We had a visitor last week and it gave me to think what vegetarian guests may try and take back home from our local kitchens. For sure the most popular is a cake called Sękacz, but our guests enjoyed Soczewiaki very much.
Soczewiaki is an old Polish regional dish, popular on the Polish-Lithuanian border, a kind of roll with potato dough, stuffed with minced green lentils.
Another popular local sweet is Mrowisko /Anthill/ – regional cakes typical of Lithuanian cuisine, which is characteristic of Podlasie. They are like Angel wings dipped in honey and sprinkled with poppy seeds and raisins.
On the end our guest decide to take back home to Switzerland very nice lithuanian bread baked in Punsk
Sękacz (German Baumkuchen, Prügelkrapfen, fr. Gâteau à broche) is a pastry dough baking sponge-fat, roasted over an open fire on a rotating spit in the shape of a wooden shaft or elongated cone. Traditional Tatar cake, popular in areas of former eastern borderlands, in present-day Poland, Podlasie Regional specialty.
The finished cake is similar in shape to a cut down tree stump. As a result of watering the rotisserie with successive layers of the dough, when the cake is cut into sections sękacz appears as different layers. Overflow during the baking process forms coagulated icicles that in the final result, resemble knots.
Sękacz history in its present form dates back to probably the Middle Ages. Poles know the tree cake recipe and technology of its production from Yotvingians, a Baltic tribe residing in the Middle Ages,in areas north of this region. This kind of a big cake could be easily created in the open kitchen hearths of the time, and its sleek shape mimics the natural environment suited to the tastes of the time. Currently sękacz baking tradition is preserved in different locations in Germany (Central Germany, especially the Harz region), Switzerland, France, Romania, Hungary, Lithuania, Sweden, in eastern Poland and the Kashubian region. Baumkuchen has also become one of the favorite cakes in Japan, where it is also currently baked.The Origin sękacz there are various, usually conflicting, legend.
In Poland the tradition recognizes that the first tree pie baked in Berżniki near Sejny the Suwalki region on the occasion of visit of Queen Bona. According to other applications tree pies were brought to Lithuania from Germany by Radziwill, and then through the noble mansions went to the richer peasant huts.
To view the professional baking sękacz in Buda Ruska, a local village close by.