Bienenstich (a.k.a. German Bee Sting Cake)

Bienenstich, or "bee sting cake" has a rich history. With origins in Germany, the cake is called "bee sting" as it is thought that a bee was attracted to the sweet topping on the cake, and that the baker who invented the cake was stung.


For the Filling:

2 cups milk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup whipping cream

For the Base:

4 eggs
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup milk
4 Tbsp butter

For the Almond Topping:

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds
4 Tbsp whipping cream


For the Filling:

Heat the milk with the sugar until almost boiling. Stir to dissolve sugar and be careful to keep the heat at medium to low so that you don't burn on the bottom.

Whisk the eggs together with the flour and cornstarch until smooth.

Temper the egg mixture by gradually adding about 1/2 a cup of the hot milk to the eggs, whisking constantly (otherwise you'll end up with scrambled eggs). Then gradually stir the egg mixture into the rest of the milk in a thin stream, whisking constantly.

Keep stirring until mixture starts to thicken but do not let it boil. When it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, remove from heat and add vanilla extract.

Pour into a bowl. Stir a few times. Place plastic wrap over the custard, so that it is touching the custard while it cools (this prevents a skin from forming).

When ready to assemble the cake, whip the whipping cream until very stiff, but stop whipping before it becomes clumpy and starts to turn into butter. Stir 1/3 of the whipped cream into the cold custard. Fold the rest into the custard. Do not over mix.

For the Base:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy; add vanilla.

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt; mix into the egg mixture.

Heat the milk and butter until very hot (not quite boiling). Add the hot milk/butter to the batter.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. Top with Almond Topping and allow to cool while preparing the filling.

For the Almond Topping:

In a medium saucepan, heat together the butter and sugar and the whipping cream until it just comes to a boil (should be a light caramel colour). Add the almonds. Spread onto the baked cake as even as you can (this is easiest while the cake is still warm and in the pan).

Putting it all together:

When the cake has cooled, remove cake from pan and slice in half crossways to make two layers. Place bottom layer cut side up on cake plate and spread with filling. Top with the second layer with the almond glazed side up. Refrigerate until time to serve.

This recipe is also linked to...

Food on Friday: Desserts
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Crazy Sweet Tuesday
Sweet Treats Thursday
Food on Friday: Cakes
Sweets for a Saturday


Janet said...

Who did you share it with C? Love your blog! You do make things look pretty.

Kim McCallie said...

This is another beautiful dessert. I've never had a Bee Sting Cake but I know that I would love it. Just the fact that it has filling is enough to reel me in. Thanks for sharing on Sweet Indulgences Sunday.

Anonymous said...

My German Mum made this cake as a birthday staple. She used a packet custard set quite firmly and beat butter into the cold custard to make a thick creme filling. She also multilayered the cake like a torte and the almonds were baked on, but this was always a little tricky as the topping liked to sink into the middle that way. It's nice to see a proper recipe for this as most bought 'beestings' are some sort of bready base with whipped cream

Carolynn said...

@Anonymous - I've never heard of butter being beaten into a set custard, but that would make for a very rich filling.

I have also had this as a multi-layered torte-style cake. Really rich and yummy that way too.

As for the almonds, baking them on top would be tricky - I asked my mom and some of her friends who also make Bienenstich and they all have never tried it that way.

Helgaelsa said...

I would like to make it ahead of time. can I freeze this cake for a month?

Carolynn said...

@ Helgaelsa

You can freeze the cake portion of the Bienenstich, but the filling and nutty topping would not freeze well.

Anonymous said...
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Greg said...

So where does the brown sugar go? It's not listed in the ingredients. And is there any honey? If so, how much and where? Greg

Carolynn said...

Greg, my apologies. It is regular granulated sugar, not brown sugar. And there is no honey in this version.

Recipes bienenstich said...

i it thank you for information. it this my favorit food..!!!