This is my twist on the traditional German Bienenstich cake. I originally had this cake from a local bakery a few years ago and I would buy it to impress everyone on special occasions. I had to learn how to make it! So, after doing some ‘cake stalking’ at that particular bakery and trying to perfect what I thought may be the recipe (with a few of my own twists) I am finally very pleased to present my recipe! It has taken me three grueling weeks of trial and error, btw….. you’ll thank me later (smile).
This cake is called Bienenstich (which translates to bee sting), Bee Sting Cake, or less commonly Bee Hive Cake. Rumor has it that in the 15th century, a group of bakers threw beehives at men who were trying to attack their village and the men ran away. The bakers then created this honey cake and presented during the villages celebration in honor of their victory. I really love this story so even if it’s not true, let’s just pretend that it is! After all, bakers are pretty bad ass.
Speaking of bad ass, I must tell you that while working on this recipe (over and over again) I finally finished a podcast that I have been listening to for years. It is one of the best fictional (as opposed to non-fictional haha) zombie stories I have listened to. Trust me, I listen to a lot of zombie fiction so I would like to declare myself an expert. That’s right, I said it – I am a Zombie Expert (it’s on the internet now so that makes it official.) Oh yeah, back to the point. What is this amazing podcast? It’s called We’re Alive and I highly recommend that you download and then listen to it all. Do a marathon. You won’t regret it!
Cake: (recipe from Smitten Kitchen)
1 1/4 (or one 1/4 ounce package) of instant yeast (NOT active dry yeast)
3/4 cup whole milk, room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp table salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
4 TBSP unsalted butter, room temperature
Honey Almond Topping:
1/2 stick butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup honey
3/4 cup sliced almonds
Crème Mousseline Filling:
Click this link for recipe
Strawberry Balsamic Compote:
Click this link for recipe
To start, I would recommend first making the Crème Mousseline and the Strawberry Balsamic Compote and then placing them both into the refrigerator to cool.
Now, let’s make the cake!
Place all cake ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix until smooth (about 2-3 minutes on medium speed). Scrape down the sides of the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside on the counter top for 60 minutes. The dough will rise slightly.
After the 60 minutes has passed, stir the dough a couple of times to release air.
Grease and flour one round 9″ cake pan. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350°.
Pour into the cake pan and place plastic wrap over the top, being careful not to let the plastic touch the top of the dough. Let sit for 30 minutes on the counter top.
While the cake dough is sitting, we will bake the Honey Almond Topping.
Place the butter, honey and sugar into a small saucepan. Cook at medium heat, stirring constantly until all ingredients come together and it begins to boil. Once it begins to boil, remove from heat and stir in the almonds.
After the cake dough has rested 30 minutes, spoon the almond mixture carefully onto the top of the dough. It will blend together as it cooks.
Place cake into the oven and cook for 25 minutes.
Remove from oven and cool on a cooling rack. After 10 minutes, run a knife around the edge of the cake pan to release the sides. Turn upside down to release the cake and then place back onto the cooling rack, almond side up.
After the cake has completely cooled, run a bread knife through the middle, making a top and a bottom section. Try to make the cut as level as possible!
Spread a little more than half of the Crème Mousseline onto the bottom cake layer.
Create a concave with the crème and then fill the well with about 3/4 cup of the Strawberry Balsamic Compote. Place the remainder of the crème around the edges of the compote. Carefully pull the edges of the crème over the top of the compote to cover it.
Place the top of the cake onto the filling and dust the top with confectioners sugar (optional).
Note: You can pre-cut the top into slices and then place on top one by one. This helps prevent the crème from oozing out the sides when cutting the cake for serving.
Keep refrigerated until served.