Erdbeersaison: Germany’s Favorite Summer Fruit Season…

I have only fond memories of growing up in Germany. And many of my summer memories involve the sweet smell of ripe strawberries. It is impossible to walk past a farmer’s market, or down a street, or even pass by a grocery parking lot or walk into a grocery store without smelling that incredible fragrance of bright, red strawberries. Germany lives for the berry fruit during the summer months and today I wanted to share one of my favorite strawberry recipes Erdbeerkuchen mit Vanillepudding or strawberry cake with vanilla pudding.

Erdbeersaison or strawberry season usually runs from late April to August, but peak season is around May until June. And during that time you are sure to spot the fruit not only on cakes and tartlets, but also in or on ice cream, in fruit salads, on yogurt or just plain eaten straight out of the palms of your hands.

I remember every year my Opa Kalle would grow strawberries at his garden home. And once it was time to pick them, I was always there, eager to help. Of course many of the strawberries didn’t make it into the basket, but straight into my mouth. Just making sure they would pass the taste test.

But even if people don’t have their own Erdbeerfeld or strawberry field, there is no shortage on places to buy them. Every year, on street corners and grocery parking lots Karl’s Erdbeer-Hof offers strawberry enthusiasts the opportunity to buy farm fresh strawberries from their pop-up huts. Brightly colored and designed to look like a strawberry, the stands are open Monday through Saturday and carry a variety of strawberries. Many of these huts are also serving customers inside malls, making it easy to get your strawberry fix.

Erdbeerkuchen mit Vanillepudding


For the cake base:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla sugar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

For the strawberry topping:

  • 1 package vanilla pudding mix (like jello)
  • 2 cups of milk (for the pudding mix)
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar (for the strawberries)
  • 500 grams of strawberries (washed, cleaned and cut into half)
  • 1 package Tortenguss, red
  • 2 tablespoons sugar for the Tortenguss


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Prepare vanilla pudding with milk and chill (I like to make mine the day before to ensure it is cold).
  • Wash, clean and sugar the strawberries with the two tablespoons of sugar.
  • For the cake base, in a mixing bowl and using an electric mixer combine the eggs with the 1/2 cup of sugar and the vanilla sugar until nice and fluffy.
  • Add the melted butter and mix again until combined.
  • Add the flour and baking powder and continue to mix for 3 minutes.
  • Coat a 9-inch round cake pan with removable bottom with cooking spray.
  • Line the pan with a circle of wax paper.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  • Bake the cake on the middle rack for 15 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes; removed from the pan, peel off the wax paper and let cool completely.
  • Top the cake with the pudding (it does not have to be a perfect, thin layer).
  • Avoiding the strawberry juice at the bottom of the bowl, pile the sugared strawberries on top of the pudding, creating a “strawberry pyramid.”
  • Using the strawberry juice from the bowl and adding additional water along with the two tablespoons of sugar, make the Tortenguss (it can be bought on Amazon).
  • While still hot, drizzle the Tortenguss over the strawberries beginning in the middle.
  • Place in the refrigerator for one hour to cool down before serving.

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