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German Plum Cake (Zwetschgenkuchen)

German Plum Cake (Zwetschgenkuchen)

Plum Pie

From the southern region of Swabia, this popular German plum cake features a delicious crispy yeast crust and butter streusel topping! A twist on the traditional Plum Cobbler using summer ingredient that can be found everywhere this time of the year.

This plum cake tastes like pure heaven paired with Groundwork Muscat Frizzante

For a larger portion, use an 18” German Backblech or jelly roll pan. 



  • 1.5+ pounds Italian plums or Organic plums, cut into quarters, pits removed
  • 1/2 cup warm milk , *start with 1/2 cup and add extra to the dough as needed
  • 3/4 tablespoon dry active yeast (one packet)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/ 4 cup butter (melted but not hot)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • For the Streusel:
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter, at room temperature



  • Dissolve the yeast into the 3/4 cup warm milk and let is sit for 5-10 minutes until frothy.
  • Place the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer or use hand mixer and pour in the yeast mixture, melted warm (not hot) butter, eggs and vanilla extract. Give it an initial stir to combine the ingredients and then attach a dough hook and knead it on the bread setting ("2") for 4-5 minutes, adding the remaining 1/4 cup milk as necessary. (The dough will be sticky but should hold together fairly well. It will not be firm enough to knead into a ball, think of it more as a thick batter.) Cover it loosely with plastic wrap and set it in a warm, draft free place to rise for an hour or until about doubled in size.
  • Generously butter a German Backblech or a small jelly roll pan (at least 10 inches in length and 1 inch sides but even then the crust will be thicker than with the Backblech).
  • Use your hands to spread the dough out across the full length of the pan, pressing it up against the sides. (It's yeast dough so it will resist, but just keep pushing it back into position the best you can. Once you put the plums on it, those will help keep it in place.) Lay the plums close together in rows over the whole length of the dough on the sheet pan.
  • Set the pan in a warm place and let it rise for up to another hour.
  • To make the streusel: Place all the ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and use your fingers to bring it all together. Work with the mixture until it's thoroughly combined and forms a rough sand and clumpy texture. Sprinkle the streusel over the top of the cake.
  • Bake the cake on the middle rack of the oven preheated to 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until the top is golden.
  • Let the cake sit for at least 10 minutes before slicing to let some of the liquid set. Slice the cake into squares and serve with your favorite wine or top your cake with vanilla ice cream. 


*This cake holds up well for a day or two and is even more flavorful once the juices have absorbed into the dough.

 This recipe has been contributed by Autumn Vallecorsa of Madie's Kitchen.


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