Baumkuchen: German's Tree Cake is Also Hugely Popular in Japan. Singapore Next?

Do you want to know what is the best cake in the world? While the answer may vary, surely Baumkuchen could be one of strong options. Baumkuchen is a German (and Japanese) version of the Indonesia’s layered cake (kue lapis).

In Germany, Baumkuchen means “tree cake” or “log cake”. The name came from the cake’s characteristic rings that appear when sliced. It resembles tree rings.

Baumkuchen first introduced to Japan by Karl Joseph Wilhelm Juchheim. He was interned at Okinawa during World War I. Juchheim and his wife started making and selling Baumkuchen at a German exhibition in Hiroshima in 1919.

Juchheim decided to stay in Japan after the war, and continue to make Baumkuchen in Yokohama and Kobe until the end of World War II.

Juchheim’s wife returned to Japan a few years later to open a chain of bakeries with a Japanese company under the Juchheim name. This is why Baumkuchen’s popularity grows rapidly in Japan until now. Hence, it’s a famous return present for Japanese wedding guests, evidently because of its ring shape.

Baumkuchen easily accepted in German and Japan based on only a simple recipe. However, it can only be made by patient and professional baker. This cake consists of many separately baked layers. Typically, Baumkuchen will have up to 15 to 20 layers, requiring some patience to construct.

In the traditional way, Baumkuchen is made on a spit with each new layer added when the previous layer is cooked by the heat surrounding the spit. A traditional Baumkuchen also use a wood fire as a heat source. Each layer has to be dry before another layer of batter is poured over the previous. It allows Baumkuchen to become quite large, approximately 3 to 4 feet tall.

Baumkuchen’s ingredients are commonly only flour, sugar, eggs, butter, vanilla and salt. It doesn’t even need baking powder from the traditional recipe. Yet, it has incredible taste and looks beautiful as well.

Luckily, we can find this cake in Singapore. The Juchheim brand has opened the branch in Takashimaya Food Hall. Don’t miss the chance to try this delicate cake that has been popular in Japan!

Juchheim Baumkuchen

Address : 391 Orchard Road Takashimaya Food Hall, Ngee Ann City. #B2-05-03, Singapore. Opens daily from 10am to 9.30pm

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