sugar
  • raisins, walnuts (optional)

Directions

  1. Roll out pastry in slim rectangle.
  2. Grate apples and put them on dough. Add raisins or chopped walnuts if you want.
  3. Sprinkle apples with cinnamon sugar.
  4. Roll up dough into long cylinder and close both ends.
  5. At last brush strudel with whisked egg.
  6. Put in preheated oven 200°C (390°F) for about 20 minutes until strudel has nice golden color.
  7. Dust with powdered sugar. Apple strudel can be served with whipped cream.




Medovník – Czech Honey Cake

Medovník is traditional Czech honey cake. Honey is its integral ingredient and thank to its attributes provides long durability. Medovník is very popular dessert in Czech restaurants and sometimes presented as birthday cake.

Ingredients

  • 1 can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 280g of butter
  • 1 spoon of baking soda
  • 1 egg
  • 2 spoons of honey
  • 100g of icing sugar
  • 200g of flour
  • walnuts
  • coffee with rum

Directions

  1. In double boiler warm 30g of butter, egg, honey and sugar. Stir and slowly add sifted flour and baking soda.
  2. Knead into a dough and let rest for a few minutes.
  3. Divide dough in 5 parts. Roll each part slim on floured rolling board and cut in the round shape of cake. From offcuts roll 6th slice.
  4. Put slices on parchment paper and bake in 180°C oven for 4-5 minutes.
  5. Cream is made with butter and condensed milk. Mix soft butter in blender and little by little add condensed milk. Try to boil the condensed milk in can for 2 hours the day before.
  6. When the slices cool off, brush them with mixture of coffee and rum.
  7. Cover first slice with cream and repeat with each layer. Cover sides with cream and sprinkle top and sides with chopped walnuts and crumbs from offcuts.
  8. Put in fridge for at least a night.




Typical Czech Cuisine

Czech cuisine is famous for its varieties of meat, which plays the main role on a plate, and further for the variety of delicious sauces, dumplings and soups.

Local tastes

As in every countryCzech_fried_cheese, the traditional cuisine of the Czech Republic is given by its location, its climate and crops which find favourable conditions in this area. It is no wonder then that in this moderate climate with large water areas, many rivers and forests the typical meals consist of field crops, vegetables and game. The Czech cuisine is also rich in mushrooms, for the Czechs are quite keen mushroom pickers and the climate in this country, as well as in the most Central Europe, is just perfect for growth of mushrooms. When it comes to desserts then, the Czech land is rich in many kinds of pulp fruit and berries used in cakes together with curd cheese, walnut and poppy seed. One of the main characteristics of Czech cuisine is that the meal usually consists of a soup and a main course. The soup has quite often a form of broth with various ingredients, mostly vegetables according to the season, and pastinas. Thickened soups are also very common and traditional way of preparation. As a thickener the Czechs usually use roux of flour and the most typical ingredients are legumes, sausages or giblets. This kind of soup can be served as a main course with bread. Traditional soups include for example the potato soup, bean soup, lentil soup, cabbage soup, mushroom soup, fish soup – which many households hold for their traditional Christmas soup, and so on. Another typical feature of Czech cuisine is meat, the Czechs hardly pass a day without a proper portion of meat for lunch. Traditional meat on a Czech table is pork, poultry, beef, fish. Veal and mutton are rarer in use and in regions with gamekeeping tradition it is not a problem, in certain seasons, to have a nice boar or roe deer noisette. On festive occasions, the Czechs mostly relish roast mallard or goose with cabbage and dumplings. As you can see, the range is pretty wide. The ways of preparation, on the other hand, are to a certain extent alike. It is mostly roasting or frying – as our favourite schnitzel or anything covered with breadcrumbs or as the typical and almost legendary Czech fried cheese.

 

Sauces and side dish

utopenci

What mostly comes with meat is either potatoes, which have rooted in the Czech cuisine really deeply since they were brought form the US, or the already mentioned fluffy dumplings. Czech cookery is also known for its almost excessive use of various sauces. These sauces are prepared on béchamel-like basis

and the most traditional ones are the dill sauce, tomato sauce, mushroom sauce, paprika sauce and the very favourite cream sauce which is made with root vegetable and goes so well with sirloin, lemon and cranberries. Apart from these quite heavy on flour and cream sauces, there are variants as the side dish to meat. Mostly it is vegetables such as stewed spinach or cabbage.

Snacks and desserts

In pubs you can order also small snacks with your beer. The most traditional and omnipotent ones are a pickled bratwurst called the ‘drown man’, pickled camembert-like cheese usually with a pepperoni, very often you can also have a garlic toast, and of course that it would not be a proper pub without a proper goulash, although it is originally a Hungarian meal. As a dessert you can have a strudel, which is also borrowed, from Austria this time, but has long ago found its place on Czech tables. Typical are various kinds of cakes with fruit fillings made of plums, cherries, peaches, apples, blueberries and so on; or with poppy seed, walnut, curd cheese and raisins. In Wallachia you can find more kinds in one big cake called ‘frgál’ which was included in the European Commission’s list of products with protected geographical indication quite recently.

So, as you can easily conclude, Czech cuisine is not of the healthiest ones. The amount of meat, cream based sauces, and also smoked meats and sausages, etc., makes it quite heavy but very, very rich in nutrition. Yet it has its tradition and if done really properly and well, it has its unmistakeable magic. The traditional meals can be found in almost every restaurant. It is still good, though, to find a better place to taste the real sweet smoothness of cream sauce with a slice of sirloin, good roast duck with red cabbage and bread dumplings, or a really nice mushroom soup.




Buchteln – Czech Sweet Buns

Buchteln or in Czech “Buchty” are traditional filled sweet buns made mainly by grandmas at countryside. Most popular fillings are plum jam, curd cheese and poppy seeds. Main character in almost every Czech fairytale packed these buns for his adventurous trip.

Ingredients

  • 20g of yeast
  • 250ml of milk
  • 60g of sugar
  • 250g of fine wheat flour
  • 250g of soft wheat flour
  • 2 yolks
  • 60g of butter
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 spoon of rum
  • pinch of salt
  • 80g of butter – use to oil the pan
  • icing sugar (powdered sugar)

Directions

  1. Heat up part of milk and blend in yeast, spoon of sugar and spoon of flour. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  2. Whip yolks  in remaining milk. Sift flour into bowl, add mixture from point 1, whiped yolks, sugar and butter. Add lemon peel, lemon juice, rum and salt and make into a dough. Cover dough with cloth and let rest for 1 hour in a warm place.
  3. Divide dough to small portions with a spoon. Make flat and add filling of your choice (poppy seed, curd cheese, plum jam).
  4. Join the corners together into the shape of bun and put it in the butter oiled pan (joined corners down). Butter every bun a bit. Before baking let rest for 20 minutes.
  5. Put in preheated oven 180°C (356°F) and bake for about 30 minutes until they have golden color.
  6. At last dust with icing sugar. Dobrou chuť!