On any day in September – Zwetschgekucha

German plum cake 1

If not now, when is the perfect time for a juice plum cake?!
So, although I’ve still got some travel impressions to share, they have to wait and make place for this traditional German autumn cake.

It’s a recipe for the high season of autumn fruits, when you have so much of them that you squeeze as much as you can onto a layer of simple yeast dough. Top it with streusel – here we go!

damson plum

Schwäbischer Zwetschgenkuchen

Still, a few notes are to be made:

  • This cake is made with damson plums, not regular plums (although around here damson plums are the common ones…)
  • This recipe is great with apples, too. You can’t decide between both? – Bake a tray of this cake, half damson, half apple.
  • Of course there are hundreds of version of this simple damson cake, especially around Southern Germany and Austria. Instead of streusel you can top the fruit as well with shaved or slivered almonds or with coarse sugar.
  • As Frau Zii emphasises for the Austrian “Zwetschkenfleck” (which is probably true for the Bavarian “Zwetschgendatschi” as well) this cake is served cut into squares.
  • It tastes best fresh from the oven and cooled out for a bit with a dollop of whipped cream that slowly melts on your cake … Heaven!

I used salted butter for the dough as well as for the streusel. Give it a try: The hint of salt adds a subtle nuance of flavour and enhances the sweet-sour taste.


damson plum cake 2

Swabian “Zwetschgekucha” (26×18 cm baking pan; 1 baking tray, if you double the amount)

dough: 250 g flour, 40 g sugar, 1 teaspoon active dry yeast, 40 g (salted) butter at room temperature, 1 egg, 80 ml lukewarm milk

700 g damsons

streusel: 50 g flour, 50 g grounded almonds, 30 g sugar, 40 g (salted) butter at room temperature, ½ teaspoon cinnamon

dough: In a medium bowl mix flour, sugar and dried yeast. Add remaining ingredients and knead into an even dough. Knead for about 5 minutes. Cover bowl and let rest at a warm place for about 1 hour until it has roughly duobled in size. Meanwhile wash, halfen (or quarter) and core damsons.

Prepare streusel: Combine dry ingredients. Add butter in flakes and work into streusel with a fork. Keep in the fridge.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Lay out baking pan or tray with baking paper and roll out dough in the size of it. Lay rolled out cake bottom into the pan and line with damson halfes. Traditionally this is done in a roof tile style. Sprinkle with streusel and bake for 30 minutes.
Let cool out, optional: dust with icing sugar, and eat still warm or fully cooled out with a dollop of whipped cream. It’s best at the day of baking.


  1. chestnutandsage

    Dieser Kuchen sieht so lecker aus! Ich hab den ja vorhin schon bei Instagram bewundern können und war ganz neidisch, weil ich eigentlich noch ein Stückchen Zwetschgenkuchen im Kühlschrank vermutet hatte, der dann natürlich vom Liebsten schon aufgegessen wurde. Was ein Drama! Und dazu dann noch Deine wunderbaren Bilder… da muss ich am Wochenende einfach nochmal ran und backen 😉
    Liebe Grüße!

    • Nicht mal ein Anstandsrest wurde übrig gelassen? Das ist aber gemein! Und dann verstärke ich die Qualen auch noch! Gott sei Dank ist die Zwetschgensaison noch nicht ganz zu Ende und der Kuchen lässt sich relativ schnell zubereiten.

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