All About Cake Baking

This December I have been baking my way through Christina Tosi’s All About Cake cookbook. I first discovered Christina Tosi’s cake magic on Netflix in the dessert season (Vol. 4) of The Chef’s Table. Then when I was in Washington, DC my buddy Carole went with me to try her new Milk Bar (see earlier post). Carole gifted me the cookbook for my birthday. I sat down immediately upon opening the package and saw about a dozen recipes I wanted to try. Starting with the pistachio bundt cake above. Yes it really is Shrek green. It’s also uses about $20 worth of pistachios!

Next was the apple cider donut crock pot pudding. It required a slight substitution of delicious cinnamon sugar donuts from Marie’s Do-Nuts (Sacramento, CA). They have to be “day-old” so buy extra as you there will be some attrition. I shared the finished donut pudding around and everyone found it comforting and delicious. My neighbors and friends are definitely the early beneficiaries of this baking program. I couldn’t possibly eat all of this cake myself.

IMG_6563Any family gathering also provided an opportunity to try another recipe. This is the cherry cola bundt cake that I took to the Pieper Christmas at Auntie J’s. My version came out darker because the cola extract I ordered on Amazon gave everything a dark cola tint. The molasses and half dozen eggs made it rich and dark and yummy.

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Jesus’ birthday cake is a Christmas Eve tradition. This one is a Lemon Poppyseed Bundt.

I nearly wore myself out with the 3 cake sprint over Christmas. I baked 2 cakes on the day before Christmas Eve. Then I made one more cake on Christmas morning to take to a family dinner. Having no elves to clean up or even a dishwasher, I found myself really tired of  bundt pan scrubbing.

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Pallet cleanser: my adorable grandson modeling his latest Gramma knit sweater.

I also had to run to the grocery store twice–once to buy more butter, and once to buy more eggs. These recipes require a lot of both. Other than a few more exotic ingredients such as lemon extract.  I now know how relatively simple it is to make an interesting and delicious cake, and I don’t know why I’d ever use a cake mix again.

My aunt gave me this sort of loaf shaped bundt cake pan that she doesn’t use. It was perfect for the Mint Julep bundt cake. I forgot to dress with mint leaves (still in my crisper drawer). My mom really enjoyed this cake for Jesus’ birthday.

My final cake was the raspberry bundt with grapefruit glaze. I also made homemade whip cream. This cake was a big hit also. The grapefruit glaze offers a little zing. Always the texture of the cakes is dense and delicious.

IMG_6589I’m taking a break now (until 2019) and having fruit for dessert for awhile! There are more recipes I want to try.  In the winter when the weather makes it challenging to get outdoors as much for adventure or travel, it can be fun to watch a baking challenge from Britain on television and then try our own hand at a new recipe.

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