Baking Challenge – European Style: Week 10 – Spain

I can’t believe it’s already week 10 and I’m more than halfway through the challenge! Time really flies…

So this week I’ve decided to go with an easy one: Spain. What a beautiful and diverse country! It’s been ages since I’ve been to Spain the last time. On the mainland I’ve only ever visited Madrid and Barcelona – each for a couple of days. Not enough to get a real feel for neither culture nor food.

As far as food goes, Spain is best known for its tapas and churros. I found a great food and travel blog la tortuga viajera which gives you a good idea what Spanish cuisine is all about. However I still don’t have a clue what to bake. It looks like they are not so big on baked goods. Most things are fried.

Which means that there will be a big reveal on Thursday! Can’t wait to see what I’ll be making… 🙂


Baking Challenge – European Style: Week 9 – Turkey

Turkey is one of the top vacation destinations among Germans. But you don’t have to travel to Turkey to get a good idea of turkish food. Since we have a rich culture of Turkish immigrants here in Germany – some live here in the 2nd, 3rd or even 4th generation – a kebab sandwich is as much a fast food staple as a slice of pizza or a burger.

Although, I’m a vegetarian, there are a lot of options in the Turkish cuisine for me even apart from the sweet pastries. Therefore I’ve chosen a savoury option for this weeks’ challenge: sigara böregi

It’s rolled yufka dough traditionally filled with feta cheese. I think it will be a great dinner snack on a warm summer evening!

Baking Challenge – European Style: Swedish Toscakaka

Yummy! Is about all I have to say about this cake. It’s buttery, almondy deliciousness.

I’ve combined several recipes and changed it according to my taste. Here’s what I did:

Featured image dough:
140 gr. flour
1,5 tsp baking powder
135 gr. sugar
125 gr butter (melted or at least room temperature)
2 eggs
75 gr. yoghurt (natural, unsweetened)
vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2 tbsp milk

100 gr almonds
55 gr. butter
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp heavy cream
1 tbsp flour


  • Preheat oven to 175° Celsius (345° Fahrenheit).
  • Cream together butter and sugar.
  • Add eggs one by one and incorparate well.
  • Add vanilla extract.

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  • Mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
  • Add part of flour mix and yoghurt/milk. Always alternating between the two until everything is all well mixed together.
  • Grease and flour baking pan (preferably round).
  • Pour dough into baking pan and bake for about 25 minutes.
  • About 5 minutes before you take out the cake, start preparing the topping by putting all topping ingredients into a cooking pot.
  • Set the pot on the stove at medium-high temperature.
  • Start stirring as soon as the mixture starts to melt.
  • Cook until it bubbles up and slightly thickens.Takes about 5 minutes.

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  • Take cake out of the oven and evenly distribute the hot topping mix on the cake.

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  • Bake cake for another 15-20 minutes until the topping bubbles and starts to turn brown.

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I think I definetely need to go to Sweden now! If only have of the food over there is as good as this cake, I’m going to be in food heaven. 🙂

Baking Challenge – European Style: Week 3 – Croatia

So, the third week of the Baking Challenge – European style is here and I decided to become a little more “exotic”. The country for this week will be Croatia.

I have never been there nor anyway near. However, I’ve heard that it is a beautiful country with a lot to offer. Maybe someone reading this, can confirm it? If you’d like to get some more information on Croatia, there is a great blog called “Chasing the Donkey“. It has lots of interesting tipps about travel, culture and food and it’s fun to read!

When researching recipes, I’ve discovered that a lot of traditional baked goods there are close to things eaten in Turkey or Austria, for example. It’s interesting to see how cultures have mixed through the centuries.

Anyways, after a lot of research I’ve finally decided to go with something savoury this time. It’s a filo or puff pastry dough called gibanica. According to web sources it’s usually filled with cream cheese. Which sounds perfect to me! There’s also a sweet version. If I have time, I’ll try to do both, but I’ll start with the savoury snack first…

As usual, please feel free to join in!

Baking Challenge – European Style: Austrian Buchteln

A day late, but here they are! Tahdah… Austrian buchteln with cherry jam filling and vanilla sauce. And they are delicious!

Unfortunately the first batch I made, the dough didn’t rise – my guess is that the yeast was just too old – and therefore I had to start all over which threw my whole time management. Hence the delay… 🙂 Otherwise making them was pretty easy although a bit time consuming, because you have to let the dough rise twice.

I used the recipe from Baking with Sibella. She’s originating from Bosnia where Buchteln are also a well known kitchen staple. Sibella has some great recipes on her blog including another famous Austrian baked goody: Vienna Apple Strudel. So, hop on over there and check her site out.

Here is my baking process in pictures:

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Ingredients sans cherry jam and vanilla sauce.

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Dough before rising (forgot to take a picture after).

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Rolled out dough with a dollop of cherry jam.

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Dough balls placed in baking pan lined with parchement paper.

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Dough balls after they have risen and doubled in size. Luckily!

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Fresh out of the oven – and a little on the dark side…

I only made about half of Sibella’s recipe.
My list of ingredients
250 gr. flour (I had to add an additional 30-50 gr)
half pck of dry yeast
50 gr. sugar (or a little more if you like it sweeter)
1 pck of vanilla sugar (or tsp of vanilla extract)
125 ml warm milk
50 gr soft butter
1 egg (room temperatur)

Quick recipe (I adjusted it a little bit from Sibellas according to my experiences):
Mix together vanilla sugar, sugar, flour. Add a little of the warm milk to the yeast, mix and pour everything into a mould of the flour. Cover and wait for a couple of minutes. Then add rest of milk, butter and egg. Mix well and knead for several minutes. If the dough is sticky, add some more flour until it doesn’t stick to your fingers and/or sides of the bowl. Let rise in a warm place until double in size. Roll out dough 1/3 inch (0,8cm) and cut into squares or scoop out a small egg sized amount and press flat into the palm of your hand until your whole palm is covered. Fill it with a dollop of jam and cover it with all four sides. Press sides well together and roll back into a ball. Place in baking dish lined with parchment paper or well greased with butter. Melt some butter and rub dough balls with it. Let rise until double in size. Preheat oven to 180° Celsius (360° Fahrenheit) and bake for 25 minutes.

My Buchteln are filled with cherry jam and I served them with vanilla sauce.


Have you tried them yet? I would love to see how they turned out.