It is said that the Beinenstich is named after the baker who invented it, who, while baking the cake was sting by a bee attracted by the honey topping.
Beinenstich or Bee-sting cake is one of my favourites and a traditional German dessert, a nod to my heritage. It is sweet but has a lovely balance of flavour and is simple to bake. Only trouble is now… who’s going to eat it all?
Ingredients (serves 12):
500gm cream cheese, softened
250gm ricotta cheese
zest of 2 lemons
2 tbs lemon juice
125gm icing sugar, sifted
300gm plain flour, sifted
55gm caster sugar
2 tsp dried yeast
185ml milk, at room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
60gm softened butter, diced
½ tsp salt
Honey almond topping:
90gm butter, diced
75gm caster sugar
40ml thickened cream
150gm falked almonds
Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celcius. Grease and line the base of a 23cm (9 inch) spring-form cake tin.
For the filling, place ingredients in an electric mixer fitted with a flat paddle and mix until just combined. Refrigerate until needed.
For the cake, place all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix with a flat paddle attachment on medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape the batter in to the cake tin and spread out evenly with a spoon or spatula. Place the tin in a clean plastic bag and tie to enclose. Leave in a warm, draught-free place and allow to rise for 1-1.5 hours.
Meanwhile, make the topping. Place butter, honey, sugar and cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5-6 minutes until the mixture turns a slightly darker shade of yellow. Add almonds and stir through. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until the cake dough has finished rising.
Starting at the edges, gently spread small amounts of the topping evenly over the cake at a time. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in the tin for 15 minutes on a wire rack set over a baking tray to catch any caramel drips. Release the side of the cake tin and remove the baking paper. Leave until completely cool before slicing.
Use a long serrated knife to halve the cake horizontally. Place the top half on a flat plate. Spread the filling gently and evenly over the bottom half of the cake using a spatula and cover with the top layer of the cake.
Beinenstich are best eaten on the day they are baked.