Sunday, February 10, 2013

Ruby Slipper Cake

As an excellent party cake prepared in a bundt or tube pan, this confection is made all the more attractive by the ribbon of pink that winds its way through the contrasting yellow cake. Simple cakes appeal to me in this increasingly complicated world, so I suggest topping this with a quick and easy glaze. Sift one or two cups of confectioners’ sugar thinned with a small amount of whole milk or light cream until the mixture is thin enough to be poured or drizzled over the cooled cake.

Ruby Slipper Cake:

½ c. finely chopped pecans or walnuts 
One 16-oz. (461 g) pkg yellow cake mix
One 3.4-oz. (96 g) pkg vanilla instant pudding mix
1 c. sour cream (full-fat or light; do not use zero fat)
¼ c. water
2 eggs
One 3-oz. (85 g) pkg red jelly powder

Preheat oven to 325 deg. F. Grease and flour 10-in. tube or bundt pan. Sprinkle nuts on pan’s bottom. Set aside. Combine cake and pudding mixes. Add sour cream, water, and eggs, beating with electric mixer until very thick. Reserve ½ c. batter in separate bowl, stirring in jelly powder.

Spoon half plain batter into prepared pan. Drizzle half pink batter over plain batter, gently swirling and cutting in with knife blade. Cover with remaining plain batter, then pink batter. Repeat swirling motion. Bake 45 min., until cake springs back when lightly touched with fingertip. Cool on wire rack before glazing or sifting with sugar.

Note: There are three ways to test the “doneness” of a cake. The first and best is the “toothpick” test (the cake is done when a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean). That test doesn’t apply to cakes baked in bundt or tube pans. In that event, use the “fingertip test.” Some cooks measure “doneness” when a cake shrinks away from the pan’s sides. Dont use this test. By the time the cake shrinks away, it’s not only done, but dry. A hot cake will continue baking for about 10 min. after it comes from the oven. During that process, it’s normal for it to shrink from the pan’s edges.

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