Fruit paired with cake is a magical thing, to say the least. Kuchen, traditional German yeast cake, is typically adorned with a variety of crunchy nuts, tart fruits, and creamy cheeses. A slice of this southern inspired sweet treat will have you reaching for another!
1/2 cup warm 2% reduced-fat milk (100° to 110°)
2 1/4 teaspoons dry yeast
1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 large eggs
9 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2 cups)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and divided
Baking spray with flour
1 1/2 cups seedless red grapes
2 firm peeled pears, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
Combine milk, yeast, and 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Let stand 5 minutes.
Add remaining granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon oil, vanilla, rind, salt, nutmeg, and eggs; beat with a mixer at low speed until well combined. Add flour; beat at low speed 5 minutes or until batter is smooth. Add 5 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating after each addition. Smooth batter into a 9-inch springform pan coated with baking spray. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat oven to 450°.
Combine remaining 1 tablespoon oil, grapes, and pears; arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 450° for 20 to 25 minutes or until tender. Cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 350°.
Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Combine grape mixture, butter, pecans, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Arrange mixture over dough. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 15 minutes on a wire rack. Remove from pan, and place on a serving platter. Serve with whipped topping.
*note to self* read other reviews before attempting recipe! Same thing happened to mine - all the fruit sunk down to the bottom and the juices leaked out of the spring-form pan onto the bottom of my oven. Big, smoking, stinking, mess! Flavors were pretty good; could've used some nutmeg in my opinion. Needed longer baking time as the cake was fine except for around the fruit it was under-cooked. A lot of work and I doubt I'll make it again.
Nice and interesting yeast flavor in a cake. However, at 5,500 feet, my cake rose up and swallowed my topping whole (at least it didn't then collapse like many cakes do here!). Next time I'd bake the cake for 10 minutes, then add the topping, then finish the baking.
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