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  • Writer's pictureKristina Kasting

Traditional Lithuanian honey cake - MEDUTIS (veganized!)

Updated: Feb 23

Honey cake, known as "Medutis," is a beloved traditional Lithuanian dessert with a rich history and unique characteristics.

Layered honey cake - MEDUTIS
Layered honey cake - MEDUTIS

Ancient Origins

Honey cake has been a part of Lithuanian culinary heritage for centuries. Its origins can be traced back to medieval times, making it a dessert with deep historical roots.

As the name suggests, honey is the star ingredient in this cake. The use of honey not only gives the cake its distinctive flavor but also acts as a natural sweetener.

Spices and Layers

Honey cake typically features several layers of thin, mixed with honey cake sheets, separated by a luscious fluffy filling. The filling is often made with sweetened whipping cream, sour cream, and sometimes apple sauce with lemon juice. Spices like cinnamon and cloves are added to enhance the flavor if desired.

Aged to Perfection

One unique aspect of Lithuanian honey cake is that it actually improves with time! it is "proven", that resting overnight in the fridge develops the balance of moist and texture to perfection. Many people believe that it tastes even better even after two days when the flavors have melded together.

Celebratory Treat

Honey cake is often associated with special occasions and celebrations in Lithuania, including weddings, birthdays, and holidays. It's a symbol of warmth, sweetness, and family togetherness.

Regional Variations

Like many traditional dishes, honey cake can have regional variations in Lithuania. Different families may have their own cherished recipes and techniques, making each honey cake slightly unique.

Lithuanian honey cake is more than just a dessert; it's a symbol of Lithuanian culture and hospitality. It's often shared with guests as a sign of welcome and respect.

With its delightful combination of honey, spices, and creamy layers, this cake remains a cherished dessert that represents the heart and soul of Lithuanian culinary traditions.



Ingredients

DOUGH
  • ½ cup vegan honey substitute or golden syrup

  • ¼ cup brown sugar

  • ½ cup vegan butter

  • ¼ oat or any other plant milk

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • Lemon zest of 1 lemon

FROSTING
  • 4 cups coconut whipping cream (full fat) OR 2 cups coconut cream + 2 cups unsweetened coconut yogurt if you wish less "fatty" frosting

  • ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar

  • Lemon juice from 1 lemon

  • Lemon zest of 1 lemon


Assembled honey cake
Assembled honey cake

Directions

Preparation of the dough

1. Combine honey, sugar and butter, heat on the stove on low steering constantly until the sugar has melted. Mix in lemon zest. Add sifted flour and baking powder. Mix, then kneed until the dough starts forming and becomes consistent. It will be quite soft and will need an overnight “rest” in the fridge. If you don’t have time, just divide it into 2-4 smaller pieces, wrap each in saran wrap and pop into the freezer for 1 hour!

2. Next morning roll the dough into VERY thin sheet and cut out the desired diameter circle.

(TIP: I choose the pot lid of the size that I want my cake to be and simply cut out with it by pressing into the dough sheet!). My lid is 8.5 inch diameter and makes 10-13 circles of dough (which means that many layers of the cake).


3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and bake each sheet until nicely browned. It usually takes about 5-7 minutes so - very QUICK!

Make sure you lay these baked sheets flat prior starting to assemble the cake, because they are soft while warm, but will harden fast when cooled.


Making the frosting

1. Beat coconut cream with sifted powdered sugar in Kitchen Aid (or similar) until it starts thickening. Mix in the lemon and add the zest. Set aside a cup of frosting for the top layer to “complete the look”.

2. Start assembling and layering the cake on the cake tray or stand which will fit in the fridge (for another night! Yeah… It takes a while to get it perfect  ). 1st layer is dough to start with, then the frosting, then dough and so on. Keep going until the last (top) layer is dough as well. With the last top layer assembling is done and the cake is placed to the fridge to sit overnight.

Next morning remove cake from the fridge, complete the top layer by spreading the frosting you had reserved and serve right away of later in the day/evening!

Beautifully layered!
Beautifully layered!


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1 Comment


tristan
Nov 03, 2023

Wow! I feel like I'm traveling the world of traditional cuisine when I browse your food blog.

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