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TIP OF THE DAY: Holiday Bundt Cakes

Classic Bundt Cake With Topping

Chai Spice Bundt

Gingerbread Bundt Cake

Orange Bourbon Pound Cake

Red Velvet Stained Glass Bundt Cake

Maple Leaf Mini Cakes

Here’s the current selection of dozens of bundt pan designs. [1] Classic bundt served with bourbon pecan sauce (photo courtesy Spice Islands). [2] Pumpkin cake in the Elegant Party Bundt pan. [3] Gingerbread Cake in the Elegant Party Bundt. [5] Orange Bourbon Cake in the Heritage Bundt Pan ( (photos [3], [4] and [5] courtesy King Arthur Flour).[4] Red Velvet cake in the Stained Glass Bundt (photo courtesy Nordicware). [6] Maple Leaf Pan for cakelets or muffins (photo courtesy Nordicware)

 

You don’t have to know how to decorate a cake to put a lovely one on the table. That’s one of the reasons bundt cakes are so popular.

Although a classic bundt pan (photo [1] is always lovely, Nordicware, inventor of the bundt pan, produces many elegant bundt pan designs, plus charming seasonal designs. We can’t help ourselves: Every couple of years, we buy another one.

This year it’s the Turkey Bundt Pan (how could we resist). Last year it was the Elegant Party Bundt (photo [2]): The flutes are narrower, creating smaller slices with no fuss. We’ve come to prefer it to the Classic Bundt Pan.

Fall themes include:

  • Autumn Wreath, with acorns and leaves wreath
  • Tom Turkey, a stand-up stunner you can use as a centerpiece
  • Many others, including loaf pans, mini loaves and cakelets
  •  
    We looked at the entire selection, and found these styles to be fall-appropriate, including Chanukah and Christmas:

  • Crown Bundt Pan
  • Diamond Cut Bundt Pan
  • Harvest Leaves Bundt Pan
  • Heritage Bundt Pan (giant swirls, photo [3])
  • Jubilee Bundt Cake (crown-like)
  • Kugelhof Bunt Pan, the classic European turban shape that led to the creation of the Bundt
  • Stained Glass Bundt Pan
  • Star Of David Bundt
  • Vaulted Cathedral Bundt Pan
  • Vintage Star Bundt Pan 
  •  
    HOLIDAY BUNDT RECIPES

    These recipes are from King Arthur Flour, the source for the finest baking ingredients and recipes.

    Be sure to read the tips from customers who have made the recipes (scroll to the bottom of each page).

  • Apple Spice Cake
  • Butter Rum Walnut Cake
  • Caribbean Rum Cake
  • Chai Spiced Pound Cake
  • Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cake
  • Gingerbread Bundt Cake
  • Maple Pound Cake With Mable Rum Glaze
  • Orange Cranberry Nut Fruit Cake
  • Orange Pound Cake With Bourbon Glaze
  • Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake
  • Rum Glazed Eggnog Cake
  •  
    In the words of The Great British Baking Show: Ready, Set, Bake!

    RECIPE: GINGERBREAD BUNDT CAKE

    This recipe from King Arthur Flour fills a 10- or 12-cup bundt pan.

    Ingredients For The Cake

  • 2-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons gingerbread spice*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1 cup water
  •  
    Ingredients For The Glaze

  • 1/3 cup rum or water
  • 1/2 teaspoon gingerbread spice; or 1/4 teaspoon ginger and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  •  
    __________________
    *Blend your own: 2-1/2 teaspoons ginger, 1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon cloves and 1/2 teaspoon allspice.
    __________________
     
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 10- to 12-cup bundt pan.

    2. WHISK together the flour, gingerbread spice, salt, baking soda and baking powder in a large bowl. Set aside.

    3. BEAT beat together the butter and sugar in a separate bowl, until fluffy.

    4. ADD the eggs one at a time, beating well and scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition. Stir in the molasses.

    5. ADD the flour mixture in three additions alternately with the water, starting and ending with the flour. Mix just until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top.

     

    6. BAKE the cake for 55 to 65 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. While the cake is baking…

    7. MAKE the glaze by stirring together the water spice and sugar. Set aside.

    8. REMOVE the cake from the oven, cool it in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a rack. Brush the cake with the glaze, and allow it to cool completely before serving.

     

    HISTORY OF THE BUNDT CAKE

    It started with a special cake pan, the Kugelhopf, from Vienna; but let’s begin a century later, with the modern bundt pan.

    The History Of The Bundt Pan

    The Bundt pan was created in 1950 by H. David Dahlquist, the founder of Minneapolis-based Nordic Ware, a manufacturer of kitchenware products. He did so at the request of Rose Joshua and Fannie Schanfield, members of the Minneapolis chapter of Hadassah, a Jewish women’s service organization.

    According to an article in the Fall 2005 issue of Generations, the newsletter of the Jewish Historical Society of the Upper Midwest, Fannie remembers a Hadassah luncheon when Rose lamented the quality of light and fluffy American-style cakes, and longed for the rich, dense cakes of her European childhood. These, however, required a special type of of pan—one with a hole in the center that allowed heat to penetrate heavy cake batter from all sides.

    With this type of form, a heavier batter could be baked without leaving under-baked dough in the center. Fannie’s husband arranged a meeting with Dahlquist, and Rose joined her to show Rose’s mother’s ceramic kugelhopf cake pan. This became the prototype for the Bundt pan (a contemporary aluminum version of the kugelhopf is shown in the photo at the right).

    Dahlquist modified the design by introducing folds in the fluted edges, and fashioned the pan out of aluminum. Some months later, a dozen Nordic Ware factory “seconds” were delivered to Hadassah member Mary Juster’s home, and Hadassah sold the pans to members for $4.00 each.
     
    The History Of The Kugelhopf

    The original kugelhopf, a Viennese specialty, is a sweet yeast-bread similar to brioche and panettone; the traditional version usually contains yeast, raisins or currants and is topped by a snowy layer of powdered sugar. It was a favorite of the Austrian princess Marie Antoinette (yes, that Marie Antoinette).

    Over the years, denser cakes were baked in the same fluted molds. The original molds were earthenware; later molds were made of glass or metal. The name kugelhopf derives from the German word Kugel, meaning round or ball (“Kugelkopf,” with a “k,” means “spherical head”), although the actual kugelhopf somewhat resembles a pleated hat like a turban or toque.

    How The Bundt Got Its Name

     

    Kugelhopf Cake

    Iced Apple Spice Bundt Cake

    Vintage Star Gingerbread Bundt

    [7] The Kugelhopf [8] became the Bundt, [9] which engendered many different designs, like this Vintage Star limited edition (photos [7] and [9] courtesy Nordicware, photo [8] courtesy King Arthur Flour.

     
    The way the story is told, the name bundt comes from the German word bund, which means “community” or “a gathering of people”; and that Dahlquist just added the letter “t” to the end and trademarked the word. However, there is a citation for a “bundt form” as early as the 1903 edition of the famous Milwaukee Settlement Cookbook†, 63 years before Dahlquist filed for his trademark on March 24, 1966. One can imagine that the Jewish women of Milwaukee had the cookbook and asked for a bundt pan. Still, Dahlquist was granted the patent.

    In 1960, the Good Housekeeping Cookbook showed a pound cake baked in a Bundt pan; that feature turned the Bundt into the number-one selling cake pan in America. But it was the 1966 Pillsbury Bake-Off, where the Tunnel of Fudge Cake recipe baked in a Bundt won second place, that launched America’s love for Bundt cakes.

    While many Americans spell Bundt with a capital “B,” which is the correct German spelling, for the sake of consistency with English names (e.g. angel food cake, apple pie), we’ve decided to use the small “b.” The exception is with recipe names, e.g. Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake.
     
    __________________
    †In the 1903 Milwaukee Settlement Cookbook, “Bundt form” is found on page 319 in the following text (under BUNDT KUCHEN, No. 2): “Grease Bundt form (a heavy round fluted pan with tube in center) well, and flour lightly. Cream butter and sugar well, add beaten yolks and beat, then the raised mixture and the rest of the flour, and lastly the beaten whites. Pour in pan, let rise until very light, and bake until well done and brown in a moderately hot oven, about forty-five minutes.” (Read details of the Settlement Cookbook source material). The Settlement Cookbook, first published in 1901 in Milwaukee to raise funds for the Settlement House for immigrants, is considered to be the most successful fund-raising cookbook in American history. It is still in print; the 1976 edition was named to the James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame.

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Spider Bundt Cake

    Spider Halloween Bundt Cake

    Spider Halloween Bundt Cake

    Spider Bundt Cake

    Spider Bundt Cake Recipe

    [1] and [2]: Two different stylings for a spider bundt cake. [3] Set toothpicks between the folds where you’ll pipe the legs. [4] Pipe the legs, add the face candies, and that’s it (all photos courtesy King Arthur Flour).

     

    For working folks, today’s the last day to bake something special for Halloween.

    Every year, King Arthur Flour bloggers MJ and Gwen team up to create new novelty treats for Halloween. This year, it’s a giant spider bundt cake.

    Simply mix the batter from your favorite seasonal recipe or boxed mix, brew up the buttercream, and pipe your way to a creepy cake.

    See the play-by-play photos here.

    1. DECIDE ON THE FLAVOR(S)

    You can have chocolate or vanilla bundt cake any time of the year. For Halloween, go for fall flavors:

  • Apple
  • Caramel Pecan or Caramel Pear
  • Carrot or Cranberry Carrot
  • Chocolate Rum
  • Cinnamon Spice
  • Ginger Spice
  • Maple or Maple Walnut
  • Pumpkin, Pumpkin Pecan
  • Sweet Potato Pecan
  •  
    For The Frosting

    For the frosting, either chocolate or vanilla buttercream will work with any flavor. But you can get as creative as you like, as long as it looks like a spider (i.e., a tan/coffee color is OK, orange isn’t unless you want a psychedelic spider).

    Here’s King Arthur’s recipe for easy vanilla buttercream, which will frost two cakes.

    You can divide the batch in half and create two colors/flavors. For chocolate frosting, simply split the vanilla frosting in half. To the chocolate half, dd 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa plus 1/4 cup black cocoa which creates a darker color and more intense chocolate flavor. Mix well and you’ll have chocolate frosting!
     
    2. DECIDE ON THE FACE(S)

    Go colorful so the face doesn’t disappear into the background color. The photos show two different styling options: the face on the front of the chocolate bundt, and on top for the the vanilla bundt.

  • For eyes: candy corn, peanut M&Ms, maraschino cherries.
  • For fangs: candy corn, red licorice shoe strings.
  • For toenails: candy corn, cinnamon candies or slivered almonds.
  •  
    You’ll also need toothpicks to assemble the cake, and a piping with a wide tip, such as Wilton’s 1A tip, makes the perfect size spider legs.
     
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to the temperature specified by your recipe, and bake the cake. BUT FIRST, remove 1/4 cup of the batter and bake it in a muffin pan to create a separate cupcake. You’ll see why later. As the cake bakes and cools…

     

    2. MAKE the buttercream. When the cake and cupcake are cool, move it to a serving plate. Insert the cupcake into the center of the bundt and pipe the top of the cupcake with frosting, to make the body of the spider.

    3. USING the toothpicks, lay out where you intend to pipe the spider’s legs. The recipe developers left three bunt folds free for the face, and left two folds between each leg for a total of 8 legs.

    4. CREATE the legs: Remove the toothpicks one at a time before piping. Starting from the top, slowly and smoothly pipe the frosting up and down to the bottom. Tip: Twisting your arm to the side as you travel down, keeping your arm flat instead of straight up, will prevent the tip from flattening and will keep the legs nice and round. Make a blob at the bottom for the feet.

    5. ADD the face. To attach candies to the front of the cake, pipe about a teaspoon of icing in-between the fold in the center (left photo, above). Angle the eye candy (pun intended) to create the expression you’d like. MJ and Gwen decided that turning the oval M&Ms slightly gave the spider a mildly sinister looky.

    6. PRESS the candy into the soft icing and hold for a moment to let it set in. Repeat with the fangs and the toenails.

     
      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Easy Party Cake (Actually, A Torte)

    You probably have favorite easy-to-make party recipes that save you time and energy while treating your guests.

    Today, we suggest one for dessert, from King Arthur Flour. It’s actually a torte, shorter than a layer cake. Here’s the difference between a cake and a torte.

    A tart is something different entirely, with a shortbread crust made in a fluted pan with a removable bottom. Unlike a pie, the shortbread crust enables the tart to stand on its own, without a pan, for a beautiful presentation.

    This fancy-looking recipe is from Becky Sue, the baker, photographer and recipe developer of Baking The Goods. Two layers of dense yellow cake are topped with meringue, cinnamon, and nuts; and filled with rich, pastry cream studded with fresh berries.

    It really is easy to make; even a novice baker will have no problems. There’s no frosting involved.

    Thanks to King Arthur Flour for sending us the recipe.

    It makes a nice impression at parties and dinner parties. Add candles for a birthday cake.
     
    RECIPE: BERRY BLITZ TORTE

    Prep time is 30 minutes, bake time is 30 minutes, plus assembly (total 90 minutes). The cake makes 8 to 10 servings.

    Shortcuts: Use preserves instead of fresh fruit; substitute instant vanilla pudding for the pastry cream.

    Here are step by step photos from Baking The Goods.
     
    Ingredients

    For The Cake

  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large egg yolks (save the whites for the topping)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1/4 teaspoon fiori di sicilia
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  •  
    For The Topping

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 3/4 cup superfine sugar* or granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup sliced, blanched almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Garnish: mixed berries, other fruit of choice, chocolate curls
  •  
    ________________
    *Also called caster sugar and baker’s special sugar, superfine sugar is screened to the finest granulation. Popular in our home because it dissolves easily in cold drinks (iced tea, cocktails, etc.), it also dissolves easily into butter. This creates a fine crumb and a more elegant cake. YOU CAN MAKE YOUR OWN: Superfine sugar is simply table sugar that is ground into smaller grains. Pulse table sugar in a food processor until it’s very fine. Keep the superfine sugar in a separate sugar bowl to bring out when you’re serving iced coffee and tea or making lemonade.
    ________________
     
    For The Filling

  • Pastry cream/crème pâtissière recipe
  •  

    Making The Torte

    Berry Blitz Torte

    Berry Torte Recipe

    fiori-di-sicilia-therosetable-230jpg

    [1] Making the torte. [2] Close-up (photos #1 and #2 courtesy King Arthur Flour). [3] Garnished and ready for prime time (photo courtesy BakingTheGoods.com. [4] Fiori (or fior) di Sicilia—flower of Sicily—is used by bakers to provide an elegant floral-citrus flavor to cake and other foods. Here’s more about it (photo courtesy The Rose Table).

  • Fresh fruit of choice: blackberries, blueberries, raspberries or sliced strawberries
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease two 8″ or 9″ round cake pans. If using parchment, lightly grease the pans, line with parchment rounds, and lightly grease the parchment as well.

    2. BEAT the butter, sugar, salt, and egg yolks in a medium-sized mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in the vanilla/fiori, milk, baking powder and flour. Spread the mixture in the prepared pans (the batter will barely cover the bottom of the pans).

    3. BEAT the egg whites until light. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until the meringue is smooth, glossy, and somewhat stiff (but not stiff enough to form stand-up peaks).

    4. SPREAD the meringue atop the cake batter, and sprinkle with the almonds, cinnamon and sugar. (Note: If you’re using fiori di sicilia, omit the cinnamon.) Bake the cakes for 30 minutes, until lightly browned.

    5. REMOVE the cakes from the oven, allow them to cool for 15 minutes, then loosen the edges and gently turn them out onto a rack to cool completely. If some of the almonds fall off during this process, just sprinkle them back on top.

    6. ASSEMBLE: Place one of the cake layers, meringue side up, on a serving plate. Spread with the pastry cream. Add a layer of fresh berries. Top with the second cake layer, meringue-side up. Serve immediately, or refrigerate until serving time.

     
    THE DIFFERENT CAKE TYPES

    Check out our beautiful Cake Glossary, featuring all types of cake.

      

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    RECIPE: Pumpkin Cinnamon Streusel Cake

    For Thanksgiving, everyone focuses on the dessert pies: pumpkin pie, pecan pie, apple pie.

    But what about the rest of the week—or the entire months of October and November—when you want something a bit lighter than pie?

    King Arthur Flour solved our dilemma with their delicious Pumpkin Streusel Cake Mix. We stocked up last year after Thanksgiving, when it was half price; but it’s $9.95 full price at KingArthurFlour.com is still worth it.

    Why pay triple the price of a supermarket cake mix? It’s all in the quality of the ingredients.

    The King Arthur mix is made with real pumpkin and Vietnamese cinnamon. Even the flour in the mix—the highest grade milled—is better, as fans of King Arthur Flour can tell you.

    The mix includes a packet of cinnamon-streusel filling to make the swirl in the cake. You add butter, eggs, sour cream and water.
     
    TO MAKE A COFFEE CAKE

  • In addition to the instructions on the box, which can be used to make layer cakes or cupcakes, mix ½ teaspoon of baking soda into the dry cake mix.
  • Beat for just 30-60 seconds once all the ingredients are incorporated into the bowl.
  •  
    TO MAKE A COFFEE CAKE

    As an alternative, you can turn the mix into a pumpkin streusel coffee cake (photo #3).

  • Instead of using a bundt pan, spread the batter in a 9″ x 13″ baking pan. Sprinkle the streusel on top of the batter
  • Bake in an oven preheated to 350°F for 34 to 38 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  • Let the cake cool and keep it in the pan. To serve, cut into rectangles. Only cut as many rectangles as you need; the air that seeps into the cut surfaces will take away some freshness.
  •  
    To Make The Cake From Scratch

    Here’s a recipe.

       

    Pumpkin Streusel Bundt Cake

    /home/content/p3pnexwpnas01 data02/07/2891007/html/wp content/uploads/pumpkin streusel in heritage bundt kingarthur 230

    [1] A pumpkin cinnamon streusel bundt cake, glazed (photo courtesy King Arthur Flour). [2] The cake made in a Heritage bundt pan, also called a swirl bundt pan from Nordicware.

     
    WHAT IS STREUSEL?

    Streusel is a crumb topping made from butter, flour and sugar. It can also contain chopped nuts or rolled oats.

    It’s used on cakes and pies alike.

    Pronounced SHTROY-zul, the word derives from the German “streuen,” meaning to sprinkle or scatter. The American mis-pronunciation “STROO sul?” Fuggedaboudit.

    Streusel is used as a topping for a variety of pies, fruit crisps, cakes and pastries, most notably coffee cakes. A pie with a streusel topping is sometimes referred to as a “crumble pie.”

    Some people like big streusel crumbs, others prefer fine crumbs. The choice is yours as you pinch the crumbs together.

     

    Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake

    Pumpkin Streusel Cake Mix

    [3] Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake made from this [4] Pumpkin Streusel Cake Mix (photos courtesy King Arthur Flour).

     

    RECIPE: EASY STREUSEL TOPPING

    Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  •  
    Preparation

    1. COMBINE the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. With a pastry blender or fork, cut in the butter until fine crumbs form.

    2. USE your fingers to squeeze the fine crumbs into large clumps (or smaller as desired—we like large crumbs). Sprinkle over the top of the pie and bake per the recipe instructions. That’s it!
     
    THE HISTORY OF BUNDT CAKES

    First, there was the Austrian kugelhopf, a sweet yeast bread similar to brioche and panettone, made in a pan shaped like a chef’s hat or a turban.

    A Viennese specialty, it was a favorite of the Austrian Archduchess Marie Antoinette, who became the wife of King Louis XVI of France in 1770.

    Fast forward 180 years: Some Jewish ladies in Minneapolis couldn’t find any kugelhopf pans in the U.S., pans with pleated folds that their families had in the Old Country. They turned to a local manufacturer and convinced him to create a version of it. The bundt cake was born.

    The name bundt is a derivation of the German word for a gathering of people—exactly what you’ll have when there’s a bundt cake to be enjoyed.

    Here’s the history of the bundt cake.

     

      

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    FOOD FUN: Brownie Eyeballs For Halloween

    In prior Halloweens we’ve suggested Eyeball Jell-O, Eyeball Ice Cream, radish eyeballs for crudites and garnish, deviled egg eyeballs.

    If your specialty produce purveyor has imported them from Australia, where they’re now in season, fresh lychees (photo #2) make the best eyeball food: nothing to do but peel and eat them.

    RECIPE: BROWNIE EYEBALLS

    You can eat these as a snack, or use them as cupcake or ice cream toppers.

    Prep time is 45 minutes, chill time is 30 minutes.

    Ingredients For 16 Eyeballs

  • 1 10.25-ounce pouch fudge brownie mix
  • 1 cup Ocean Spray Craisins Original Dried Cranberries
  • 2 cups white chocolate chocolate chips or chopped white chocolate bar, melted
  • Tubes of decorative writing gel; green, red, black
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREPARE the brownies according to package directions. Bake just until just done

    2. TRIM the crisp edges from the brownie while warm; eat them as you wish. Crumble the remaining warm brownie into a medium mixing bowl.

    3. ADD the Craisins to the warm crumbled brownies and combine until a thick dough-like mixture forms. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls, pressing firmly.

    4. DIP the balls into the melted chocolate, letting the excess drip off. Place on waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until the chocolate is firm.

     

    Brownie Eyeballs

    Fresh Lychees

    [1] Brownie eyeballs for Halloween (photo courtesy Ocean Spray). [2] Fresh lychees, nature’s “eyeballs” (photo courtesy Livestrong).

     
    5. CREATE the eyeballs, first using red gel to make veins, green for center of the eye and black for the pupil.

    CHOCOLATE MELTING TIPS

  • Microwave 1 cup (6 ounces) of chips or chopped chocolate at a time. Use a small, microwave-safe bowl and melt on high (100% power) for 1 minute. Stir.
  • Microwave at additional 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth.
  • If your chocolate seizes or needs additional thinning for dipping, add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil and blend well. If more oil is needed, add up to 1 teaspoon more to achieve desired results.
  •   

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