10 September 2012

Brains...Brains...Brain Cake

I know, I know...strange name for a cake.  It was all I could think of.  This cake has all sorts of squiggly peaks and valleys.  I look at it and think about brains and, therefore, zombies.  I'm a big fan of The Walking Dead, so what else can I say.  This cake is really more like a coffee cake.  It has a nice dense crumb and isn't too sweet.  Any excuse to eat cake for breakfast is a good thing.

all my pictures come out a little
blurry this time.  oops.  sorry.
My brain cake does have one slightly difficult to come by ingredient -- crabapple jelly.  The good news is that you can substitute it with any jam or jelly that you like.  I have never seen crabapple jelly in a store, so unless you have some homemade in your pantry, chances are good that you will be substituting.  Switching flavors might be a good thing, since many other jam flavors (especially those that are not red in color) would bake this cake look less like brains.  I got my crabapple jelly from my best friend Emily.  She made it homemade with fruit from her grandmother's yard.  It's crazy good and tastes a little like cranberries or lingonberries.  So, thanks, Emily.

Brain Cake
makes one 8x8" cake

Print me, Please!!!

1 cup + 3 Tbsp all purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup + 3 T sugar, divided
1/4 cup butter flavor vegetable shortening
1 egg, beaten
1 t vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup jelly or jam (any flavor)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp apple pie spice
4 T butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350°.  Lightly grease an 8x8" baking dish; set aside.

Stir together 1 cup flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.  Cream together 1//3 cup sugar and shortening on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes.  Beat in egg, vanilla, and almond extract until well combined.  Add the dry ingredients and the milk, starting with the dry ingredients, adding the milk, then the rest of the dry ingredients, beating until well combined after each addition.  Scrape batter into the prepared pan; set aside.

Put the jelly or jam in a small microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute (depending on your microwave), or until the jelly is loose enough to be pourable, but not completely liquid.  Drizzle the jelly over the unbaked cake batter; set aside yet again.

In a small bowl, combine 3 Tbsp flour, 3 Tbsp sugar, cinnamon, apple pie spice, and melted butter.  Drizzle this mixture over the jelly and unbaked cake batter.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  You can put some whipped cream on the side if you like.

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