German Babka


My informant shared a cooking tradition that involved her grandmother with me. My informant told me that her Grandma Win used to make a German cake called a “babka”. Although the cake is typically made on Easter Sunday, her Grandma Win used to make it four to five times a year. She described the Babka as an Eastern European cake with a spongy consistency consisting of almonds and icing. She also noted that many other cultures make this cake and that the Jewish version is more of a twisted streusel. My informant comically added, “When she would make this cake, the feelings I had were not excitement or happiness. I am allergic to almonds, and was more sensitive to this allergy as a child, so I would become extremely angry when my Grandma would forget about my allergy and try to force me to eat Babka. I do not enjoy Babka.”