Kalter Hund Recipe

Translated it means “cold dog” but this classic treat is sometimes referred to as “Kalte Schnauze” (cold snout), “Schwarzer Peter” (Black Peter) or “Kellerkuchen” (celler cake).  There’s no agreement on how the name originated but the name “Kalter Hund” or “Kalte Schnautze” may have derived because the confection, which was typically stored in a cold place like the celler or refrigerator, tended to get a layer of condensation on it when served in a warm room, reminding people of the dark, cold, wet nose of a dog.


250g Leibniz Butterkekse

250g Palmin

6 Tbsp Droste Baking Cocoa

2 packages Dr. Oetker Vanillin Zucker or Dr. Oetker Vanilla Sugar

6 Tbsp granulated sugar

6 Tbsp milk

2 medium Pasteurized eggs (beaten by hand until smooth)

1 Tbsp Instant Coffee granules

½ cup chopped almonds (optional)

Cocoa (optional)


Candy or meat thermometer

parchment paper (sufficient to line the bottom and all sides of the loaf pan)

loaf pan


First, line the loaf pan with parchment paper (tip: spray the interior of the pan with cooking spray first so the parchment sticks neatly to the loaf pan, but once the parchment is stuck to the bottom and sides of the loaf pan, don’t spray the inside of the parchment paper).  Place Palmin into a heat-proof bowl and place that bowl into another bowl with hot water or use a double boiler.  Allow the Palmin to melt, but don’t have the heat so high that it causes the Palmin to separate.  160°F would be perfect.  Stir in sugar, cocoa and milk until those ingredients are dissolved together.  Then slowly incorporate the beaten eggs, the instant coffee, and the vanilla sugar and stir until everything is incorporated and smooth.  If you desire the optional chopped almonds, you may add them at this stage.  Check the mixture and make sure it has reached a temperature of 160°F so that that any potential bacteria in the eggs are killed.  Allow the Chocolate mixture to cool until it is no longer liquid but is still very soft (like soft frosting).  If the chocolate is too liquid, the cookies will float to the top of the chocolate.  If the chocolate is too cool, it will begin to firm up before you have a chance to make the layers of cookies and chocolate.


Spoon enough of the chocolate to create a ¼” layer of chocolate at the bottom of the lined pan.  This bottom layer will end up being the top of the cake once the cake is unmolded. Cover the first chocolate layer with a layer of cookies. Keep the cookies about ¼” from the sides of the pan.  You can break the cookies if needed, but try and have a solid layer of cookies so there is a good separation between chocolate and cookie layers.  Alternate layers of cookies and chocolate until all the chocolate is gone. The last layer will likely be cookies, but any remaining chocolate can be placed onto the last layer of chocolate.  Set aside to cool overnight (in a cold room or refrigerator).


Unmold onto a pretty platter.  Remove any parchment paper.  Sprinkle with cocoa if desired.  Slice about ½” thick with a sharp knife, to reveal the alternating layers of cookies and chocolate.  If too hard to slice, allow the cake to warm at room temperature until slicing is easier or heat the knife in hot water. Serve with cold milk or hot coffee.  The cake may be wrapped tightly and kept in the freezer for special occasions.  This is a fun treat to make with the kids.