Hungarian Sour Cherry Cake
Sweet and tangy, this Hungarian cake pairs perfectly with coffee. Frozen and thawed cherries can be used whenever fresh sour cherries are not in season. Todd Coleman

Sour cherries grow abundantly in Hungary and are a staple in the country’s markets in summer. This cake is typically served with coffee for breakfast.

Yield: serves 12


  • 2 lb. pitted fresh sour cherries or frozen and thawed sour cherries
  • 14 cup flour, plus more for pan
  • 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pan
  • 1 12 cups sugar
  • 3 tbsp. kirsch or brandy
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 14 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 34 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup milk


  1. Heat oven to 400°. Toss cherries with 1⁄4 cup flour in a bowl; set aside.
  2. Grease a 13″ x 18″ x 1″ baking sheet with butter and dust with flour; set aside. In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar, kirsch, and vanilla with a hand mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add egg; beat until incorporated.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together whole wheat flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer running on low speed, alternately add flour mixture and milk in 3 batches to make a batter. Spoon batter onto reserved baking sheet and smooth evenly. Sprinkle cherries over the top. Bake until cake is golden brown, 45-50 minutes. Let cake cool 30 minutes, then cut into 12 squares.