Apple Walnut Cake

Use a cast iron skillet for this one. I used coconut palm sugar which made it nice and brown. This is from Epicurious.

  • 1 cup raw walnuts or pecans
  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 small or 3 large baking apples (such as Pink Lady), peeled, halved, cored
  • ½ c (packed) light brown sugar, divided
  • 1 c flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ c granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ c Greek yogurt, room temperature
  • Lightly sweetened, softly whipped cream (for serving)
  1. Place a rack in middle of oven and preheat to 350°F. Spread out walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast, tossing once, until golden brown, 10–12 minutes. Let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a 10″ ovenproof skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium. Add 2 Tbsp. butter and swirl to coat; arrange apple halves cut sides down in a single layer in skillet. Cook apples, undisturbed, rotating skillet on burner as needed for even browning, until cut sides are golden brown, 5–10 minutes (the timing depends on the juiciness of the apples; juicier apples will take longer). Turn apples over and cook on rounded sides just until they start to release their juices and the tip of a knife slides through with slight resistance, about 5 minutes. Transfer apples to a plate, arrange cut sides up, and let cool.
  3. Add ¼ cup brown sugar and 1 Tbsp. water to skillet and set over medium heat. Stir with a wooden spoon or heatproof rubber spatula until sugar is dissolved, then cook, swirling skillet occasionally (do not stir at this point), until thick and bubbling in a thin layer, about 1 minute. Let caramel cool in skillet.
  4. Meanwhile, pulse toasted walnuts, flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, and 1½ tsp. cinnamon in a food processor until combined and nuts are finely ground. Transfer walnut mixture to a medium bowl.
  5. Combine granulated sugar, remaining ¼ cup brown sugar, and remaining 8 Tbsp. butter in food processor (no need to wash it) and process in long pulses until mixture is light and smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and process in long pulses, scraping down sides of processor once, until mixture is smooth. Add half of walnut mixture and pulse to combine, then add yogurt and pulse just until incorporated. Add remaining walnut mixture and pulse just to combine.
  6. Arrange apple halves cut sides down over cooled caramel in skillet, spacing evenly. Fold batter a few times with spatula, scraping sides to make sure everything is well mixed. Scrape batter over apples and work into spaces around apples. Smooth surface (it’s okay if there’s only a thin layer of batter in places; it will rise in the oven).
  7. Bake cake until it is browned across the entire surface and the center springs back when gently pressed, 30–40 minutes. Let cake cool in skillet 10 minutes, then run an offset spatula or a small knife around the sides of the pan to loosen. Set a wire rack upside down on skillet and flip over to release cake; carefully remove skillet. If any apples or cake stick to skillet, scrape them off and press back onto the top of the cake.
  8. Serve cake warm or room temperature. Slice into wedges and top with dollops of whipped cream and a dusting of cinnamon.
  9. Do Ahead: Cake can be baked 2 days ahead. Let cool completely. Store tightly wrapped at room temperature.

Chocolate Malted Cake

This is a quick and easy cake!

Cake:

1/2 c sugar

1/2 c malted milk powder

1 c flour

6 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 eggs

3/4 c milk

6 tbsp butter, softened

1 tsp vanilla

Glaze:

8 oz semisweet chocolate chips

2 tbsp butter

3/4 c heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9 inch baking pan.

Beat butter and sugar together until smooth. Add 1 egg at a time and beat until incorporated.

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine.

Mixx 1/2 the flour and milk in the bowl and beat until combined. Add remaining and beat until smooth.

Pour into pan and bake for 25 – 35 minutes. Let cool and flip out of the pan.

Make the glaze:

Heat the cream over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add butter and chips. Let stand 5 minutes and whisk until smooth.

Pour over cake.

Serves 10.

Texas Sheet Cake

So the kids don’t like nuts so only 1/2 nuts! This is a family fav my Moms BFF was from Texas and shared the recipe with my Mom.

Cake

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, plus more, room temperature, for pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Icing

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup finely chopped toasted pecans (4 ounces)
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch cake pan. Line with parchment, leaving a 2-inch overhang on long sides. In a large heatproof bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  • Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low. Whisk in cocoa, then 1 cup water. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, whisking occasionally. Pour over flour mixture and stir to combine. Stir in eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth top with an offset spatula. Bake until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 22 to 24 minutes.
  • Icing: In a small saucepan, bring butter, cocoa, and cream to a boil, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; whisk in vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. Let stand until warm before using.
  • Transfer cake in pan to a wire rack; let cool 15 minutes. Pour glaze over cake. (For a more elegant presentation, remove cake from pan using parchment and place on a serving platter before glazing.) Sprinkle with pecans and let cool before serving.

Earl Grey Tea Cake With Dark Chocolate and Orange Zest

This cake is from the NYT – it so light and magical – the orange zest, chocolate bits and early gray are a winning combination. I upped the cream cheese and cut the cake in half because I like frosting in the middle of my cake.

FOR THE FROSTING:

  • ¾ c heavy cream
  • 2 tsp loose Earl Grey tea
  • ¼ c confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 c cream cheese

FOR THE CAKE:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 1 ½ c all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp loose Earl Grey tea
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 c sugar
  • 2 tsp freshly grated orange zest
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ c whole milk, at room temperature
  • ¼ c chopped dark chocolate

PREPARATION

  1. Prepare the frosting: In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 c heavy cream to a simmer over medium-high heat. Stir in the tea, remove from the heat, cover and let stand for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour. Strain the tea through a fine-mesh sieve, discarding the solids, and chill the remaining cream until completely cold, at least 1 hour.
  2. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch round cake pan and line with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, tea, baking powder and salt.
  3. In large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the orange zest and beat to combine. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until combined, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in the flour mixture on low, until just combined, then beat in the milk. (Don’t overmix.) Add the chocolate and fold it in using a spatula. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake just until a toothpick comes out with moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool for about 15 minutes. Then tip the cake out onto the rack to cool completely. Slice in half, flipping one half onto a plate.
  4. To finish the frosting, add cream cheese with confectioners sugar and best until light and airy. On low speed add the cream and beat slowly increasing the speed until smooth.
  5. Spread 1/3 the frosting on the first layer. Flip the second layer on top. Top the cake with the remaining frosting to serve.
  6. Store leftovers covered in the fridge for up to 3 days; let come to room temperature before serving.

Carrot Cake

This one is adapted from Skinny Taste. It is so moist and dense! I doubled the frosting and sliced the cake in half to make it 2 layer cake. I baked it in a springform pan to make it easier to release.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1/4 c flaked coconut
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 c grated carrots, peeled
  • 20 oz can crushed pineapple in juice, drained
  • 1/4 c chopped walnuts

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 2 – 8 oz Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 c powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, coconut, baking soda, salt, and spices; stir well with a whisk.
  • In a medium bowl, combine oil, eggs, and vanilla; stir well.
  • Add grated carrots and pineapple; mix well.
  • Fold wet ingredients with the dry ingredients, batter will be stiff and dry but keep folding it and it will all come together. Fold in 1/4 cup chopped nuts.
  • Spoon batter into an 8″ x 3″ cake pancoated with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 350° for about 40-50 minutes, depending on pan size or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and cake is pulling away from sides of pan. Cool cake completely on a wire rack.
  • To prepare frosting, beat together cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth. Spread frosting over top of cake.
  • Run a knife along the edge of the cake and release the pan. Use a serrated knife to cut the cake in half. Carefully flip the top half onto a plate. Spread about 1/2 the cream cheese frosting onto the layer. Then flip the second layer on top and spread with frosting.
  • Serves 6 – 8.

Lemon Sheetcake

This cake come from the NYT! It’s supper moist and easy! Next time I would use 2 c butter for the butter cream.

  • 1 c unsalted softened, plus more for preparing the pan
  • 3 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 ⅓ c whole milk
  • ¼ c fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 c sugar
  • 4 tsp packed finely grated lemon zest
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM:

  • ¾ c unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
  • 1 1/4 confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • Pinch salt
  • 4 to 5 tbsp fresh lemon juice

PREPARATION

  1. Make the cake: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, butter and flour the paper.
  2. In a measuring cup with a spout, combine the milk and lemon juice. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing for about 30 seconds after each. Scrape down bottom and sides of the mixer to ensure the mixture is well combined.
  4. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk mixture to the bowl in three additions. Mix until just combined, then use a rubber spatula to finish mixing the batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top and tap the pan on the counter a few times to release any large air pockets. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until puffed and golden and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake completely on a rack before frosting.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the frosting: Combine the butter, confectioners’ sugar, lemon zest and a pinch of salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low until combined, then turn the mixer up to medium-high and stream in 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. Whip the frosting until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, adding additional lemon juice as necessary until frosting is smooth and spreadable.
  6. Spread the frosting over the cooled cake and serve. Store leftover cake at room temperature, covered for up to 2 days.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Fresh pineapple makes all the difference! It takes a couple bowls, is fairly easy and quick clean up! Let them eat cake!

Topping

1/2 c unsalted butter

1/2 c coconut palm or brown sugar

20 oz pineapple chunks

For Cake

1 c flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

3 eggs, separated

3/4 c coconut palm sugar

1/2 tsp lemon sxtract

6 tbsp milk

1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 and spray an 8” pan.

In a small sauce pan over medium low heat melt butter until foaming. Whisk in sugar and cook 2 minutes whisking. Pour into pan and arrange pineapple on top.

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

Place egg white in a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until they hold stiff peaks. Scrape into a bowl.

Add egg yolks and sugar into that bowl and beat until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Mix in lemon, vanilla and 1/2 the milk. Add flour and beat, pour in the rest of the milk and beat until smooth. Fold in the egg whites.

Pour over the pineapple and bake for 40 – 45 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

Let cool 5 minutes. Then flip onto a plate, placing a bits that stick onto the top of the cake. Let cool and enjoy!

Serves 8.

Thin Mint Cake

This recipe is adapted from Eating Well. I made a couple tweaks. It’s an impressive cake to serve to guest.

  • Cake
  • 1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
  • ¾ c sugar
  • ¼ c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 c warm water
  • ⅓ c grapeseed or canola oil
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Filling

  • ½ c (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 c confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • ¼ tsp mint extract
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1-2 drops green food coloring (optional)
  • 2 tbsp half-and-half or coconut milk

Glaze

  • ½ c half-and-half or coconut milk
  • 1 ¼ c semisweet chocolate chips
  • Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Line the bottom with parchment paper and coat the paper with cooking spray.

Whisk flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt in a large bowl. Whisk water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla in a small bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Tap it lightly on the counter to remove any air bubbles.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a couple of crumbs attached, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto the rack. Remove the parchment and let cool completely, about 45 minutes.

To prepare filling: Beat butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on medium speed for 1 minute. Add confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, until completely incorporated. Add mint extract and vanilla, then 1/4 tsp salt and food coloring, if using. Add 2 tablespoons half-and-half (or coconut milk), and beat, scraping down the sides as necessary, until fluffy and light.

To prepare glaze: Microwave half-and-half (or coconut milk) in a microwave-safe bowl on High until hot, about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips until melted. Add salt and whisk until glossy. Let cool for 5 minutes.

To assemble cake: Using a serrated knife, cut the cooled cake in half horizontally. Place the bottom layer, cut-side up, on a serving plate. Spread with the filling and top with the other layer, cut-side down. Spread the glaze over the cake.

Strawberry & Raspberry Cake

This recipe is from Food and Wine – I add more fruit and might add more next time. This cake is so easy to whip up, tastes amazing and looks impressive!

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (4 ounces), softened, plus more for greasing pan
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (about 4 1/4 ounces), plus more for dusting pan
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries (about 4 ounces)
  • 6 small fresh strawberries (about 4 ounces), stemmed and quartered
  • Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 8” springform pan with butter, and dust with flour. Set aside. Combine sugar, butter, and salt in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla and lemon zest. Add flour; beat on low speed until smooth, about 30 seconds. Pour batter into prepared pan; spread to evenly cover bottom. Arrange raspberries and strawberries on top of batter.Step 2

Bake in preheated oven until a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 34 to 38 minutes. Let cake cool in pan 10 minutes. Run a small offset spatula around edge of pan to loosen cake; remove from pan. Let cool completely on a wire rack, about 1 hour.

Maple Cake

I baked this for Thanksgiving – it has a nice crunchy outside and soft inside. 

Ingredients:
1 c unsalted butter, soft
1/2 c dark brown sugar
2 c flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c maple syrup
1 c sour cream
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

Maple Whipped Cream:
1/2 c cold heavy whipping cream
3 TBSP maple syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch bundt pan.

Beat the butter and brown sugar on high speed until light and creamy, about 3-4 minutes, scraping the bowl down as needed.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In another bowl whisk together the maple syrup, sour cream, eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture to the stand mixer bowl in 3 additions, alternating with the maple syrup mixture and ending with the flour mixture. Mix only until just combined.
Scoop the batter into the prepared bundt pan and spread it out evenly.

Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs, 35-40 minutes.

Let cool 15 minutes in the pan before turning it out onto a wire rack to cool.

Beat the whipping cream to soft peaks. Add 2 tablespoons of the maple syrup and again whip to soft peaks. Taste and add remaining tablespoon of syrup if desired.

Top cooled bundt cake with whipped cream and drizzle with additional maple syrup right before serving.

Serves 10 – 12.