10/6/11

Heartbreak Cake

This is sure to be one of the saddest stories you'll ever read.  Yesterday I decided to get a head start on Baking on Friday since I'm walking with Sue that day, and then I have to see my best friend, the dentist  I set about making the most beautiful Bundt cake from the latest issue of Martha Stewart Living.  I'd link to the recipe, but I can't find it on the website.  Maybe it's too soon for them to publish it?  I can't
'splain it.

So I had the cake all baked.  It had been sitting for the requisite ten minutes cooling in the pan on a rack.  Then, I went to flip it out of the pan and onto the rack to cool before glazing it when disaster struck!  The pan slipped out of my hands and into the sink it went.


I could have cried.  But I didn't.  I scooped up what wasn't touching the sink and piled it on the counter top.


Woe is me.  Well.  It still tasted good.  I spent nearly two hours making it, however, and so I was not happy about this turn of events.  (Pun intended.)  I'll try it again, but another time.  Sigh.  I promise you it tastes good, and I'm passing the recipe along despite how terrible it turned out.  (Pun intended.)  This would be good for dessert or even as a coffee cake for breakfast or brunch.  In fact, that's what I intended for it.  I was going to eat it for breakfast.  This morning I'm on a hunger strike to protest my own clumsiness.  (That'll teach me.)

Apple-Walnut Bundt Cake
Servings: 10    Preparation Time :0:40
FOR THE CARAMELIZED APPLES:
1/3 cup  granulated sugar
1 tablespoon  water
3 tart green apples, such as Granny Smith -- cored, peeled, and cut into 1-inch chunks
 
FOR THE CAKE:
2 sticks  unsalted butter -- room temperature, plus more for pan
3 cups  all-purpose flour -- plus more for pan
2 1/2 teaspoons  baking powder
1/2 teaspoon  baking soda
3/4 teaspoon  ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon  freshly grated nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon  ground ginger
Coarse salt
1 3/4 cups  packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup  whole milk
3/4 cup  chopped toasted walnuts
 
FOR THE GLAZE:
1 1/2 cups  confectioner's sugar
3 tablespoons  apple cider

Make the caramelized apples:  Cook granulated sugar and water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, without stirring, until sugar caramelizes, about 4 minutes.  Reduce heat to low.  Stir in apples.  Cook, covered, until softened, about 6 minutes.  Slightly mash apples with a fork until broken down but still chunky.  Continue to cook, uncovered, stirring, until liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes.  Let cool completely.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Make the cake:  Butter a 10-inch Bundt pan.  Dust with flour, tapping out excess.  Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and 1 teaspoon salt into a medium bowl.

Beat butter and brown sugar with a mixer on high speed until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes.  Add eggs, one at a time.  Reduce speed to low, and add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with milk, beginning and ending with flour.  Mix in caramelized apples and the walnuts.

Transfer batter to pan.  Bake until cake is deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 minutes.  Let cake cool in pan set on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Turn out cake onto rack, and let cool completely.

Once cake is cool, make the glaze:  Whisk together confectioners' sugar and cider.  Drizzle over top of cake, letting it drip down the sides.

STORAGE:  Glazed cake can be stored at room temperature for up to three days.

My notes about the recipe:  I made two swipes at caramelizing the sugar for the apples.  It sounds scary when you read the directions.  I was expecting to cook a carbon mess onto my saucepan.  When the sugar started taking on the texture of rock candy, I aborted the whole process.  Too soon, as I would find out.  I did an internet search and found a video that was very helpful in giving me the gonads to venture forth on this.  I'm sharing it with you here so you can do it in one swipe.  This video is courtesy of folchc.



What I would say about this is that the recipe has you add a tablespoon of water to the sugar, whereas this video caramelizes the sugar dry.  Mine took a little longer I think because the water has to evaporate out of the sugar first.  It then turns a chalky white and looks quite solid  (in fact, it seems cooked to the pan) before it starts to turn brown and melt.  Keep your fairly heat low.  Don't stir it.  Be patient.  It will happen, I promise.

Also, I used the baking spray rather than buttering and flouring my pan.  Obviously, it came out of the pan with gusto!

Sorry I don't have a pretty picture to show you, but it tasted really good.  It was moist and delicious.  When I make it again, I'll post a picture to show you.

10 comments from clever and witty friends:

Laura said...

The recipe sounds wonderful.

Snoodles said...

Aww, it really does sound tasty, and the remnants had a glorious appley, caramel look to them! A slip of the fingers...been there, done that. Maybe crumble it over ice cream? Hmm, I'm gettin' hungry!

Alina said...

Sorry about what happened. If it were me, I would have cried and screamed at the same time.

LynCC said...

awww I would have cried/screamed, too. It sure does look good!

Aliene said...

Oh well, that happens to the best cook. We just take it and mix up something else and call it another name. But it is discouraging.

Darlene's Quilts and Stuff said...

The cake recipe looks delicious I wil try it sometime soon. TFS

Loretta said...

Oh Barbara, I know you were devastated! From your recipe, it seem to be a very good cake. Don't worry because this has happened to the best of us. I'm sure the next one will be a showstopper! Hugs!

Sand and Sunshine said...

How awful. Though I've surely gotten you beat the Thanksgiving Eve that my sister and I were in a spat and I accidently flipped her pumpkin pie out of the oven and onto the floor. It was an accident I swear - I couldn't a nearly cooked pie out of the oven again if I tried! Luckily a friend of hers was in the restaurant business and "found" one for us.

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

Darn! You can't serve a cake in that condition. Oh well, best to not waste it. Eat it yourself, instead! Oops! Enjoy!

quiltzyx said...

Oh how I hate it when that happens. The bundt cake that turns to the dark side.
You know how to caramelize the sugar now & at least got to taste it anyway.