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Gugelhupf/Kugelhopf/Bundt Cake


Amy Eber
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One of my most prized possessions is a copper Kugelhopf pan my Bavarian grandmother brought on the ship to America with her when she and my Swiss grandfathEr immigrated. One of my most vivid childhood memories is the smell of Kugelhopf (as she called it) and coffee that welcomed us on every visit to their home in Scranton, Pennsylvania. I brought it with me when I moved to Zurich, Switzerland last year and have not thought too much about it since our arrival other than when I pass the bakeries and see a childhood favorite in the window.

My interest in all things Kugelhopf/Gugelhupf/Bundt-related was ignited last month when our nearly blind, elderly, Swiss neighbor's health began rapidly failing and her family had no choice but to move her into an old age home. As the family began clearing out almost a century of possession, I rescued an old Swiss copper Gugelhupf pan (as the Swiss family called it) destined for the trash. I lovingly cleaned it and hung it on the wall alongside my Grandmother's pan.

I have now begun a passionate research project trying to learn all I can about this beloved cake, both in Europe and America. Recipes, traditions, family stories, explanations of pan shapes and great books are all of interest. I teach cooking and baking classes and always think it is interesting for students to give them a sense of the history and origin of food. I would really love to hear from anyone who has a beloved recipe or insight. Thanks. Amy

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One of my most prized possessions is a copper Kugelhopf pan my Bavarian grandmother brought on the ship to America with her when she and my Swiss grandfathEr immigrated.  One of my most vivid childhood memories is the smell of Kugelhopf (as she called it) and coffee that welcomed us on every visit to their home in Scranton, Pennsylvania.  I brought it with me when I moved to Zurich, Switzerland last year and have not thought too much about it since our arrival other than when I pass the bakeries and see a childhood favorite in the window.

My interest in all things Kugelhopf/Gugelhupf/Bundt-related was ignited last month when our nearly blind, elderly, Swiss neighbor's health began rapidly failing and her family had no choice but to move her into an old age home.  As the family began clearing out almost a century of possession, I rescued an old Swiss copper Gugelhupf pan (as the Swiss family called it) destined for the trash.  I lovingly cleaned it and hung it on the wall alongside my Grandmother's pan.

I have now begun a passionate research project trying to learn all I can about this beloved cake,  both in Europe and America.  Recipes, traditions, family stories, explanations of pan shapes and great books are all of interest.  I teach cooking and baking classes and always think it is interesting for students to give them a sense of the history and origin of food.  I would really love to hear from anyone who has a beloved recipe or insight.  Thanks.  Amy

Hi Amy,

I am a great fan of Kugelhopfs (various spellings) and have three ceramic molds from Alsace. The books I have call it a Viennese specialty although the Germans and Alsacians claim it as well. Rick Rodgers, in Kaffeehaus, says the design goes back to Roman times. More commonly you hear that the shape represents a Turkish turban and eating sybolizes eating the enemy (they were defeated by the Austrians in the mid 17th century). I'll bet there aren't many Austrians or Alsacians that think of that as they have their cake and coffee.

Make one, you'll love it with coffee and butter. Especially during a Swiss winter!

Good luck, Woods in sunny Florida.

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I bake them all of the time but have never used a ceramic pan. Do they bake the same or must you adjust temperature and time? I have my grandmother's recipe and some other older recipes I am working on.

Bakeries here in Zurich sell both yeast and non-yeast versions although I always make the non-yeast. During holidays, some bakeries sell flamboyantly decorated ones. They are covered in brightly-colored candies and candied flowers.

One of my most prized possessions is a copper Kugelhopf pan my Bavarian grandmother brought on the ship to America with her when she and my Swiss grandfathEr immigrated.  One of my most vivid childhood memories is the smell of Kugelhopf (as she called it) and coffee that welcomed us on every visit to their home in Scranton, Pennsylvania.  I brought it with me when I moved to Zurich, Switzerland last year and have not thought too much about it since our arrival other than when I pass the bakeries and see a childhood favorite in the window.

My interest in all things Kugelhopf/Gugelhupf/Bundt-related was ignited last month when our nearly blind, elderly, Swiss neighbor's health began rapidly failing and her family had no choice but to move her into an old age home.  As the family began clearing out almost a century of possession, I rescued an old Swiss copper Gugelhupf pan (as the Swiss family called it) destined for the trash.  I lovingly cleaned it and hung it on the wall alongside my Grandmother's pan.

I have now begun a passionate research project trying to learn all I can about this beloved cake,  both in Europe and America.  Recipes, traditions, family stories, explanations of pan shapes and great books are all of interest.  I teach cooking and baking classes and always think it is interesting for students to give them a sense of the history and origin of food.  I would really love to hear from anyone who has a beloved recipe or insight.  Thanks.  Amy

Hi Amy,

I am a great fan of Kugelhopfs (various spellings) and have three ceramic molds from Alsace. The books I have call it a Viennese specialty although the Germans and Alsacians claim it as well. Rick Rodgers, in Kaffeehaus, says the design goes back to Roman times. More commonly you hear that the shape represents a Turkish turban and eating sybolizes eating the enemy (they were defeated by the Austrians in the mid 17th century). I'll bet there aren't many Austrians or Alsacians that think of that as they have their cake and coffee.

Make one, you'll love it with coffee and butter. Especially during a Swiss winter!

Good luck, Woods in sunny Florida.

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