Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I LOVE BIG BUNDTS! Chocolate Kahlua is the flavor of the day.

I never realized how much I would enjoy baking. Until recently I never really considered myself much of a baker, but a couple if months ago, I set out to improve my baking skills.

I have to tell you that I am now a very good baker and I enjoy trying new recipes and combinations of ingredients to bake these culinary delights. I decided that I would invest in a couple of new cookbooks, specifically those dedicated to BUNDT Cakes. As of this writing, I own 6 different shaped bundt pans, and four bundt cook books.

Bundts are easy. Bundt are beautiful. Bundts are as diverse as one's own imagination and your pantry.

Today I made a Chocolate Kahlua Bundt AND a Spring Velvet Swirl Bundt cake. The first was supposed to be a Chocolate Amaretto cake, but I didn't have Amaretto like I thought when I started. So, I substituted Kahlua for the Amaretto. It's just come out of the oven along with some cupcakes that I made because there was so much batter. They are cooling on the baking rack as I write this. Well, except for one which I ate still warm to make sure they were edible...wink, wink...

Here is the recipe for you to try:
1 devils food cake mix
1 pint of fat free ricotta cheese
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp extract (I used Raspberry but rum or vanilla flavors would work well)
1/4 cup Kahlua liquor
3 eggs
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup oil

In a mixing bowl, put dry cake mix, eggs, sugar, extract, water, oil and mix on medium low until ingredients are combined. Add in the ricotta cheese and Kahlua and blend on medium high until the batter is smooth, 3-4 minutes should do it. Scrape sides of bowl as needed to ensure a smooth batter.

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare your bundt cake pan with baking spray. Alternatively, you can butter and flour (or use powdered cocoa) to dust the pan to prevent sticking. I like the PAM baking spray. Brush the sides of the pan to ensure the the sides and center tube and crevices are all well and evenly coated. If using flour or cocoa powder invert over your sink and tap gently to dislodge any excess.

Pour the prepared batter into your bundt pan. Using a spatula, smooth the top of the cake batter to the edges/sides of the pan. This will help the cake rise properly. Place a towel on the countertop and gently knock the entire pan on the counter several times to release any air bubbles and ensure the pattern on your bundt pan will be filled. Do not fill the bundt pan more than 3/4 full. If you have leftover batter, spoon it into cupcake forms and bake along side the cake for 18-20 minutes. I needed to do this because the rose bundt cake pan is a medium sized pan and there was too much batter for this pan.

Place into a preheated 350 degree oven and bake for 50 minutes. Cake is done when a toothpick tester comes out clean. Cool in pan on top of baking rack for 30 minutes or so. Once mostly cooled, invert onto serving platter and allow to cool completely for another hour.

Optional glaze ingredients: 1 shot glass of Kahlua liquor
Sugar (you can use 1/4 cup granulated or 1 cup powdered)
2 TBSP butter

To make the glaze: Melt the butter in a small saucepan on low. Add the Kahlua and sugar and whisk until well blended. Boil on low for approximately 5 minutes, watching to ensure it doesn't burn. Remove from heat. Allow to cool 15 minutes. Poke small holes into top of cake with a toothpick and then spoon and drizzle over cooled cake. Don't forget to drizzle some on top of the cupcakes...

I took this cake to my friend's house last weekend and it was a big hit. It didn't last very long...

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