Gooey butter cake - Goodness !
Why haven't I heard about this before? Why is St Louis the only place that sells this? It looks and sounds wonderful. There seems to be a plain, lemon and chocolate version.Is that right?
History of gooey butter cake
A recipe and a little more about the cake
A chocolate verstion
A pumpkin verion that looks mighty tasty
Chocolate peanut butter
Wikipedia on gooey butter cake with addtional links
As a St. Louisan, let me step in an be all authoritative(!). I've only ever had plain gooey butter cake (had no idea it came in chocolate, lemon, etc.). I'll say that some of the yumminess (if you like it) comes from the butter, and I think adding other flavors would interfere with that. I've actually never made one. I have the feeling I could never eat it if I even knew how much butter was in a recipe.
The recipe linked through wikipedia from the MO Humanities council seems weird to me in that I've never had the impression there was yeast in it.
Anyway, if you make it, I'll be curious to hear what you think. (Oh, and I prefer no almond extract in mine, but I think that's just personal preference. There is a certain similarity between the 'gooey' topping and marzipan, so I can certainly see adding it.)
st. louis has some funny food traditions. I'd never heard of this before I went there for a summer, but anywhere there's three or more people, there's a gooey butter cake. Imo's pizza is really interesting, and everything in the hill is so original. Oh, now I'm really missing that town.
That's exactly what happened in my family. We always bought ours at little german bakeries in South STL or south county and then, once, my mother decided to make it from scratch. Once she had a grasp of what the ingredients were, we didn't get to eat it again for a long, long time.
A little sliver would go nicely with tea or coffee. The problem is that it's pretty much impossible to eat just a sliver. I have memories of my brother laying on the couch at our grandparents' house with the box on his stomach, eating a whole cake in one sitting and shortly thereafter lapsing into an attack of lactose-intolerance.
And I agree--no special flavors--I've never heard of this. Just a little powdered sugar sprinkled on top. And once a year sounds just about right. This summer when I was visiting STL, every single household that we went to had one on the counter.
I was introduced to this cake when I lived in Columbia, MO. A friend who grew up in St. Louis told me about it and brought one to a potluck; I think she bought it but I don't remember from where. It was the plain butter flavor. I was skeptical but it was tasty in a good-to-eat-once-a-year way. I think you have to grow up w/ it to really love it, as I'd much prefer lighter, more delicate cakes.
This seems to be a favorite of Paula Deen of the Food Network. I have her "best of" cookbook that features all the gooey cake variations recipes that she sells at her restaurant. I'll post them if you want.
I grew up eating German Butter Cake (we just called it Butter Cake), something that was common in bakeries in Philadelphia. It is seriously rich, but irresistably yummy.
Here is a blog entry that has some pics and a recipe. Looks similar to the gooey cake:
Are they the same thing?