close-up of lemon cake
Food - Drink
The Original Bundt Pans Weighed Over 15 Pounds
According to Food & Wine, over 70 million households own a Bundt pan, which is such a staple in American baking that it has a place in the Smithsonian Museum of American History. While many bakers know that Bundt cakes became trendy in the 1960s, ring-shaped desserts similar to Bundt cakes date back centuries.
The original Bundt cake progenitor — a tall, ring- or wreath-shaped cake called a "Gugelhupf" — was popular in medieval Europe, particularly in Germany and Austria, with some recipes dating back to 1581. The dessert, made with heavy, yeasted dough, used pans made of cast iron that weigh up to 15 pounds each.
When Jewish-German immigrants came to the U.S. in the 1930s, they could not bring their heavy Gugelhupf pans with them, to their dismay. However, a member of a Jewish women’s group named Mary Abrahamson did have her family’s cast iron pan, and asked the owner of cookware company Nordic Ware to recreate it.
Owner David Dalquist recreated the pan using much lighter aluminum, and the women's group began selling the pans and cakes for fundraising, while Dalquist began selling the newly-named Bundt pans in a local department store. Since then, the Bundt pan and the cakes baked in them have become a slice of American history.