Old-fashioned marzipan cake

marzipan-cakeYears ago, I fell in love with this Marzipankuchen. In all its simplicity, it has always been among my favorite cakes. It was the secret treat my best friend and I loved to share on rainy afternoons when we were school girls, growing up in a small town in the South of Germany.

Back in the day, we used to spend many hours at the `boutique` owned by my friend´s mother, a little shop with the most beautiful, handpicked selection of children´s clothes. It´s easy to imagine what drew two nine year old girls there. Choosing random outfits and trying them on in the privacy of the back room, we secretly gave in to the unuttered thought it was all ours … to us, this wasn´t a shop, it was a spatious dressing room worthy of not one, but two princesses.

But there was another thing: the bakery on the other side of the street. Stealthily my girlfriend and I would snatch a few coins from her mum´s wallet to buy warm, oven fresh loaves of rustic bread and indulge on them with a jar of Nutella – or little marzipan cakes, moist, golden, with a subtle almond flavor and thickly coated with dark chocolate glaze. Slice after slice, we would do our best to make them disappear within the afternoon, or  perhaps reserve some to have a sweet snack during school the next day.

Over the years, I lost sight of the marzipan cake, until I digged out the recipe a few days ago. And when I took the cake out of the oven a little later, it almost felt like being nine again. Well, almost. But it´s still true that a good friend´s company and a nice slice of Kuchen will always brighten up a cloudy day.


Marzipan cake:

4 eggs
90 g fine sugar
1 small pinch fine salt
180 g unsalted butter, melted
150 g flour
75 g ground almonds
6 g baking powder
150 g marzipan, finely grated (the best quality you can find)
a few drops almond extract + 1 tbsp rum (optional)

Using a kitchen machine or electric whisks, whisk eggs with sugar and salt until frothy, 4-5 minutes at high speed.

Mix flour with almonds and baking powder. At low speed, gradually add to egg mixture .

In a thin stream, pour the melted butter  until fully incorporated.

Add grated marzipan, almond extract and rum (if using).

Transfer dough into a well buttered baking tin and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C /350 °F for about 40 minutes.

Leave to cool and unmould.

Once cooled, melt cholocalte in a bain-marie/double boiler and glaze cake.

Chocolate glaze:
150 g good quality dark chocolate
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2-3 tbsp cream

Break chocolate into chunks and melt over a bain-marie/double boiler. Add butter and cream. Leave to cool slightly, then pour onto the cake (cooled) in a “zigzag pattern”. Takes a few hours to harden.


    1. Hey Amanda! The colder it gets (the closer Christmas is!), the more marzipan enters the kitchen – that´s the German part of me. Enjoy the weekend, too!


  1. I love your description of 9-year old you and your friend in the clothes shop and then sneaking the cake slice by indulgent slice. Of course it leads me to want to make your recipe so I thank you in advance. I adore those tastes and I can imagine I am 9 again as I nibble it later!


    1. Thinking of those little girls made me want this cake so much there was no chance NOT making it ;-)! BUt it´s a delicious cake to have around anyway, so I´m happy to hear you´ll try it! Thanks so much for your nice words and always thoughtful comments! Have a lovely weekend, Sabine

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s always my pleasure to read your blog and pop your recipes in my ever growing folder of must makes. Its a small thing to make express truthful words in return 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. mais où trouves-tu cette si jolie vaisselle, sabine? je ne t’avais pas encore parlé de cela, absorbée que j’étais par les délices contenus dans ces magnifiques écrins!
    tes photos sont *magiques* car la vaisselle qui compose tes articles est plus que charmante: c’est une merveille!
    ps: tu as abandonné la traduction allemande de tes recettes?


    1. Oh, ces assiettes, je te comprends bien? Cette fois, elles sont toutes “importées” de l´Allemagne: celle où se trouve le gâteau entier était à ma grand-mère, la tasse et assiette au décor de roses , je les ai reçues de ma mère qui les avait héritées.
      Autrement, j´ADORE les brocantes!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. oui, oui, sabine je parlais de toutes les assiettes, tasses et même couverts (fourchettes, couteaux….) que l’on voit sur tes photos 😉
        maintenant je comprends combien cette vaisselle est importante (souvenir et héritage) et elle met admirablement bien en valeur tes recettes!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you, Mimi! I can´t have that cake without thinking of that story, so I thought I´d tell it to you, too 😉
      As of the marzipan: It´s a bar of about 200 grams – I had no idea it could be available canned!


  3. This looks like the perfect recipe for me: I’m planning to make some marzipan and want to use it in a layer cake. Would this recipe fill two 9 in round cake tins, or should I double the recipe to accommodate? Thanks and hope to hear back soon! – Dan


    1. Good morning Dan, personnally I haven´t used other moulds than my usual bundt tin (8 in upper diameter) for this cake. So I guess I´d double the quantities for your project, which sounds very tempting btw ! Hope this helps! I´d love to hear how it turned out….have a lovely day & week, Sabine


Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s