Apricot Streuselkuchen


Hi Joe

This is for our Grandparents, the most generous people I know.

I keep a lot of the letters Oma and Grandad write me. Some of these letters make me cry, it’s actually happened quite a few times now. Haha it’s becoming a trend. They don’t make me cry in a bad way. I’m not sure why this happens, I think it’s what happens when you feel a particular kind of love in your heart. I have a couple different stacks of the letters, in different draws and different rooms spread between Oxford and Glasgow. Do you keep the letters they send you?

I asked Oma to send me her recipe for Streuslekuchen, the stuff she always had about 3 boxes of stashed in the freezer just in case there was ever a…Streuslekuch shortage…? Haha can you image! What would become of the world. I got a letter a few days later of the recipe handwritten, in true Oma style.

If your name isn’t Joe and you don’t know what Streuselkuchen is – it’s a German vanilla sponge cake topped with a cinnamon sugar crumble. Cake-like but falls somewhere in-between the biscuit and cake category. It’s not the most jazzy thing in the world but you’re world will be brighter with it. You’ll eat one slice and then eat lots more in quick succession. My lil addition of apricot jam, was because we had apricot jam in the fridge. Feel free to leave it out.


For the StreuselDepending on the size of your tin, you may end up with extra. Stick it in the freezer to use another day. Or um eat it?

  • 200g flour – I’ve made it with plain and self raising, there isn’t too much difference here
  • 125g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 125g butter – fridge cold and cubed

For the Kuchen.

  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 500g self raising flour
  • 200g butter – softened
  • 200g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 250ml milk
  • Apricot jam – a couple of tablespoons if you want to use
  • Icing sugar to serve – 2 ish tablespoons. This bit is v important. Oma never made Streuselkuchen without a thick powdering of icing sugar, it doesn’t taste the same without


Pre heat the oven to 190 / 170 fan. Grease and line a shallow 20 x 25 cm tin. A 20cm square tin will work just as well. This is a forgiving cake, so work with what you have.

Make the streusel. Put the flour, sugar, cinnamon and cubed (cold) butter in a bowl. Using your finger tips rub the butter into the flour mixture. You are looking for a rough texture, with smaller and lager bits of crumble. Put the bowl in the freezer or the fridge while you make the cake.

For the cake, measure out the flour, add the salt and set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla until lighter in colour and fluffed up around the sides of the bowl. I use electric beaters but a wooden spoon will do it.

Add one egg and beat until fully incorporated, then the second egg and a table spoon of the flour. Beat again until the mixture has fluffed up.

Tip half of the flour and salt into the butter and egg mixture. Beat to combine. Now pour in the milk and add the rest of the flour. Mix until there is no more dry flour.

Pour the batter into the cake tin and smooth out. Spread the apricot jam over the batter layer if you are using. Follow with a generous covering of the streusel, you shouldn’t see any cake beneath.

Bake for 30 – 35 mins, until a knife inserted into the cake comes out with no wet batter.

Once cooled, remove from the tin, cover with sifted icing sugar and cut into big chunks.

Joe, I reckon you’ll say somethin like ‘mmm cake. Can we put some chocolate ganache maybe in place of the apricot jam?’ Love Caitlin X



Hey Joe,

Happy New Year’s Eve! Here is a Christmas recipe for you! This Lebkuchen recipe is from Mum’s German Christmas Baking book, it’s what I used to make the gingerbread house. If you are not Joe, maybe you don’t know what Lebkuchen is? It’s a German Christmas biscuit. There are lots of different kinds, but the one in this recipe is the best. It’s a cross between a cake and a biscuit that is spiced and sweetened with honey. A bit like soft set gingerbread… but with no ginger. Mmm! You’ll never want to eat anything else at Christmas ever again.

This bit has nothing to do with Lebkuchen. We met Becky and Roly for a walk yesterday about a 30min drive away from home. In the car on the way back we were talking about how good it was to see them, and to see people around this time of year. I said ‘I like hearing about other people’s Christmases’, you ‘what, listen to other people’s Christmas and then say nothing about ours?’, me ‘yeah.’, you ‘classic’. Then we laughed. Me ‘it normalises it a bit’, you ‘mm, yeah it does’. That wasn’t us saying no one ever asks about our Christmas (lol, this would be pretty sad), or that Becky and Roly didn’t ask or want to know (they did!), but it was us acknowledging our quietness about the day, that normally we wouldn’t because we wouldn’t be together with the same friends. It was comforting to hear that our friends’ days had their own drama and comforting that this time I wasn’t the only one being quiet about the day because most of the time our Christmas is a little bit too painful, too predictably strange to talk about. The conversation we had in the car on the way back made me very calm and happy. The music was good and your lemon jelly bean car freshener smelt nice.

This dough needs time to rest over night in the fridge, it needs this time to develop its flavour. This will also help the biscuits keep their shape when baked in the oven because your dough will be a bit cold before hitting the oven. Sorry, I hate it when recipes say that, I know you want your Lebkuchen now, I do too.

This makes A LOT of Lebkuchen. haha. But it’s a really forgiving dough that keeps well once baked. You can also keep the dough in the fridge for up to 3 days before baking. So, if you don’t have the oven space to bake all 40 at once, spread out your baking over a couple days.


For about 40 pieces of Lebkuchen

  • 250g honey
  • 250g brown sugar
  • 150g butter
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 400 to 450g plain flour – start with 400g, if you think your dough is too soft to roll out add in the extra 50g
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon all spice – if you don’t have this (I didn’t) replace with ground ginger or any other spice listed above
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tablespoons rum or water


Melt the honey, sugar and butter in a saucepan over a medium heat, stirring regularly until the sugar has dissolved into the melted honey and butter. At this point there should be no grainy bits of sugar on the spoon used to stir the mixture.

Pour the melted mixture into a bowl and allow to cool slightly while you measure out the flour and ground almonds.

Add the ground almonds, sifted flour, spices and egg into the melted honey mix and work together with a spoon (or hands) to form a dough. The Dough will not form into a ball, but it will be stiff and quite hard to stir together.

In a cup mix the bicarbonate of soda and rum or water until dissolved. Add this to the dough, and beat mix together until the dough is shiny and and tacky (not really sticky). Don’t worry about the dough being stiff, it’s a mini workout for the ol’ biceps.

Cover the bowl of dough with cling film and leave overnight in the fridge.

The next day heat the oven to 180 and line a couple of baking trays with grease proof paper, or butter. Take the dough out of the fridge for about 15 mins. This will just make it easier to roll out.

Lightly flour your worksurface and rolling pin (or wine bottle) and roll out the dough to about 4mm thick. Cut out your lebkuchen shapes, re rolling the dough until it’s all gone. If your biscuit cutters stick then dip them in flour before cutting.

Bake for 10 mins or until the biscuits are puffed up and the edges look set. They should come out of the oven very soft, this is good! Don’t be tempted to bake them until they are firm, or your lebkuchen will be sad and dry.

Once cool, you can leave them as they are, cover them in lemon icing (mix icing sugar and lemon juice to a runny consistency) or dip them in melted chocolate. The Lebkuchen is your oyster!

Becky and Roly, this post is for you. Happy New Year’s Eve, Love Caitlin xxx