Saturday, October 30, 2010

Bundt Cake Season Two

Here are the bundt cakes of Bundt Cake Season Two. I had to scour my old Facebook posts to find out what I made and when. The date listed is the date I posted about it, so it may or may not be the actual date I baked the cake.

#1 - Chocolate Hazelnut Orange Pound Cake. This bundt cake is an an orange-flavored cake with bits of chocolate (rather than an orange-chocolate cake) and the hazelnuts are ground up, rather than in bits. I believe the purpose of grinding them was to for it have a hazelnut flavor throughout. If I were to make it again, I think I'd just chop the hazelnuts. I don't remember the cake being particularly hazelnut-y, so I'd probably rather just have chunks of hazelnuts instead. (1/2/10) The recipe for this was from the Moosewood Restaurant Book of Desserts.

#2 - Cocoa Apple Cake. I was intrigued by the idea of chocolate and apples together, turns out it's quite tasty. It's got a bit of a Mexican chocolate flavor, there's allspice, in addition to, the cinnamon (and of course, cocoa) in the batter. The cake has dark chocolate chips and a mix of almonds, walnuts, & pecans as well as the aforementioned apples. (1/25/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook (put out by Nordic Ware, maker of many bundt pans, including mine).

#3 - Chocolate Ribbon Pound Cake. It's delicious, even if the ripple effect did not work out. (I realized later that I had accidentally used baking soda instead of baking powder, so I'm guessing that's why the ripple did not work--all the ripple bits sunk to the bottom, meaning they ended up at the top of the cake.) This is a sour cream poundcake (super moist!) with orange, chocolate chips, and chopped pecans, topped with an orange glaze. So good! I think that this may have been my favorite cake of BCS2. (2/1/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook.

#4 - Date Walnut Bourbon Cake. And yes, I picked a bourbon cake in honor of the Saints. I don't really remember much about this cake, except, the glaze needed at least twice as much bourbon as suggested in the recipe. It was a perfectly fine cake. (2/7/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook.

#5 - Meyer Lemon-Cranberry Cake. This was the most highly anticipated cake of BCS2. A friend from Oakland offered to procure the Meyer lemons called for in the recipe, so I would have the real deal. The best part was that instead of buying them, she pilfered them from a neighbor's tree, which made them extra special in my book. I'm sorry to report that I was somewhat disappointed in this one (probably because my expectations were so high). It looked lovely, though. And the Main Squeeze and his brother liked it. In fact, everyone else who tried it, liked it. So clearly, I'm the weirdo. What can I say? It was a bit dry to me. I still think I'd like to give it another whirl at some point in the future. (3/1/10) I found this recipe on the Food Network's web site while searching for bundt cake recipes.

[In one of those serendipitous moments, I was listening to Car Talk on NPR, when they mentioned bundt cakes! Now, as those of you who are familiar with the show know, they have been known to recommend bringing your mechanic sweets to get on his (or her) good side. Imagine my happy surprise when I heard the Car Talk guys recommend bringing a bundt cake if you really need to bamboozle your mechanic. "Brownies are fine for a simple job, but if you really want to throw them off, bring a bundt cake." (Not an exact quote, I don't think, but as close as I could remember.) No, I didn't actually bring my mechanics a bundt cake, but I have brought them donuts before. Here's a fun fact: I was on Car Talk, back in '98, I believe it was. (3/6/10)]

# 6 - Mexican Chocolate Cake. I did not love this cake. It was pretty boring. The glaze (just a simple chocolate & cinnamon one) was a hit with our guests that evening. The recipe was for bundt cup cakes (I should get a bundt cupcake pan.), but I just made it in my regular bundt pan. It was on the small side. (3/7/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook.

# 7 - Black Mocha Cake with a Chocolate-Kaluha Glaze (which turned out to be more of a ganache). Although a bit of an aesthetic mess, it is quite moist and delicious. This is actually a repeat from BCS1. This is one of the few bundt cake recipes that I've found that isn't a pound cake or pound-cake adjacent. It's like a regular chocolate cake. And the glaze I stole from a different cake (the Chocolate Grand Marnier cake that started Bundt Cake Season) and substituted Kaluha for Grand Marnier, since we were having Mexican food for dinner. The reason it was a bit of an aesthetic mess, was because I had asked the Main Squeeze to take it out of the oven for me, and he misunderstood my instructions--he turned it out of the pan immediately, rather than letting it cool for 10 minutes or so, first. It was still very tasty, so no harm done. (3/15/10) The recipe for this was from the Moosewood Restaurant Book of Desserts.

#8 -Cocoa Ripple Currant Cake. This time, the ripple actually worked! In fact, it's a double ripple. This cake was made using my brand new, totally amazing, KitchenAid 90th Anniversary Stand Mixer, which many folks chipped in to get me for my 40th birthday. Depending on the weather, this could have been the last bundt cake of the season, though there was one more I want to squeeze in... (4/20/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook.

#9 - Cranberry Pecan Cake with an Orange Glaze. Tasty, but I should have made the glaze thicker so there could be more of it. I actually took a chance and changed the recipe--I substituted butter for shortening (I am wary of shortening)--and it turned out fine. (4/28/10) The recipe for this was from the Bundt Cookbook.

And so ended Bundt Cake Season Two. As you can see, Bundt Cake Season Two was shorter than Season one--though I made more cakes in BCS2 (nine) than BCS1 (seven--though one was made twice, so one could argue that there were eight cakes in BCS1)--running from January through April vs. late November through mid-May. So, as you can see, Bundt Cake Season is a moving target.

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