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Cake

August 02, 2013

Candle Cake Design ~ A Work in Progress

 

KitchenMage-candle-cake

Light one candle for all we believe in,
That anger not tear us apart;
And light one candle to bind us together
With peace as the song in our heart!
Light One Candle ~ Peter Yarrow

One of my friends is having one of those roundy birthdays soon. Those milestone birthdays still mean something, even at 40, 50, or 60 when the annual ones lose their luster. In this case, part of what it means is an excuse to throw a party. A huge one.

Hours of live music, potluck dinner, friends from near and far. someoneElse had a rehearsal yesterday. From what I hear the music is a fantastic assortment of (mostly local) talent. The cooks out here get serious when it comes to potlucks and midsummer means their gardens are bountiful.

This is going to be fun.

Not being a musician but still wanting to contribute something more significant than a side-dish, I offered to make the cake. At the time, the guest count was ~50 and the party had no particular theme. Fifty people means a lot of cake so I started playing with ideas for how to make it all work.

Fast forward a bit and plans have firmed up.

Continue reading "Candle Cake Design ~ A Work in Progress" »

November 10, 2009

Butternut Squash Spice Cake with Amaretto Glaze Recipe

Butternut Spice Cake

Ranks of gray misty rain march up the valley, the cats who are not ours are huddled on the porch, and I swear night fell about 3:30 this afternoon. Perfect weather for having the oven on all day - and between roasting the squash and baking the cake, I have an excuse to warm up my kitchen for a few hours. (I am only doing it so I can get a non-Halloween image; I promise we will not enjoy the cake at all. Really.)

I adapted this recipe a few weeks ago, when some good friends celebrated the tenth anniversary of their move to the fog valley with a potluck. The only request was that we use locally produced food if possible, something that is not exactly a stretch for most people around here, although mid-October isn't exactly the time of prime produce. I wanted to make dessert but the only fruit on hand was apples and pears, neither of which got me too excited. The squash, however, was abundant and diverse.

Starting with a recipe for a sweet potato cake, I swapped in squash, reduced the oil and added applesauce for moisture, then tossed in a hefty dose of fresh spices. After infusing the olive oil with sweet bay, I toasted and ground cardamon, then grated ginger and nutmeg. The squash and applesauce make for a moist, but not heavy, cake; and the mix of fresh spices make me swoon. Iced, this is a cake worthy of a party; unadorned it could be served as a coffeecake.

 

Continue reading "Butternut Squash Spice Cake with Amaretto Glaze Recipe" »

December 25, 2007

Bûche de Noël: It's done!

buche de noel with candied rosemary sprigs

Well it isn't the world's best picture and I went for simple decorations, but here it is. A minimalist Bûche de Noël with candied rosemary sprigs. The weather report says there may be snow before it is served. But what do the weather folks know, they predicted mushrooms! Merry Christmas (if you do that) and Happy Tuesday (if you don't) - see you all in a day or so with the rest of the photos of the madness.

December 24, 2007

Bûche de Noël: Chocolate Apricot Frosting Recipe

The crazy continues

frosting: all of the meringue and a pile of apricots

I'd love to sit and chat but I have a cake to frost. With this.

Chocolate Apricot Frosting Recipe

Cream 3/4 cup each butter with 3/4 cup powdered sugar + 1/3 cup cocoa

Beat 3 egg whites until foamy and slowly sprinkle in 3/4 cup powdered sugar. Beat to billowy, stiff  peaks.

Dice a handful of dried apricots, splash with amaretto and set aside for 30 min.

Gently fold 1/3 of meringue into the sweet chocolatey butter. Repeat with other 2 thirds. Add apricots and mix in gently. refrigerate until cake goes into oven, then set on counter to soften.

flickr set of this craziness:  Bûche de Noël

Merry, merry, merry!

If you are anything like me, you are just starting a rather complicated dessert and have no time for blogs...and therefore you probably aren't reading this.

Hmmm.

Maybe I need another lede.

clears throat

Continue reading "Merry, merry, merry!" »

January 14, 2007

Ginger Applesauce Cake

Ginger Applesauce Cake

Like many of my recipes, this came together from ingredients that happened to be on hand at the time and my vague idea of a desired flavor. I was making a simple, and oddly summery, lunch (a huge salad, prawns in sage butter, and fresh focaccia) for guests and wanted something a bit more appropriately seasonal to go with the snow that still lingers outside.

My other requirement for this dessert was simplicity. One bowl and one pan was just about right. If it did not require a trip to the store, so much the better. At this point, I was leaning towards brownies...again. I've made so many batches of brownies lately that I am sort of tired of chocolate. (as if) In any case, brownies clearly wasn't it.

Back to winter flavors. In Washington state, winter means apples. In my house last week, apples meant applesauce. Not a bad start. Applesauce cake fit the bill. Right season, ingredients on hand, one bowl, and one pan. One problem. Somewhat lacking in magic. You know: Not. Very. Exciting.

Continue reading "Ginger Applesauce Cake" »

September 13, 2005

the incredible, edible cake: recipe and backstory

CakebookThis is a well-loved cookbook. When I pick it up to bake a cake--it's usual purpose--I can tell which page I need based on how the pages feel. Can you tell that this page is where my favorite cake lives? It also happens to be the cake that was selected as most edible in the most recent DMBLGIT? competition and I've been promising the recipe so I'd better get on with it.

Continue reading "the incredible, edible cake: recipe and backstory" »

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