Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Birthday Cake


Is it very pathetic to have to bake one's own birthday cake? I think not. It's the only way to get the one you like best! By Internet fate, I came across a cake the other day that sounded like heaven. It only took a microsecond for me to decide it was what I wanted on my birthday. Fortunately my husband doesn't really plan ahead too much, so I knew that I could bake it and it wouldn't have to compete with any other dessert!

It was everything I thought it would be -- the perfect cake for me. You know that I am a cake snob. I do like my scratch cakes. Fortunately I'm not a snob about how they look -- the taste is all that matters. As you can see, this cake was not a beauty by any stretch, but it was delicious. Sweet and tangy, paired with homemade vanilla ice cream, it was sublime. If I had not just "pigged out" on barbecue for dinner, I would have eaten two pieces!

Now, the recipe called for baking this cake in a 9 by 12 pan, which I do not have. I used a 13 x 9, and by all logic it should have baked less time. It wasn't even close to done in 40 minutes. There's a lot of batter there, so I think the time must be wrong. Mine cooked closer to 50 or 55 minutes. I say set the time for 40 minutes and then keep an eye on it. You can see my cake fell in the middle a little. Scratch cakes often do that, but I could have made it worse by all the opening of the oven door to check on it. I am altering the recipe to use a 13 x 9 pan, as well as a longer baking time.

You can click on the picture for a close-up, but I'm sorry, you still can't taste it.

Buttermilk Cake with Caramel Icing

4 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
1 c. butter, softened
3 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
2 c. buttermilk
6 egg whites
Grease and flour a 13 x 9 pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda and baking powder. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with buttermilk. Beat in egg whites (no need to whip the egg whites – it’s not that kind of cake). Pour into a prepared 13 x 9 cake pan and bake at 350 degrees F for about 50-60 minutes or until the top of the cake springs back if lightly touched with a finger (I used a cake tester).


1 c. sugar
½ c. buttermilk
½ t. baking soda
1 T. white corn syrup
¼ c. butter
½ t. vanilla
Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a slow boil. Boil without stirring for 5 to 7 minutes, or until icing starts to turn dark. Do NOT allow icing to reach soft ball stage; icing should be caramel in color, but not sticky like caramel. Icing should be easily pourable.
Remove cake from oven and pour on icing immediately.
Allow to rest on the counter. Serve warm or room temperature.

UPDATED: I halved the cake and icing recipes for a 9 x 9 cake pan and it turned out perfect. I baked it for 45 minutes at the same temp.



Barb Szyszkiewicz said...

Happy birthday!

Michelle said...

This cake sounds like something I'd like too! Happy belated birthday Barbara!

Vintagemary said...

Hi - I tried this cake today. My kids loved it, and my son ate 4 pieces. The only thing is that it needs a really big pan - I tried the 12X9 - it was too full. Happy Birthday - I enjoy reading your blog - thank you!

Unknown said...

You know, I mentioned that I baked the cake in a 13 x 9 and it was really full. I was wondering how it all fit in a 12 x 9. I'm going to alter the recipe to read 13 x 9. With all the trouble I had getting it done, I think maybe it was the pan size that was wrong as well as the time!