I am reading the recipe which my mother sent to me and I am in trouble. I want to prepare kugelhopf, a cake which was one of my favorites when I was a child. It is perfect for breakfast or to the afternoon tea or you just grab a slice during the day when you need some inspiration. But this recipe is very similar to the ones which I find normally in my grandmother’s recipe book: there are only ingredients, no description, some quantities are missing, and the ingredients for the chocolate glaze are not included. I call my mother and ask her: What is the quantity of the lemon juice and the water? How much cocoa powder? How do I prepare the chocolate glaze? I try to convince her that I cannot write on my blog that “according to my feelings” or “as much as I used to add” and neither my readers will find helpful that “I use up all the Christmas and Eastern chocolate I find in the cupboard”. Slowly we put together a recipe that I can test the next day. The dough is soft and fluffy, the chocolate glaze is creamy and shiny. Perfect.
In the meantime we are restless in the garden, only take some relaxing time at the evenings. Fortunately Erzsi and Sanyi decide to prune the rosemary bush in their garden which has grown enormously since last year. Erzsi tells me that according to old tradition people used to plant a rosemary bush next to the entrance door because they believed it protects the house and the ones who live in. We go home with a big bunch of rosemary twigs and I organize them in smaller bunches for later purposes. A bunch to a vase. Another bunch for drying. Another one freshly prepared for cooking. Another one for planting to the kitchen garden and just next to our entrance door, for protection.
In our small vegetable garden I can already see the little leaves of radishes, carrots, peas and onions. The sour cherry tree and the elderflower bush are full of flowers and I think of all the jars and bottles in the pantry waiting for being filled up by syrups and marmalades.
I cut a slice of the kugelhopf and sit down at my favorite place, on the stairs at the entrance door. I leave the part which has the most chocolate glaze as the last bite so the taste can stay with me longer.
This spring has started full with promises of a beautiful season.
Kugelhopf recipe from my mother
250 g flour
10 g baking powder
250 g sugar
1 tbsp Dutch cocoa powder
100 ml sunflower oil
Juice and zests of a lemon
flour and butter to brush the mould
For the chocolate glaze:
50 ml milk
1 heaped tsp. Dutch cocoa powder
30 g butter
70 g dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 200 °C, brush a kugelhopf mould with butter and sprinkle it with some flour so you cover all the brushed surface with it. Remove any excess. Pour the lemon juice into a measuring cup and add some water so you get 100 ml liquid. Add baking powder to the flour. Separate the eggs, mix the egg yolks with the sugar until it is foamy. Add the oil, lemon zest, and the lemon juice. Beat the egg whites until it forms stiff peaks. Add the egg white in small portions to the egg yolks alternately with the flour. Pour approximately 1/3 of the mixture into the mould, mix the cocoa powder to the rest and pour the rest it also into the mould you will have a marble effect. Bake it for about 45 minutes or until it is done. You can check it by poking the cake with a toothpick or a skewer. If the skewer is dry it is done. Let the kugelhopf in the mould for 10 minutes then remove it and let it cool down completely. In the meantime bring the milk to boil in a saucepan and add all the ingredients for the chocolate glaze. Stirring continuously cook it until it is smooth and shiny. If you find it too thick, add some extra milk. Pour it on the top of the kugelhopf.