Friday, 25 May 2012

Herman the Cake

My sister came to visit the other week and presented me with a jar which inside had some weird beige substance. I was then told it was the beginnings of a cake. Many people have heard of the German Friendship Cake but for me this was my first meeting with the man in the jar called 'Herman'. Yes the cake does have a name.

Even though this cake takes a little bit of work, it tastes lovely at the end of it. I took it into work and it  was all consumed very quickly. Don't worry if you get to step 9 and you don't have anyone else to give some of the mixture to, just keep following the steps you will just end up with enough mixture for two cakes. If you do this make sure you add lots of flavouring otherwise you'll still have that doughy taste left. I added about 8 teaspoons of cinnamon and I still think it could have done with some more. Also, because it is a very moist cake, after 40minutes in the oven, I turned it off but left the cakes inside. This allowed it to be cooked through properly without burning. When my mum baked this cake hers came out soggy in the middle so I think it's best left inside the oven to avoid this.

What's great about 'Herman' is that you can add any ingredients to him at the end to transform him into any cake you want. Apple and Cinnamon, Pear and Ginger, Choc and Nut-anything. I give the recipe 7.5/10. Have a go and see what you think...


Hello, my name is Herman.
I am a sourdough cake. I'm supposed to sit on your worktop for 10 days without a lid on.
You CANNOT put me in the fridge or I will die. If I stop bubbling, I am dead.
  1. You get Herman and put him in a large mixing bowl and cover loosely with a tea towel.
  2. Stir well
  3. Stir well
  4. Herman is hungry. Add 1 cup each of plain flour, sugar and milk. Stir well.
  5. Stir well
  6. Stir well
  7. Stir well
  8. Stir well
  9. Hungry again. Add the same as day 4 and stir well. Divide into 4 equal portions and give away to friends with a copy of these instructions. Keep the 4th one.
  10. Herman is very hungry. Stir well and add the following:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • half tsp (teaspoon) salt
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 2/3 (two thirds) cup of cooking oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 cooking apples cut into chunks
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 heaped tsp cinnamon
  • 2 heaped tsp baking powder
Mix everything together and put into a large greased baking tin. Sprinkle with a quarter of a cup of brown sugar and a quarter of a cup of melted butter. Bake for 45 minutes at 170-180C. When cold cut into finger pieces. Cake freezes well and is also delicious warm with cream or ice-cream.

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