Ukrainian Christmas Buckwheat Honey Cake




1 cup dark honey (buckwheat)
1-1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. powdered cardamom (optional)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
2-1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. baking soda
pinch of salt
1 lemon
1/2 cup milk
6 egg whites stiffly beaten with 2 tbsp. sugar
Fine dry bread crumbs
12 to 18 whole blanched almonds (optional)


Combine honey and spices and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool.

Cream butter with sugar until very pale and fluffy. Add egg yolks and beat until smooth and well blended. Stir in cooled honey and spices.

Sift flour with baking soda and salt. Add lemon rind. Resift flour into batter alternately with milk, beating, well between each addition.

Beat egg whites until frothy then add 2 Tablespoons sugar and keep beating until stiff. Gently Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites to the batter.

Grease the pans with butter, sprinkle with bread crumbs and tap out excess. If you use a loaf pan or a cake pan, arrange almonds on top of the cake.

This cake can be baked in a 9-inch fluted tube pan, a 9-inch loaf pan or 10-inch round cake pan.

Bake in pre-heated 375 degrees F. oven for 40 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 and bake 20 minutes more, or until a tester comes out clean. Cool until cake shrinks from sides of pan. Turn out and cool on a rack. When completely cool, wrap well and let mellow for 2 days before cutting. Makes 1 cake.

Author's Comments

Buckwheat honey gives this cake a strong honey flavour.

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