The pink cake. Enticing. So pink. Smooth frosting lovingly applied. So Pink. Cherry topped. So pink. It still graces the table of every family gathering of even the slightest significance. We would steal into the fridge and under the lid of the cake holder to snag a cherry off that pink cake.

Did I mention it was pink? Naturally, in anyone’s sane mind, a cake that was pink, Pepto Bismal pink no less, must taste delicious. Then you top it with cherries and suddenly it is delectable. Right?!!?


This was not your average pink cherry topped cake. It was punschtorte. Recipe passed down from great great grandma to great grandma to grandma to mom and never ever to me after that first fateful encounter. After that day it was henceforth known as crap cake. Very eloquent I know. But, with your mouth salivating, you watch the knife glide through the first cut, the second, and scoop a piece up. The elation simmers a bit and you’re wondering why the inside looks so funny. Hmmmm… not at all pink but instead this strange creme color with some sort of concoction mixed with god knows what, thrown in the center. The outer appearance  keeps pulling you and you place that first bite hesitantly into your mouth. And BLECH…out it comes. After one chew of it you find yourself spitting it out on reflex.

The family is staunchly divided between punschtorte lovers and crap cake haters. It’s a big fat thick dividing line. Never does one dare to cross over. Whenever someone enters our family, the Crap Cake initiation takes place. Which side will they fall on? The lovers slice that cake and savor bite after bite. The haters enjoy a nice, normal chocolate cake, or better yet, a pink cake that tastes like a pink cake should.



6 thoughts on “punschtorte

  1. I’ve never tried this cake, but I think the chocolate one would be calling my name. My husband’s family has a similar divide over mincemeat pies. People either love or hate them. My husband and daughter beg for it. I stick with the pumpkin pie.

  2. I love the twist in the middle of your piece. There are so many things like this cake in many families. I have never had punschtorte but I bet I would be one of those people wishing that the pink cake tasted the way pink cake should taste.

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