5 timeless classic cakes from around the world

NNicholas August 25, 2023 9:12 PM

Travel the world without leaving your kitchen! We are exploring some of the most delicious and timeless classic cakes from around the world. Each one with its own rich history and unique baking techniques.

1. Sachertorte - Austria

Originating from Vienna, the Sachertorte is a specific type of chocolate cake, or torte, invented by Franz Sacher in 1832. This luxurious dessert is made of two layers of dense chocolate sponge cake separated by a thin layer of sweet apricot jam, and coated in dark chocolate icing.


  • 6 eggs
  • 150g sugar
  • 130g flour
  • 150g dark chocolate
  • 150g butter
  • Apricot jam
  • Dark chocolate for icing

Baking Technique:

The traditional baking technique for Sachertorte involves separating the egg whites from the yolks and beating them until they're stiff. The chocolate is melted together with butter, then combined with egg yolks, sugar, and flour. The stiff egg whites are carefully folded in, creating a fluffy and airy batter.

2. Tres Leches Cake - Latin America

This moist and creamy cake, which translates to "three milks" cake, is a popular dessert in Latin America. It's a sponge cake soaked in three kinds of milk: evaporated milk, condensed milk, and heavy cream.


  • 5 eggs
  • 200g sugar
  • 200g flour
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 200ml heavy cream

Baking Technique:

The uniqueness of Tres Leches cake lies in its soaking process. After baking, the sponge cake is poked with a fork all over, and a mixture of the three milks is poured over it, letting the cake absorb all the milky goodness. It is often served with a whipped cream topping.

3. Pavlova - Australia/New Zealand

Named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, this meringue-based cake with a crispy exterior and soft, light inside is topped with whipped cream and fresh fruits. Both Australia and New Zealand claim it as their national dish.


  • 4 egg whites
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • 200ml whipped cream
  • Fresh fruits for topping

Baking Technique:

The key to a perfect Pavlova is in the meringue. Egg whites are beaten until they form stiff peaks, then caster sugar is gradually added, followed by vinegar and cornflour. The batter is then shaped into a cake and baked at low temperature, resulting in a crispy exterior and soft interior.

4. Baklava - Middle East

Baklava is a rich, sweet pastry made of layers of filo filled with chopped nuts and sweetened and held together with syrup or honey. It's a staple dessert in many countries in the Middle East and the Balkans.


  • Filo pastry sheets
  • 200g mixed nuts
  • 100g melted butter
  • 200g sugar
  • 200ml water
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Baking Technique:

The process of making Baklava involves layering thin sheets of filo pastry, melted butter, and a mixture of ground nuts and cinnamon. The pastry is baked until golden and crisp, then soaked in a simple syrup.

5. Black Forest Cake - Germany

Known in Germany as Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte, Black Forest Cake is a rich, luscious dessert that layers chocolate cake, cherries, and whipped cream. It's named after the specialty liquor of the Black Forest region, known as Schwarzwälder Kirsch(wasser), which gives the cake a distinctive cherry pit flavor.


  • 200g flour
  • 200g sugar
  • 100g cocoa powder
  • 6 eggs
  • 500ml whipped cream
  • 1 can cherries
  • 100ml Kirsch

Baking Technique:

The highlight of baking a Black Forest Cake is the assembly. After baking the chocolate sponge, it is sliced into layers. Each layer is soaked with Kirsch, then topped with whipped cream and cherries. Repeat this process until all layers are used. The cake is decorated with more whipped cream, cherries, and chocolate shavings.

Baking these classic cakes may seem intricate, but they are certainly worth the effort. Not only do they taste incredible, but they also serve as a delicious reminder of the rich history and culture of their countries.

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