Thursday, November 8, 2012

French Cherry Cake

French Cherry Cake: No whipped cream ... still great!
I am not being a drama queen! Not, not, not! This is what actually happened as I made this lovely French Cherry Cake yesterday morning. Having sneaked away for a brief holiday in the mountains, I’d taken a few ingredients along to make this little cake. Just as I stirred in the canned cherries, the hotel’s fire alarm began ringing. Thinking it would stop as soon as it started, I asked Ron to photograph the cake-in-progress. 

“But there’s a fire alarm!” he whinged. “Take the photo,” I growled. He did and I slipped the cake into the oven and set the timer. I was still wearing my bath robe when he peered over the balcony. “Smoke!” he yelled (this later turned out to have been mountain mist). The wail of the approaching fire engines was now audible over the scream of the hotel’s fire alarm. A little alarmed myself, all I could screech was: “My cake!” 

Throwing on some clothes, I barked panicky orders: “Pack the camera! Pack the computer! This is tomorrow’s blog!” But then things got serious. The lock on the fire door directly next to our room was broken, sealing us off from the nearest exit. We were on the fourth floor: In my mind’s eye, I saw us teetering at the edge of our balcony, flames creeping ever closer as TV crews recorded our dramatic rescue by a fire truck’s crane.

But that didn’t happen. The fire alarm stopped. The trucks departed. There was no fire. My cake was saved. And here it is!

French Cherry Cake:

2 c. “complete” pancake mix (see Note)
4 tbsp. icing sugar (“confectioners” or “powdered” sugar)
½ tsp. cinnamon
1-¼ c. water
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Half an 18-oz. (540 mL) can cherry pie filling

Preheat oven to 325 deg. F. Combine pancake mix, icing sugar, and cinnamon. Beat in water and vanilla until no lumps remain. Pour into 9-in. or 10-in. greased flan or pie pan, smoothing with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Pour half-a-can of cherry pie filling over batter, running a knife or spoon through batter to create a “marbled or ribbon” effect. Bake 50-60 min., until cake’s surface becomes golden. Serve with a spritz of whipped cream on the side. Yields 6 servings. 

Note: “Complete” pancake mix contains powdered eggs and milk. All you need to add is water. 

Further Note: My French Cherry Cake looks a little thin in the top photo because I halved the recipe and used a smaller flan dish than the recipe called for. I did that because my small dish has a lid, leaving me able to tote the pancake mix, icing sugar, and cinnamon in a zippered plastic bag inside the covered dish. Because I made a small flan dish and only half the batter, the small cake that resulted yielded 4 servings. Because it was small, I reduced the baking time to 45 min. Because it was delicious, we ate it all!

Add water to pancake mix, sugar, cinnamon.

Beat until mixture is smooth.

Pour batter into greased flan dish.

Grab some cherry pie filling ...

Spoon it on ...

Marble it into batter with back of spoon or knife. 

Pop it into the oven! That’s all there is to it, Dollinks!

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