#67 Apple Walnut Cake with Caramel Cream Cheese Icing

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ANDREW !

“We made this exceptionally pretty cake for special orders only, but so many customers requested it that it became part of our standard cake repertoire. ”

Excerpt From: Jennifer Appel. “The Complete Magnolia Bakery Cookbook.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/idq2G.l

RECIPE LINK

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This recipe makes Magnolia Man think so much of his beloved France – walnuts from our trees, golden delicious apples, Bonne Maman caramel, and fine calvados from Normandy.

This cake was not difficult to make – but I cheated a little bit. I didn’t make the caramel myself. The Magnolia cookbook has the recipe, but I had a jar of Bonne Maman Caramel and I couldn’t resist the ease of using it (this time).

The recipe calls for this cake to be a two-layer cake. I decided to split the batter between three pans for three layers. All I needed to do was watch the bake time which was reduced a bit. It worked out.

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SOMETHING NOT-AS-USUAL: This recipe had three cups of flour – 2 cups all-purpose, 1 cup whole wheat. That is not unusual in the baking world, but it is for the Magnolia cookbook. The whole wheat created a cake more easy than usual to break and crumb. I managed to keep it together, but I did need to pay attention when handling it. The whole wheat also tends to “burn” more easily. This started to happen so I turned on the fan of our lovely convection oven.

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Walnuts. Lots of walnuts.
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Merci, maman – Bonne Maman.

I smiled after piping the caramel onto this cake. The cake doesn’t look like the Magnolia pictures – and I like mine more. Ha!

SWRILS? The instructions in the cookbook asks that you swirl the caramel on top of the cream cheese icing. I have NOT been able to swirls that looked like anything other than a heavy-handed mess. So, what to do? Google it! of course.

I got a good idea from a cupcake decorating video (which I can’t find at the moment) using a plastic sandwich bag.

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CHUNKY GOOD: Inside this cake are 1inch big chunks of apple and coarsely chopped walnut chunks.

Nothing delicate about this cake. It’s a dense, moist, pack-a-flavor-punch cake.

MAKE IT. SHARE IT.

#44, Devil’s Food Cake with Seven-Minute Icing and Coconut

This is the same recipe Allysa’s family has made for every birthday since the beginning of time, and the same cake we served at the bakery—but a different icing and the coconut garnish give it a whole new taste.

RECIPE LINK

I promised to bake a birthday cake for three of my students whose birthday’s are in November. I told them to choose any Magnolia Bakery recipe that I had not yet cooked and that I would make it for them. They chose Devil’s Food Cake. I chose the version in the book with the seven-minute icing and coconut.

Helas! This is all that is left

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of this

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But, it started like this..

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and then turned into this

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which folded into this…..

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then lastly to this (see below)

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MY CUP OVERFLOWETHED: The recipe called for three 9 x 2 inch cake pans. As I poured the batter in, I thought that the pans were too full and that a fourth pan could have been used. I was right. The cakes rose and poured over the sides of the pans – not disastrously. When a cake overflows the pan, the cake is actually pulled back down and flattened a bit. I was worried that the cake would not cook correctly throughout and there was a fear that the edges would burn. These fears did not come true. I just trimmed the droopy edges off and all was fine.

CONFETTI COCONUT: Dried, sweetened coconut is not available in Doha; at least I have never found it. Family Foods has freshly shredded coconut available sometimes. (Request at the vegetable weigh stations.) I recently found frozen, unsweetened coconut at Mega Mart. I toasted the shredded coconut in the oven (5 minutes under low broil). I didn’t try to sweeten it because the icing was already SO sweet. I had FUN throwing the coconut onto the iced cake. It turned out rather well.