Summer is here. Bake something summery :)

November 16, 2011

Coconut and Lemon Quark Cheese Mini Bundt Cakes

I've just returned home and I can say I feel as if I met Father Frost :D It's truly is SO cold outside here. Two or three days ago I'd go out wearing sneakers, no gloves or scarves but that's gone for the next two or three months. Anyway, I bought some cool Christmas decorations (the edible ones included even though these won't last for more than a week as I love eating them :D). I'm officially in....the right Christmas mood. However, before I start adding recipes for Christmas cookies simply I can't leave you without these irresistible bundt cakes.


Bundt cake comes from Europe where it's well-known in almost every single country. In my country it's called "bábovka" (read bah-b-off-kah) and it is one of the most popular desserts here. In fact, many people associate it with their childhood and family Sunday afternoon. I remeber eating bábovka every time I visited my granny in the highlands. She would prepare a cream bábovka (made from whipping cream). On the other hand, my grandpa would make a bundt cake in microwaveoven (believe you me, it's one of the best!). To make it short, a bundt cake is evergreen which can be made in 1000 ways and always tastes fantastic :)

Just to give you some more interesting info about this fabulous dessert, here you the names for bundt cakes in other countries (notice that most of the names come from German):

  • Gugelhupf - or Gugelhopf, that's how they call it in southern Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Alsace; "Gugel" is a variation of German "kugel" (ball, globe) and "hupf" comes from the verb "hupfen" (jump)
  • Babka - bundt cake in Poland
  • Bábovka - our Czech and Slovak name for the cake
  • Bundt Cake - that's how you know it, by the way the term comes from German
  • Guguluf - quite a funny name which is used in Romania
  • Kouglof - French "bundt cake"
  • куглоф - can be written as kuglof, used in Macedonia
  • Kugelhopf - this way they call it in the rest of Germany
  • Kuglof - bundt cake in Hungary, Croatia and western Slovenia
  • Kugluh - bundt cake in central and eastern Slovenia
  • Tulband - or Gebak is used in the Netherlands
  • Wacker - also known as Wacka is bundt cake in Upper Austria

    Not that I would care too much about it :D Even though it is made differently in every country and family, the basics are the same: dough or batter that rises a lot during baking in a typical bundt cake baking pan/form. I think I can say that the whole world loves it :D


    And what exactly made me bake these mini bundt cakes? The very first thing is that I bought some nice mini bundt cake pans in June but I didn't use them till September. Well and then I saw a wonderful black&white quark bundt cake recipe on Coco-Choc's blog and I couldn't resist! I found a lot of inspiration in her recipe and I'm so glad for giving them a try. Thank you! I love quark cheese, moist cakes, I have the pans, I have had enough time...so I started thinking about new flavours immediately. And almost in no time the bundt cakes were baked devoured :D


    First of all I discovered a huge lot of coconut in my pantry and then a lot of organic lemons and finally even a box of vanilla pods so I combined all of it (figuratively speaking). Later on, in my oven there were the-best-I-have-ever-eaten bundt cakes baking. I'm not kidding but I'll keep the rest for the verdict :)


    Ingredients:
    150g (2/3 cup) unsalted butter
    250g (2 cups) vanilla powdered sugar
    4 eggs, room temperature
    500g (2 1/4 cups) quark cheese
    200g (1 cup+1 tbsp) finely ground semolina
    12g (1 tbsp) baking powder
    a pinch of salt
    60g (3/4 cup) desiccated coconut
    2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
    grated lemon zest from 1 lemon
    butter for greasing
    desiccated coconut for flouring
    Icing:
    2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
    about 70g (2/3 cup) sifted powdered sugar

    Directions:
    In a mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar and egg yolks until light and fluffy, add quark cheese and beat until creamy. In another bowl, combine semolina with baking powder. Add the semolina mixture into the quark mixture. Whisk egg whites with salt until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the whisked egg whites into the batter. Now divide the batter into two parts: add coconut into one part and lemon juice+lemon zest into the second one. Carefully grease the baking pans with butter and flour them with coconut. Now layer the dough into the pans (start with lemon dough, then layer of coconut batter, again lemon batter etc.). Smooth the surface evenly (make sure you have more batter around the edges so that it doesn't rise into a huge hill in the middle as it bakes). Bake in preheated oven to 175C for 30-35 minutes until golden. Do not open the oven for the first 15 minutes, otherwise the cakes may collapse. Let cool for 10 minutes, decorate with icing and serve.
    Icing: In a bowl, whisk sugar and lemon juice. Add more sugar if needed to get a slowly pouring consistency.

    • I make my own vanilla sugar this way: for 250g powdered sugar I add 4 to 5 vanilla pods and I let this mixture sit in an airtight container for at least 1 week, but feel free to use seeds from vanilla pod in case you don't have vanilla powdered sugar.
    • If you don't have mini bundt cakes, simply use your ordinary large bundt cake pan - the batter is exactly for 8 mini bundt cakes or one regular bundt cake.
    Verdict:
    As I have mentioned above, these are the best bundt cakes I have ever eaten. Very moist, juicy with strong coconut flavour and fresh lemon taste. It's not overly sweet, just the perfect level of sweetness and when you add the icing...it can't be expressed by words :D The batter is soft, not at all dry, has wonderful aroma during baking you can smell coconut, vanilla and lemon all over your kitchen. And the beautiful yellow color (okay, that's probably because of the eggs which I got from my granny) reminds me hot summer (and not fall). Make them ASAP, because this bundt cake is out of this world :D


    Linked to:
    Sweet Tooth Friday
    Sweets for a Saturday
    Sweet Indulgences Sunday
    These Chicks Cooked

    19 comments:

    1. I love these mini bundt cakes!! so much!! gloria

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    2. Just wanted to let you know I nominated your blog for the Liebster award. Check it out when you have a minute!

      http://pinchofthisthatandtheother.blogspot.com/2011/11/liebster-blog-award.html

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    3. Oh, I LOVE your Bundt pans!! SO cool! And your cakes look delish....love the coconut-lemon combo. Hope you have a great weekend...it's COLD here, too~

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    4. Simply adorable! I was very intrigued by the reference to a microwave oven cooking option. Anyway, your mini cakes look just beautiful.

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    5. Wow Catalina, this look delicious! Your photos are so beautiful! I'm always so impressed with your blog :)

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    6. Oh Catalina, you've done it again! Several of your recipes are on my to-bake wish list. And this one is there too!
      By the way, do you think I could use regular flour for this, instead of semolina?

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    7. I love that you get your own, no sharing! They sound wonderful.

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    8. Gloria, Ayşe: Thank you both so much :))

      ryobious: Thank you!! It made my day so much better and I'm really happy that you like my blog! Thank you :)

      Lizzy: Yeah, the weather truly is cold..very cold :D Thank you a bunch :)

      Simona: Thank you :) Personally I have never tried making my bundt cake in the microwave, but my granda can't recommend it enough (I'll have to give it a try).

      Bites of Sweetness: Oh, thank you so much for a comment this beautiful!!

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    9. Hi Catalina,
      I love cake! Those little bunt cakes look delicious. And, your photos are great!
      -Lynn

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    10. Your cakes are like pure sunshine.

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    11. Bundle Wade: I'm so happy to hear this :) As for your question, the best option is semolina flour because it not so finely ground and can absorb more liquid than all-purpose flour. However, I think you might try using your regular flour (then I'd probably adjust baking time on slightly lower temp - to make sure the flour has enough time to absorb the liquid from quark and so on :)). Let me know how it turns out :)

      sue: Oh, yes, no sharing is the best! I'm kidding, it's nice to share but in this case, it's pretty good to have your own because it's so good :D Thank you :)

      Lynn: Thank you, Lynn! I'm glad you like them :)

      Lisa: Thank you so much, Lisa :)

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    12. Catalina, these look so yummy. I love babovky of any kind, but these ones are amazing.

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    13. Hi Catalina! Your beautiful mini cakes were #1 on last week's Sweet Indulgences Sunday. Hope you'll share again this week.

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    14. Oh my, these are gorgeous! I know they taste divine too...love both flavors so much. Thank you for sharing.

      I just found your blog and so happy I did! I'm a new follower and I'm anxious to see more of your creations.

      Stop by and say hi when you can ~

      Pat

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    15. I love your blog! And these mini bundt cakes; they look delicious.

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    16. These are so gorgeous! And the second time today I've seen dessicated coconut - must look that up. :)

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    17. Beautiful! :) I am a big fan of coconut (Well, I come from the land of coconut trees!) and I can devour some of these yummy slices from the screen!

      Can I substitute fresh grated coconut in place of dessicated coconut? Any other kind of cheese works in place of quark cheese? Thanks for sharing the recipe and the tempting pictures! :)

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    18. Ms Bibi: Thank you! Oh, yes, babovky are amazing :D

      Kim McCallie: Kim, thank you so much for letting me know! My day is so much better thanks to that :)

      Pat: I'm really happy you like my blog and the recipe! Thank you for following, I can't wait to check out your site :))

      kyleen: Thank you a lot! I can assure you - they do taste divine :D

      Courtney @ Misadventures in Cooking: Thank you :) Dessicated coconut is dried grated coconut :)

      DV: Thanks! Coconut is my big love, too :D As for the coconut, yes, you can - I'd love to use fresh grated coconut as well but it's not available here where I live. When it comes to the cheese, it's quite difficult to find a substitute for it, but low fat cream cheese works the best :) And you're welcome - I'm glad you like the recipe :)

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