Foodiva's Kitchen: German Chocolate Streusel Cake Rabbits - Schokostreusel Kuchen

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

German Chocolate Streusel Cake Rabbits - Schokostreusel Kuchen

I first took up cycling as a sport about 5 years ago and during the first few outings on my brand new bicycle, I remember feeling out of sync with both the bike and the cycling group I was training with. Many a time, I felt uncomfortable and unsure (read: unsafe) on my seat and struggled to keep up with the intensity of the group's pace. In fact, on the very first road outing I had a slight accident that ended up in me somersaulting over my handlebars and launching the bike into the air, only to have it land back on well, me. Thank goodness it was a very light bike! So even while I nursed my bruises and attempted to conceal the tear on my shirt the size of Australia, I was secretly grateful that my bike suffered only a tiny scratch from the incident :).

Then one day, one of the 'pros' who had taken it upon himself to be my cycling buddy said something I would remember to this day. What he said was, "To be able to cycle well and efficiently, you have to be  one with your bicycle. You have to think of it as an extension of your body". Now does that make sense to you? Because it didn't to me back then, as I had no clue how to start being one with my bike at all. 

Now that I'm no longer such a novice, I'm comfortable going off on solo rides. And this very morning, something rather special happened. You've seen how Lance Armstrong throws his arms up in the air at the finishing line in the 'look-ma-no-hands' style? Well, I managed to do the same and found that I could keep the bike perfectly balanced by shifting my body ever so slightly. I must've been comfortable enough, one enough with my machine to have been able to do that! Those of you who work in the circus must be thinking, yawn...big deal... but for someone who's tried to achieve this for the best part of several decades, it's a small miracle that it's finally happened.

With baking, it was the same thing. My first year of baking was full of hits and misses, probably more of the latter, to be truthful. I wasn't comfortable with my skills and had very little experience to speak of when it came to combining flavors, or textures. For a while, I had to endure witnessing my poor colleagues politely spit bits of cakes, breads and cookies into their napkins because they tasted so awful! I had to endure? Imagine what they had to

Well, now that I'm one with my baking skills, I'm more able to play around with ingredients in the kitchen. And the results don't turn out too badly (most of the time). I can also afford to focus on making the food look more fun and attractive. Like today for example, where I decided to bake this easy German Chocolate Streusel Cake inside parchment paper rabbits.

Fatter rabbits after baking!

I first came across this recipe in Germany, on the back of a box of Dr. Oetker Baking Powder. It's been a while since I last baked this delicious cake but I was recently prompted by my cousin Aimi's tweets saying that she wanted to see some German recipes on this blog. 

The cake itself is dense and buttery while the chocolate topping is crunchy, a beautiful mix of textures. If you were to use a springform pan, it would take about an hour altogether to prep and bake it. But if you want to bake it inside these muffin-sized paper rabbits, the baking time gets cut down to 20 minutes. The origami part, depending on your paper-folding skills, will probably take more than an hour :). I struggled with the first rabbit, but after that it gets easier and if you're not careful, these little rabbits tend to proliferate! Now I don't celebrate Easter but it's nice to go along with the seasonal theme and these cake rabbits fit the bill.

Here's a YouTube video with clear folding instructions for the paper rabbits. Good luck! :)

Easy German Chocolate Streusel Cake - Schokostreusal Kuchen
Makes one 10 or 11-inch springform pan cake, or 10 muffin-sized rabbits
1/3 cup sugar (75 grams)
5 tablespoons butter (75 grams)
1/8 tsp. salt
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoons lemon extract (optional)
1 1/8 cups flour (150 grams)
1/4 cup potato starch or corn starch (50 grams)
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
4 tablespoons milk

1/4 cup apricot or raspberry jam

Chocolate Streusel
1/3 cup cocoa (30 grams)
1/3 cup sugar (80 grams)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
11 tablespoons butter (100 grams)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/8 cup flour (150 grams)

1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F.
2. Cream sugar, butter and salt. Add egg and flavor extracts and mix well.
3. Sift flour, starch and baking powder together and add to batter, mixing well.
4. Add enough milk to form a medium thick batter (like brownie batter). Spread into a 11-inch springform pan which has been buttered and floured lightly.
5. Heat the jam for 30 seconds on high in the microwave until it becomes runny. Stir and then carefully spread over cake batter.
6. Make the streusel by rubbing all the ingredients together with your fingers. You may also use a pie dough cutter or two forks. Continue until large crumbs form. Sprinkle evenly over cake batter.
7. Bake at 350°F for about 40 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean and cake springs bake when touched lightly. (About 20 minutes for the rabbit muffins)
8. Remove from oven and cool. Remove outer ring after 5-10 minutes so the edges don't become soggy.


Gerry @Foodness Gracious said...

Nice cakes and great patience folding all of that paper! I bike ride too in fact I just got home from a ride, I'm training for a century ride in October for my daughters JDRF team. I need to do some more training, or buy a new seat :(
Take care..

Foodiva said...

Oh, bake AND you bike. And you're a Rod Stewart fan. This is WHY we need to be neighbors! (PS. you probably need the wider seats for ahem, ladies...LOL)

Lizzy said...

Beautifully done, Maya! I think you can now consider yourself a marvelous baker!!! Only a pro could pull these off so perfectly. xoxo

Tina said...

Trials and tribulations do pay off. I am sure you would have never thought you would be comfortable on a bike, but here you are-no fear!
Love these rabbits, very creative what you have done with the paper-perfect for Easter. Also, the recipe looks like a winner. Great example of your talents. Have a wonderful day!

Cher Rockwell said...

If something has to multiply like rabbits, this is probably the right type of thing :-)
The last time I was on a bike was in high school - I wonder if I still know how?

Ei said...

Those are adorable--and well outside the realm of my paper-folding skills. lol That's great that you finally became one with your bike. I've recently tried to start running (I have my first 5k on saturday. I'm terrified.) I anxiously await the day that I "forget to check my watch" while running. HA! It'll be a while. hahaha

Sandra M. said...

My son loves Origami and he is pretty good..will show him the video!
I am proud of you achievement Maya! It is great feeling! also your streusel cake look incredible..I can imagine very moist and delicious too!

jen laceda said...

oh, these are so cute!! the rabbits are perfect for Easter!

ok, your post really hit the spot with me. that's how i feel about my baking, my photography, ...and my biking. i'm really unsure with riding a bike. i don't trust myself, so i can't even put my child on a bike seat. it's really too bad, because i'll be able to get around more without relying on a car! maybe next year, i will work on it!

Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts said...

These are so cute! What a fun idea, I am sure kids would especially love this for Easter!
Glad you have come a long way on your bike.

Priscilla @ShesCookin said...

I love your mentors advice: be one with the bike! I went on a bike trip with a group of ladies in the Netherlands last year and, trust me, I am a total novice. Fortunately, the bike tours are geared for all levels ;) German chocolate cake with streusel sounds divine - I applaud you and your son for the adorable origami rabbits.

Pacheco Patty said...

I was looking forward to seeing your chocolate streusel cake rabbits! Each one is a special treat that unfolds in your hands and into your mouth, yum! I like the idea of sharing German baking recipes, there are so many good ones! I admire you riding your bike and gaining confidence;-)

Kiri W. said...

Schokostreuselkuchen! Yay! :) Dr. Oetker is the best, and embodies baking for me - lovely recipe!

Torviewtoronto said...

lovely post
origami video looks wonderful

Torviewtoronto said...

lovely post
origami video looks wonderful

Amy said...

These sound delicious! I love the oragami rabbits, so adorable! This would be perfect for an Easter brunch!

Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} said...

You're a really talented baker Maya. As much as I love to bake I'm so clumsy when it comes to crafts it would take me years to do the rabbit paper cups. said...

Oh your bike accident made me hurt. Glad you had a great moment being able to balance your bike with no hands. We all have special moments when we finally get something and it feel good, congrats. Your bunnies look so delicious, I wouldn't mind the Easter bunny bringing me one :)

Nami | Just One Cookbook said...

As always you are so creative!!! My 5-year old son is crazy about Origami now. I had to make a crab today. I'm the one who bought the origami book for him but end up making myself... Your chocolate streusel looks so yummy. I wish my origami can come with your delicious cake! ;-)

easyfoodsmith said...

I am in awe of people who can ride a, I mean it. I fell once while learning as an 8 year old, badly bruised myself and till date can't ride a bicycle. I can imagine the thrill you must have felt.

The cake rabbits sound such fun! Love the chocolate streusel. Lovely post

Jean (Lemons and Anchovies) said...

Maya, you're a cyclist, too! :) It's my favorite activity though I have been off the bike in a couple of months--longest stretch of time I've neglected my bike in 12 years. I can't wait to start again soon. So nice to know this about you. I know what you mean about the hands-free cycling. I still haven't mastered it and I get so jealous because my husband and some of our friends do it so well. One day. :)

These little cakes are gorgeous!

TheChocolatePriestess said...

What a cute way to wrap them!

tanja said...

What a cute way to present a Streuselkuchen Maya! I am sure that every kid will LOVE them! My Origami skills are not that good, but the cvideo is very helpful , so that I will give it a try :)
A perfect treat for Easter!

Spicie Foodie said...

I'm so proud of you for the no hands riding :) I'm such a klutz that if I attempted it the result would be like your first ride. You inspire me to keep pushing with baking, I have so much to go.

Your little rabbits are so cute :) Loving the recipe and the crunch top sounds delish!

Daisy@Nevertoosweet said...

Oh yum! I love all products from Dr. Oetker but I've actually never seen this recipe hehe :) It looks great though! And wow the rabbits look so so so cute!!!!

Vicki Bensinger said...

Maya you and I have so much in common I think it's amazing especially being born on the same day. In fact what time were you born? I was born at 11:11am.

Anyway I love biking and over the summer bike 3 hours a day through the mountains and of course you know I love to cook along with liking many of the same music and movies. However I'm horrible when it comes to origami but then I've never really done it much.

You rabbit cakes look and sound fantastic. Great video.

Did you ever get the email I sent to you? Are you baking a cake for your birthday? If so what kind?

Tobias @ T and Tea Cake said...

How on earth did I miss this one? ;)

I smiled a little to myself when you mentioned you took this recipe from a Dr. Oetker baking powder box. Dr. Oetker is a bit like a mixture between Betty Crocker and Julia Child to Germans and the recipes are never a miss. You did a great job converting the measurements (I usually take the save road and write everything in oz. as the gram to cups conversion can be very tricky and time-consuming). You know what? A bakery not too far from me sells cakes very similar to yours baked and sold in parchment paper (sans the cute little origami bunny outfit) and they are to die for! Not too sweet and wonderully moist. I bet yours are even better. ;)

Advices like becoming one with a bike always sound weird to me. I don't want to merge with my bicycle - bet sleeping would be quite uncomfortable that way. :P


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