Mollie & bPaulie's Wedding Cake

Mollie & bPaulie's Wedding Cake
Many Thanks to Rosie for decorating the buh jeepers out of that !!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Cake Origins: German Chocolate Cake

In 1829 my Great-Great-Great Grandma Riestenberg sent a recipe with her family to cross the sea, from Germany into the United States.
It was called "Deutsche Schokolade Kuchen", or in English, "German Chocolate Cake". The recipe has been handed down through every generation since, and I am lucky to have it myself. I was always a bit confused about why Coconut would be an ingredient in traditional "German" Chocolate Cake,since, well, you, know... Germany doesn't have native coconut trees. I decided I'd check it out, and stole the original recipe, written in German, from my mother's recipe box. It seems as though, that my Great-Great-Great Grandma didn't ever even know what a coconut was. Apparently, the only vegetable that is grown in Germany is Cabbage, since all of the other recipes were called Kraut this, and Kraut that.
It appears that they used kraut in everything. The original icing for German Chocolate Cake was really Sauer Kraut Pecan Icing. I then started doing more research, and found my Great- Great- Grandmother's recipe, which had some english words, but mostly german, and my Great- Grandmother's recipe, which was slopped up with old fried chicken grease. (she owned a restaurant called the Alpine Inn. They would slaughter the chickens right behind the restaurant, & fry 'em up as they were ordered.) The recipes were all the same except they quit using metric measurements by the time my Great Grandma wrote down the recipe, which was written totally in "american".
But then, I found my Grandmother's recipe, which called for coconut instead of sauer kraut. It was on a little recipe card, that said "With Love, from Fort Lauderdale". It dawned on me then, that my Grandma, who lived in Fort Lauderdale in the late 40's early 50's, had a plethora of coconuts, in the tropical climate, and switched up the recipe, because cabbage does not grow in sand. And like a good daughter, my mother made her recipe the same way her mother did.

There was a man who worked for the "Baker's Chocolate Co." named Sam German. He invented a Semi- Sweet Dark Chocolate, and in honor of his wonderful invention Baker's Chocolate deemed it German's Chocolate, which you can still buy at your local grocery store today.
The recipe for the cake & the icing were developed to make the product marketable, and it is probably the most popular dessert invented in the U.S., next to a Tollhouse Cookie.
Here's the original recipe for
German's Chocolate Cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting

pkg. Baker's German’s sweet chocolate (4 oz.)
1/2 cup Water, boiling
1 cup Butter or margarine

2 cup Sugar
4 Eggs, separated
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
2 cups Flour, all-purpose
1 teaspoon Baking soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Buttermilk
Coconut-pecan frosting

Approx. Cook Time: 30min

1. Melt chocolate in water and cool.

2. Cream butter and

3. Beat in egg yolks.

4. Stir in vanilla and

5. Mix flour, soda and salt. beat in flour
mixture, alternately with buttermilk.

6. Beat egg whites
until stiff peaks form; fold into batter. Pour batter
into three 9-inch layer pans, lined on bottoms with
waxed paper.

7. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or
until cake springs back when lightly pressed in
center Cool 15 minutes; remove and cool on rack.


4 egg yolks
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
1-1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter or margarine
1 pkg. (7 oz.) BAKER'S ANGEL FLAKE Coconut (about 2-2/3 cups)
1-1/2 cups PLANTERS Chopped Pecans

BEAT egg yolks, milk and vanilla in large saucepan with wire whisk until well blended. Add sugar and butter; cook on medium heat 12 min. or until thickened and golden brown, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

ADD coconut and pecans; mix well. Cool to room temperature and of desired spreading consistency.

1 comment:

  1. The recipe on the German's Chocolate box- sold under the Baker's Chocolate brand, has the recipe included, and is probably a little easier to follow.