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BABKA: Bread or Cake?

Paczki Pop   Apr 6, 2012, 06:39am  #1

This is often a topic disputed between my mother and me, especially around the Easter holiday. This year, we settle it through the popular decision of everyone here on the Internet. So what do you consider it: a bread or a cake?
Polonius3 Activity: 880 / 6,017
Joined: Apr 11, 2008 ♂
  Apr 6, 2012, 08:02am  #2

Language (translation) and gerography come into play. On the one hand babka is sometimes translated (mistranslated?) into English as egg bread. But Anglos overuse the word bread --- things such as what they call nut bread,date bread, etc. would be called keks (fruit cake) or ciasto orzechowe, and toast bread goes by the name of pieczywo tostowe. So much for language.

I have heard that in old SE Poland (now Ukrainian-occupied territory) at Easter ham was eaten with babka so it played the role of a bread without being called that. In general Poles don't feel the need to label babka as a bread or a cake -- it's just babka, pure and simple.
mafketis Activity: 13 / 1,589
Joined: Mar 31, 2008 ♂
  Apr 6, 2012, 09:29am  #3

I consider it a cake.

The closest in terms of texture and taste for me would be pound cake (southern US) version.

in old SE Poland (now Ukrainian-occupied territory)

Don't. Start.
Polonius3 Activity: 880 / 6,017
Joined: Apr 11, 2008 ♂
  Apr 6, 2012, 01:08pm  #4

The pound cake I'm familiar with is not yeast raised. That is what gives babka its specific flavour and texture. Of coruse there are variants such as sand babka/babka piaskowa (made with potato flour), but the 'real' babka is yeast raised.
mafketis Activity: 13 / 1,589
Joined: Mar 31, 2008 ♂
  Apr 6, 2012, 04:46pm  #5

I was mostly thinking of babka poznanska, which is maybe not one of the 'real' babkas and I was thinking of taste more than texture.
Perfect Babka   May 6, 2012, 08:33pm  #6

We don't mind if it's bread or cake, we would like the recipe, we tried to make our Babcia's recipe however it didn't rise. Should we be separating the egg yolks from the whites?
pam Activity: 22 / 1,052
Joined: Oct 11, 2011 ♀
Moderator   May 7, 2012, 01:39am  #7

I consider it a cake.

my lodger made this for easter and he called it a cake. didnt actually like it that much, but the taste is a bit reminiscent of bread.personally i thought it was a bit on the bland side
Kevvin Activity: - / 4
Joined: Apr 23, 2012 ♂
  May 7, 2012, 09:12am  #8

In my family Babka is always placed with cakes when we drink coffee
Romy   Nov 8, 2013, 11:48pm  #9

Hi I was looking for the answer to this question and finally had to look in a bread book and it had a recipe and the title cakes it bread but the description called it cake.
I figure it's just delicious so it didn't really matter.

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BABKA: Bread or Cake?

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