Butter Cake

Revel in this rich, gooey butter cake

2012-07-16T11:37:00Z 2012-07-18T12:30:42Z Revel in this rich, gooey butter cakeELLEN FOLKMAN - Tampa Bay Times Daily Herald
July 16, 2012 11:37 am  • 

Maryann Sieminski of Oldsmar, Fla., "grew up in Philadelphia and (has) fond memories of Bauer's bakery and their German butter cake. Can anyone share a German butter cake recipe?"

Cindy Shea of Spring Hill, Fla., shares a recipe she found at Food.com. I happen to be very familiar with Philadelphia butter cake because the Holmesburg Bakery in Philadelphia has been in my husband's family for more than 100 years. When I asked his aunt about Bauer's bakery, she said there was a fire there a few years back and they are no longer in business.

Hopefully, Shea's version will bring back memories for Sieminski. This cake has a deliciously buttery sweetness. I chose to use butter rather than shortening and baked it in a 9- by 13-inch pan because that's the only way I've ever seen this cake. If you have a stand mixer with a dough hook, I highly recommend that method to beating by hand. The dough hook makes such a nice, smooth dough. It is not sticky at all. I did not add the vanilla in the topping and I'm not sure it really needs it.


  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter-flavor shortening or 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 (1/4-ounce) packet active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm milk (100 to 110 degrees)
  • 2-1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract


  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 2 cups superfine sugar
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract, optional

Cream sugar, butter and salt in a bowl. Add egg and beat together for 1 minute.

Dissolve yeast in warm milk.

To egg/sugar mixture add flour, then yeast mixture and vanilla, beating about 3 minutes, with dough hook or by hand. Turn dough onto lightly floured board and knead 1 minute. Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover with a clean towel and let stand in a warm place to rise 1 hour or until doubled.

To make topping, cream butter in a mixer. In a separate bowl, combine flour and sugar and gradually beat into butter. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. Gradually add just enough milk to bring mixture to a spreading consistency, being careful not to make it too runny. Set aside until dough is doubled and ready for use.

When dough is doubled, punch it down and divide in two sections. Roll or pat halves into bottom of two well-greased 8-inch-square pans or a 9- by 13-inch pan. Crimp edges halfway up sides to hold topping. Prick dough with a fork to reduce bubbling. Spread topping evenly over dough. Let stand 20 minutes. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Bake 30 minutes for 9- by 13-inch or 20 minutes in the smaller pan or until top is just golden and crusty, but still gooey. Do not overbake.

-- Cindy Shea of Spring Hill, Fla., via food.com

(Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service www.scrippsnews.com)

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