Austrian cuisine in the modern times has picked up regional varieties from the neighboring Hungary, Germany and Italy while traditionally it grew in the Austro-Hungarian empire. Its capital Vienna has grown into an important city of the European Union and just like other European cities it is common to see many number of restaurants lining up in the center. Some of the common and famous dishes served in Austria include Wiener Schnitzel, Apfelstrudel, Kaiserschmarrn, Germknodel, Gugelhupf, various types of sausages, game meats such as duck, brown hare, deer, wild boar etc. Coffee is also consumed in large quantities with typical ones being Wiener Eiskaffe, Melange & Einspanner along with other world known common ones like espresso & cappuccino.
For my recipe in this article I picked up Gugelhupf, a ring shaped cake usually served with coffee. You can find Gugelhupf in other European countries like Germany, France, Switzerland, Hungary etc, however it is truly Austrian and in fact it represented Austria on Europe Day in 2006. This cake is made of soft yeast batter while I added raisins soaked in brandy for my preparations. You can also soak other fruits in rum or brandy and use them as the fillings. This cake is prepared in a special Gugelhupf Mould or a bundt pan, giving it the shape. It is really soft to eat and tastes delicious with a cup of coffee. So if you are looking to make something Austrian, Gugelhupf is a perfect recipe to try out. I'm sure you would love the taste and preparation.
Ingredients (makes 1 loaf)
- Milk - 1/2 cup
- Sugar - 5 tbsp
- Active dry yeast - 2 & 1/4 tsp
- All purpose flour - 1 & 1/2 cup
- Unsalted butter - 6 tbsp
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Lemon zest - 2 tsp
- Vanilla extract - 1 tsp
- Eggs - 2
- Baking powder - 1 tsp
- Raisins - 1/2 cup
- Brandy - 1/4 cup
- Sugar powder for dusting
- Soak the raisins in brandy for about an hour. Keep aside.
- Mix milk, 1 tbsp sugar, active dry yeast and 1/4 cup all purpose flour, cover and keep aside for about 90 minutes.
- Mix remaining sugar with unsalted butter and whisk till light and fluffy.
- Add lemon zest, vanilla and salt and mix till combine.
- Add egg 1 at a time and mix well.
- Add yeast mixture and mix well.
- Add remaining flour and baking powder and beat for 2 minutes.
- Add raisins and brandy and pour the mixture into a greased Gugelhupf mould/ bundt pan. Cover & keep aside for an hour.
- Pre heat the oven to 180 C.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes till a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool on a cooling rack.
- Dust with powdered sugar & serve.