Dresden: Frauenkirche

When Dresden was bombed near the end of WWII the oldest part of the city, the Innere Altstadt, was most affected.  Two days after the bombing began, Frauenkirche  “Church of our Lady” collapsed. From 1945 – 1993 the center of Dresden was a pile of stone and ash. (Image of the ruins)

Socialist War Memorial

It was a political decision to not rebuild the church (religious structures were not the responsibility of the state). Residents appealed that the rubble should not be discarded as planned, and Frauenkirche was left alone as a reminder of the atrocities of war.

Reconstruction

In 1993, reconstruction of Frauenkirche began– mainly from ambitious fundraising and the intent of Dresden’s residents to restore the structure.  It was finished in 2005.   Pieces of the rubble were removed piece-by-piece and catalogued. Of the millions of fragments of original stones, close to 3800 were incorporated into the rebuild.  The stones from the original structure are darkest, due to the high iron content in Saxon sandstone. The church is a replica of the original.  In other words, it is nearly new.

Pieces of the alter were salvaged.  The interior is painted to resemble the marble and granite pillars. Frauenkirche’s intricate wooden doors were remastered from wedding photos taken long ago. Some aspects, such as the organ, were not restored. The renewed structure is said to symbolize the possibility of rebirth.

frauenkirche4

 

Our visit 

We stopped at Frauenkirche our first day in Dresden.  Derek climbed the tower to look over the city and I visited the interior.    Afterwards a friend recommended that we stop at the café near the cathedral for Eierschecke, a Saxon specialty.  It is an egg-custard cake, sort of like cheesecake, but not overly sweet!  I was wondering how it was made and found a recipe in U.S. measurements, here  —

 

Eierschecke

For the Dough:
2 cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 cup + 1/8 cup Sugar
1 Egg
Pinch of Salt
1/2 package Active Dry Yeast
1/2 cup Milk, lukewarm

For the Quark Filling:
17 ounces (500g) Quark
3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted Butter
1/2 cup Sugar
2 Eggs
Zest from 1 Lemon

For the Topping:
2 cups Milk
3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted Butter
1/2 cup All Purpose Flour
3 Eggs Yolks
3 Eggs Whites
1/2 cup Sugar
1 Vanilla Bean

 

In a small bowl, combine the yeast and half of the milk. Mix in 2 tablespoons of the flour and 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Allow this mixture to sit in a warm place for 1 hour.

Combine remaining dough ingredients then add in the yeast mixture. Mix until a smooth dough forms, then knead by hand. Allow dough to sit in a warm place until double in volume.

Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).

Grease a baking sheet or a Spring-Form pan. Roll out dough to fit the size of the baking sheet. Transfer dough to pan.

Mix Quark with sugar, eggs, and lemon zest. Mix until creamy.

Spread quark mixture evenly over dough.

For the topping, combine milk, butter, egg yolks, and sugar. Scrape out the seeds from the vanilla bean and add seeds to milk mixture. Bring to a simmer, stirring continuously. Allow to cool.

Beat egg whites until soft peaks form.

When the milk mixture has cooled to room temperature, gradually (and gently) fold into the egg whites. Spread this mixture evenly over the cake.

Bake cake for around 40 minutes or until a golden brown crust develops on the top of the cake.

Remove cake from oven and allow to cool completely.

 

frauenkirche3

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2 comments

    1. Tasse Kaffee! A cup of coffee! 🙂 Needed it for a fun late night in the Dresden party neighborhood. Still working on that post….

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