Ever heard of a chimney cake? This delectably sweet spiral pastry is our new obsession

When you think of flaming hot charcoal, the first thing that usually comes to mind is a shisanyama or braai. For Hungarians and Romanians it’s a sweetened pastry rotisserie affair, known as “kürtoskalács”.

by: Robyn Brittow | 06 Apr 2018
 
Chimney Cakes

(Image: iStock)

Traditionally baked by men, over hot coals, these cakes are served at special occasions and festivals like weddings, birthday celebrations and baptisms. 

Similar to what we know as a spit braai, this decadent pastry roll is prepared on a “spit” and rotated until cooked and births that beautifully golden colour. 

Once off the fire, the steaming hot, hollow chimney cake is instantaneously brushed with melted butter and rolled in classic donut toppings such as sugar and cinnamon, coconut shavings or crushed walnuts.  

It doesn't stop there! From filling these cakes with the hazelnut-chocolaty goodness that is Nutella, the chimney cake has even been replacing the much drier wafer, serving as an ice cream cone.

As we evolve, so has this sweet treat that dates back to the 1600s and has taken on many adaptions - not only sweet but savoury variations too. Think olives and rosemary topped with Maldon salt.

Yes, our mouths are watering too!

Today the chimney cake is a popular street food found at kürtoskalács (chimney cake) stalls on the streets of Romania and Hungary; however back in 2016 the Hungarians sent out an application to declare the treat a traditional Hungarian dessert but the debate on the chimney cake’s origin, between the two countries remain. #cakewars

Whether it was the Hungarians or Romanians that gifted us with this cake, the rest of the world seems to love this tasty pastry too, with bakeries all over the world dedicated solely to making them.

It’s evident that the chimney cake is a winner of a dessert. Places like Kraków in Poland and Sarasota, Florida have their respective bakeries serving the kürtoskalács – chimney cake.

Chimney Cake Bakery in Kraków in Poland.

Someone bring this deliciousness to South African soil please!

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Read more on: romania  |  chimney cakes  |  hungary  |  pastry  |  baking
 

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