Monday, October 17, 2011
Here's a quick and easy cake to have when you're craving those warm autumnal spices. Now that there's a chill in the air, it's nice to have something warm and cozy baking in the oven, don't cha think?
Ok, yes, I know you can barely see the cake in this picture, but look how gorgeous my cream cheese frosting turned out? Sometimes it's the simplest things in life that make me smile. :)
Oh, btw, speaking of which, the addition of the cream cheese frosting makes it delectable and yumtastic, but you do have other options, depending on the occasion.
If you're serving it with an afternoon tea, you might want something a little lighter and more delicate, so go ahead an omit the frosting (ouch, that almost hurts to say it), and just dust it with powdered sugar.
If you're celebrating someone's birthday, serve it warm out of the oven with some home made Cream Cheese Frosting Ice Cream. You could even make it more festive by sprinkling a little something over the ice cream, such as coconut, toffee chips, or chopped pecans.
But still I think my favorite way will always be just as I made it for the gang when Katie asked me to make a spice cake...covered with gobs of rich, decadent, satiny, smooth, sinful, fabulous, wonderful, velvety cream cheese frosting. Aaaaand there's that smile again. :)
I hope you'll try it!
2 cups cake flour*
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tbs pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 stick butter, softened
3/4 cup buttermilk**
Heat oven to 350F.
Grease and flour an 8x8" square pan. Set aside.
Toss all of your dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, salt, and brown sugar) in the bowl of your stand mixer or a large mixing bowl.
With a whisk, stir the dry ingredients thoroughly until you have a uniform mixture.
Add the butter and buttermilk to the flour mixture. Add the eggs to the batter. Pour the batter out into your prepared pan. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool completely. Top with Cream Cheese Frosting.
*You can use all purpose flour instead of cake flour, but cake flour will give you a finer crumb and a more tender texture.
**To make buttermilk, add a tbs of vinegar to 3/4 cup milk. Microwave for 30 seconds or let it stand on your counter until it comes to room temperature. Use as directed.
Instead of greasing and flouring your pan, you can also use a baking spray. Don't use a regular cooking spray, though. Use one that has flour in it and is meant specifically for baking.
You can buy Pumpkin Pie Spice blend in the spice aisle of your supermarket, but I always just blend it myself. In a small bowl, simply stir together 4 parts EACH of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, plus 3 parts of allspice. Then label it in a small container and use it in pies or cakes or rice pudding or frankly anything that requires cinnamon. And I ALWAYS add more than the recipe says to add. Just sayin'!