PINEAPPLE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE with PINK PEPPERCORN CARAMEL

PINEAPPLE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE with PINK PEPPERCORN CARAMEL adapted from Alex Guarnaschelli

CAKE
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 large pineapple, skinned, cored and cut into eight or nine 3/4-inch-thick slices  OR 1 LARGE can of pineapple slices or crushed works too
3/4 cup dark brown sugar 
1/2 cup WHOLE buttermilk  (do NOT use light or reduced fat)
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
2 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten 
1 cup all-purpose flour 
3/4 cup granulated sugar 
1 teaspoon kosher salt 
3/4 teaspoon baking powder 
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Maraschino cherries 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Heat a cast iron 9-inch skillet over medium heat and melt 2 tablespoons butter.
  • Add the slices of pineapple in a single layer and sprinkle the brown sugar over the fruit.
  • Add a maraschino cherry in the center of each pineapple ring.
  • Cook until the pineapple browns slightly, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the pineapple slices. Turn off the heat and keep warm.
  • Whisk together the buttermilk, vanilla, eggs and the remaining 6 tablespoons butter in a medium bowl until smooth.
  • Use a rubber spatula to stir in the flour, granulated sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda until completely smooth. (The batter will be fairly stiff)
  • Pour the batter over the pineapple.
  • Transfer the skillet to the center of the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake emerges clean, 40 to 45 minutes.
  • Cool for about 10 minutes before carefully inverting onto a serving platter. Cooling any longer may make cake stick. If you cool too much, quickly heat the bottom of the skillet before inverting.

CARAMEL
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup 
Juice from 1 LARGE lime 
1/4 cup COLD water
2 teaspoons (pink) peppercorns 

  • Combine the granulated sugar, corn syrup, lime juice and 1/4 cup cold water in a medium stainless saucepan.
  • Stir in the pink peppercorns and bring to a gentle simmer, cooking until the sugar is dissolved, and then cooking 10 minutes more.
  • Pour through sieve to remove large pepper pieces.
  • Set aside to cool slightly.
  • After cake is inverted pour the caramel over the cake.

 

LEMON CAKE with LEMON CURD FILLING, LEMON BUTTER FROSTING & CANDIED LEMONS

You’ll want to make the Lemon Curd and Candied Lemon slices first so they have time to chill and set up before you need them to assemble the cake.

LEMON CAKE with LEMON CURD FILLING, LEMON BUTTER FROSTING & CANDIED LEMONS

LEMON CURD FILLING
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1⁄2 cup fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon cornstarch
6 tablespoons butter
3⁄4 cup sugar
4 egg yolks, beaten

  • In medium saucepan, mix together lemon zest, 1/2 cup lemon juice and 1 tablespoon cornstarch until smooth.
  • Add butter and sugar, bringing mixture to a SLOW boil over medium heat.
  • Boil for one minute, stirring constantly.
  • In small bowl, with a wire whisk, beat egg yolks until smooth.
  • Whisk in a small amount of the hot lemon mixture.
  • Pour the egg mixture into the sauce pan, whisking well until well blended.
  • Reduce heat to low; cook, stirring constantly, 5 minutes or until thick DO NOT BOIL.
  • Pour mixture into medium bowl.
  • Cover with saran pressing so there is contact with the surface to prevent a skin from forming as it cools.
  • Cool to room temperature.
  • Refrigerate 3 hours.

CANDIED LEMON SLICES
Candied Lemons are super EASY to make!

1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons FRESH lemon juice
2-3 lemons sliced to 1/8-inch thickness

  • In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, water and lemon juice. Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer and add lemon slices in a single layer.


  • Simmer over medium-low for 15 minutes, gently flipping once or twice during the cooking process.


  • Transfer the lemon slices to a wire cooling rack or waxed paper and let cool.

 Let the candied lemons sit at room temperature for up to 24 hours before storing in an air-tight container.

CAKE
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 cup butter
1 1⁄4 cups white sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1 cup milk

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Grease and flour two 8 inch round pans.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

 

  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  • Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.
  • Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, mixing just until incorporated.
  • Pour batter into prepared pans.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes.
  • Invert onto wire racks to cool completely.

FROSTING
2 tablespoons FRESH lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons lemon curd
2 tablespoons WHOLE milk

  • Cream butter.
  • Add lemon zest and lemon juice.
  • Gradually add in powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons milk until well blended.
  • Add lemon curd, blending until smooth.

ASSEMBLY

  • With long serrated knife, split each cake layer in half horizontally, making 4 layers. THIS STEP IS OPTIONAL! I actually prefer just 2 layers most of the time. 😀
  • Place 1 layer, cut side up, on a serving plate.
  • Spread with half of the lemon filling.
  • Top with another layer, and spread with 1/2 cup frosting.
  • Press on final cake layer, and frost top and sides of cake with remaining frosting.
  • Top with candied lemons.
  • Refrigerate cake until serving time.

BLACKBERRY LEMON CURD CREAM CHEESE PIE

BLACKBERRY LEMON CURD CREAM CHEESE PIE
8 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1 LARGE egg
Juice of 1 lemon (1 1/2 tablespoon)
1 can COMSTOCK blackberry pie filling
1 cup lemon curd (jarred or FRESH made)
Prepared pie crust
whipped cream, for topping (optional)

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Beat cream cheese until fluffy.
  • Add sugar, salt, lemon juice and egg, mixing until smooth and creamy.
  • Pour into prepared pie crust.
  • Bake 20 minutes.
  • Spread blackberry filling evenly over cheese mixture.
  • Bake another 20 minutes.
  • Spread with lemon curd.
  • Bake 5 minutes more.
  • Cool COMPLETELY and/or chill before serving.
  • Add a dollop of whipped cream and serve.

BLUEBERRY LIME NO BAKE CHEESECAKE

BLUEBERRY LIME NO BAKE CHEESECAKE
CRUST
1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted

  • Stir together the graham crackers, ginger and brown sugar.
  • Add the melted buttered mix until well blended.
  • Press the crumbs firmly into bottom of a 9 inch springform pan.
  • Place in refrigerator while you prepare the sauce and cheesecake.

SAUCE
1 1/2 cups WILD blueberries
1/8 cup sugar
1 tablespoon water

  • Stir together the blueberries, sugar and water in a medium saucepan.
  • Cook over 5 medium heat 5 minutes until berries break down.
  • Use an immersion blender to blend well.
  • Pour entire mixture through a sieve into a clean sauce pan.
  • Cook a few minutes on medium heat until mixture thickens slightly.
  • Cool in refrigerator also while preparing cheesecake.

CHEESECAKE
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
2-8 ounce cream cheese, softened at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lime zest
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
2 teaspoons FRESH, FINELY grated ginger

  • Whip whipping cream 2-3 minutes in the bowl of a stand mixer bowl until stiff peaks form.
  • Transfer whipped cream to a clean bowl and refrigerate.
  • Add cream cheese and sugar to stand mixer bowl.
  • Mix on medium 2-3 minutes until creamy and smooth.
  • Add line zest, powdered sugar, vanilla and fresh ginger, mixing 1-2 minutes until fully incorporated.
  • GENTLY (so as not to deflate the whipped cream) fold in one third of the whipped cream with a spatula to lighten the cream cheese.
  • GENTLY fold in remaining whipped cream until ALMOST fully incorporated.
  • Pour over chilled crust and smooth out evenly.
  • Drop several spoonfuls of blueberry sauce over cheesecake.
  • Using a thin knife or wooden skewer, swirl sauce into cheesecake.
  • Chill at least 2 hours before serving.

LIME WHIPPED CREAM
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 teaspoon powdered sugar

  • Whip the whipping cream on high 3 minutes until stiff peaks form.
  • Add the lime zest and powdered sugar, whipping until incorporated.
  • Serve the cheesecake with a dollop of whipped cream and a drizzle of blueberry sauce.

NOTE:

  • Using a copper mixing bowl and beaters that have been chilled in the freezer make a for quicker whipping and fluffier whipped cream.
  • Blackberries substitute really well also.

P3 ~ PISTACHIO PLUM PLATZ

Anyone remember the old nightclub on the show Charmed? That is what inspired me to name this wonderful German Platz aka coffee cake.

P3 ~ PISTACHIO PLUM PLATZ
CAKE
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup unsalted butter,SOFTENED
2 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup WHOLE milk
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
3 LARGE black plums, sliced

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Spray shallow baking dish(es) with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  • Add the softened butter with a pastry cutter or using gloved hands (my preference) until mixture is like coarse crumbs.
  • Stream in eggs, milk and vanilla until well combined. Be sure to scrape down sides with a spatula to incorporate all the dry mixture. Mixture will be thicker and possibly lumpy JUST like it should be 😀
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth out evenly.
  • Place plums slightly overlapped on top of batter. Set aside and make crumb topping.

CRUMB TOPPING
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup crushed roasted with salt pistachios

  • Mix all together using your hands again until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Distribute topping evenly over top of plums.
  • Bake 35-40 minutes or until fruit is soft and cake is cooked through.

NOTES: Other fruits that substitute well are peaches, cherries or nectarines .

AUNT SHARON’S CHOCOLATE BUTTERMILK CAKE, OR IS IT?

I’ve always called this Aunt Sharon’s Chocolate Buttermilk cake because I got the recipe from her when I was a teenager, but I have been making it from scratch with my own flourish (specialty quality ingredients as in the homemade rum vanilla, cocoa and cinnamon) for more years than I care to admit, so is it hers or is it mine now? I have tried other recipes over the years, always looking for that new PERFECT recipe, but ALWAYS come back to this one because it just works EVERY time!

CHOCOLATE BUTTERMILK CAKE

CAKE
2 cups KING ARTHUR all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup QUALITY buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
2 LARGE eggs
2 sticks butter, room temperature
4 heaping tablespoons QUALITY cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
1 cup boiling water

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • If you are going to cut and layer this cake prepare the jelly roll pan with parchment paper and non-stick cooking spray, otherwise leave it un-greased.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar and salt. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, stir together the buttermilk, baking soda, vanilla and eggs. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and add the cocoa.
  • Whisk together to combine.
  • Pour the boiling water in the pan and allow it to bubble a bit, then turn off the heat.
  • Pour the chocolate mixture into the flour mixture stirring together for a minute to cool the chocolate.
  • Pour in the egg mixture, stirring together until smooth, then pour into a jelly roll pan (rimmed baking sheet) and bake for 20 minutes.

CHOCOLATE FROSTING for sheet cake
1 3/4 sticks butter
4 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
4 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
6 tablespoons WHOLE milk
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups (1 pound bag) powdered sugar

  • Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat.
  • Add the cocoa powder and stir until smooth.
  • Add the milk, vanilla and powdered sugar, stirring together.
  • Immediately after removing the cake from the oven, pour the warm icing over the top. You’ll want to avoid doing much spreading, so try to distribute it evenly as you pour.

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM for layer cake
1 pound butter, softened
7 cups (2-1 pound bags) powdered sugar
4 heaping tablespoons QUALITY cocoa powder
4 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1 tablespoon WHOLE milk

  • Cream butter.
  • Sift together the cocoa, cinnamon and powdered sugar into the creamed butter and blend well.
  • Add vanilla, blending well. If too stiff add 1 tablespoon WHOLE milk to thin.

CHOCOLATE CHINESE FIVE SPICE CAKE

So, I admit it, the Kid’s Baking Championship inspired me on this one! If they can do it, I can do it I figured and this time it worked! 😀

CHOCOLATE CHINESE FIVE SPICE CAKE

CAKE
1 cup AP flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoon Chinese 5 Spice Blend
1 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
2/3 cup finely chopped or grated bittersweet chocolate
1/4 cup brewed coffee or espresso, Chai tea, or apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup sugar

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, Chinese Five Spice Powder and baking soda in a bowl.
  • In a small bowl, mix the coffee (or chai tea/apple cider vinegar) and diced chocolate.
  • Stir vigorously until the chocolate has fully melted – don’t leave any lumps of chocolate.
  • Add vanilla extract and buttermilk to mixture, and blend well.
  • Set mixture aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat the egg and sugar in a bowl until light and airy, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the chocolate mixture and mix well with a large spoon.
  • Add the flour mixture and stir until fully mixed with no lumps.
  • Pour mixture into two well prepared cake pans.
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Remove cake pans from oven and let cool fully to room temperature.
  • Remove from cake pans.
  • When pans are cool to the touch, remove from pans and let sit on cooling rack at least another hour to cool, otherwise chocolate ganache will melt if cake is still warm.

GANACHE
1 cup heavy cream
12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon Chinese 5 spice powder

  • Place chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
  • Sprinkle with Chinese 5 spice powder.
  • Heat heavy cream to JUST before boiling.
  • Pour over chocolate chips and spice and let sit for 4-5 minutes – do not stir.
  • Whisk the mixture until it thickens and becomes a rich, dark chocolate brown.
  • Pour a small amount of ganache over top of one layer of cake and top with other layer. Set aside to cool.
  • Let remaining ganache cool to room temperature, so it is thick, but still spreadable.
  • Generously coat cake in ganache, running a flat spatula along the sides and top to make a smooth cake.
  • Top with chocolate sprinkles, cinnamon Sticks, and a very light dusting or five spice powder or cinnamon sugar, or crushed walnuts.
  • Chill for 2 hours, up to two days before serving.
  • Cut into slices and serve.

CHOCOLATE CARAMEL BANANA BUCHE DE NOEL

I went super simple on this, but you can get as carried away with decorations as you want. This cake is great, FULL of flavor even without the ganache! I also made half of the recipe for just the 2 of us so it was more of a twig or branch than a log, but didn’t impact the flavor 🙂

CHOCOLATE CARAMEL BANANA BUCHE DE NOEL

CAKE
1 cup cake flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1/2 cup mashed ripe banana (about 1 medium)
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla extract
3 egg whites
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Spray a 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with non stick cooking spray; line with parchment paper and spray the top of the parchment paper with non stick cooking spray; set aside.
  • Sift together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs for 5 minutes; add 1/2 cup sugar, banana and vanilla.
  • In a small mixing bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form.
  • To the egg whites gradually beat in remaining sugar, a tablespoon at a time, on high until stiff peaks form.
  • Add flour mixture to banana mixture; mix gently until combined.
  • Fold in egg white mixture.
  • Spread into the prepared pan.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
  • Cool 5 minutes; run a knife around the edges to loosen.
  • Turn cake onto a kitchen towel dusted with confectioners sugar.
  • Gently peel off parchment paper.
  • Roll up cake in towel jelly-roll style, starting with a short side.
  • Cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Once the roll is cooled, unroll the cake.
  • Because the cake has cooled in a rolled position it will easily re-roll.

VANILLA BEAN FILLING

2 cups heavy whipping cream, chilled
⅔ cup (80 grams) confectioners’ sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat cream, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla bean seeds at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Unroll cake and evenly spread the filling.
  • Roll back up.

TOPPING ~ WHIPPED GANACHE FROSTING Makes about 2 cups

4 (4-ounce) bars (460 grams) high-quality dark (60% to 65%) chocolate, chopped
2 cups heavy whipping cream

  • Place chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl.
  • In a small saucepan, bring cream JUST to a simmer below a boil over medium-high heat.
  • Pour cream over chocolate; cover and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Whisk together chocolate and cream until smooth.
  • Let stand until ganache reaches room temperature, 45 minutes to 2 hours. (If necessary, refrigerate for 15 minutes.)
  • Transfer ganache to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
  • Beat at medium-high speed until a spreadable consistency is reached, 5 to 8 minutes.
  • Spread or drizzle on the cake.

APPLE LEMON HARVEST BUNDT CAKE

I combined my 3 favorite recipes; Shenandoah Apple Cake, Meyer Lemon Cake and Apple Cream Cheese Swirl Cake into a single recipe to make my Harvest bundt cake. and love it so much that this is now my favorite recipe!  This recipe makes two 9-inch bundt cakes or one 10-inch plus 2 small decorative bundt cakes or 6-8 small decorative bundt cakes.

The secret is the swirl of orange cream cheese that winds its way through the sweet tartness of the Meyer lemons and the crisp sweetness of the Honey Crisp apples to combine into the quintessential Thanksgiving dessert.

APPLE LEMON HARVEST BUNDT CAKE
SWIRL

8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1 LARGE egg
1 tablespoon FRESH orange zest

  • On medium speed beat cream cheese until creamy in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Reduce speed to low and add powdered sugar, flour, egg and orange zest, beating until smooth.
  • Cover and chill while preparing batter.

BATTER
2 3/4 cups sugar
2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest
1 tablespoon orange zest

  • In a mixing bowl combine sugar and zest with a fork.
  • Set aside 10-20 minutes so flavor infuses sugar.

3 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon FRESH ground nutmeg
1/2 cup avocado oil
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
6 LARGE eggs at room temperature
1/4 cup apple cider
1/4 cup Meyer lemon juice
1 cup sour cream
2 LARGE Honey Crisp or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Prepare bundt cake pan(s) with non-stick cooking spray and a flour dusting.
  • In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of your stand mixer cream the avocado oil and butter together.
  • Add the infused sugar, beating until well incorporated, light and fluffy.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Add apple cider, vanilla and lemon juice, blending well.
  • Alternately add flour mixture and sour cream, starting and ending with flour mixture JUST until blended after each addition.
  • Fold in apples.
  • Spread half of mixture into prepared pan(s).
  • Remove swirl mixture from the refrigerator and spoon evenly on top of batter, avoiding the edges.
  • Top with remaining batter.
  • Using a knife, gently pull the blade back and forth through the cake to swirl the cream cheese mixture into the batter. You don’t want to mix, just gently swirl.
  • Bake 60-75 minutes for a LARGE bundt pan until tester comes out clean. For the smaller decorative pans I start checking them around 35 minutes.
  • Let cool 15-20 minutes.
  • Invert and transfer to a wire rack to COMPLETELY cool before the syrup and glaze.

SYRUP
1/4 cup FRESH Meyer lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water

  • Combine ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until sugar is COMPLETELY dissolved.
  • Brush over COOLED cake.
  • Allow cake to COMPLETELY cool again before glazing.

GLAZE
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4cup WHOLE milk
3tablespoons QUALITY honey
2 tablespoons FRESH Meyer lemon juice
2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest

  • Whisk all together in small bowl until smooth.
  • Drizzle over COMPLETELY cooled cake.
  • Garnish with additional zest.

NOTE:

  • THE BEST ADVICE, I can offer you on this recipe is prep work! Do ALL of the zesting, juicing and chopping before you begin a single step!!!
  • Then infuse the sugar as directed as your second step before you begin the swirl so it allows more time for the sugar to be flavor infused.

PUMPKIN PINEAPPLE CRUNCH CAKE aka HARVEST DUMP CAKE

Once upon a time this would have been called a DUMP cake, but when I saw a version of it on FaceBook from My Baking Addiction where they called it a Pumpkin Crunch Cake I knew I had to make my own version. This cake epitomizes fall flavors and is wonderful cold or even at room temperature! Don’t forget a dollop of whip cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon. I made some other modifications for taste and we now call it Pumpkin Pineapple Crunch Cake aKa modified HARVEST DUMP CAKE.

Pumpkin Pineapple Crunch Cake aKa modified HARVEST DUMP CAKE Serves 12-18

Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 1 hour Chill Time: 3 hours Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple (drained WELL)
4 LARGE eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons PURE vanilla extract
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (apple pie spice works well too)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup golden raisins or currants (currants are my favorite)
1 box yellow or white cake mix
1 cup chopped walnuts divided 3/4 cup + 1/4 cup
1 cup unsalted butter, melted
cinnamon sprinkle

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Butter a 9×13 inch baking pan.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, eggs, sugars, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice and salt and well combined and smooth.
  • Fold in crushed pineapple and raisins.
  • Pour mixture into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
  • Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over the pumpkin mixture, followed by the 3/4 cup of chopped walnuts and use you hands to gently press it into the pumpkin batter.
  • Evenly drizzle the melted butter over the entire cake.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes. Check your cake. If the top is becoming too brown, cover the cake with a piece of foil for the remaining bake time. Continue baking an additional 15-20 minutes or until set.
  • Remove pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Chill for a few hours before serving.
  • If desired, top with whipped cream, remaining chopped walnuts and a sprinkle of cinnamon before serving.

NOTES:

  • Even if serving at room temperature be sure to chill the cake first!
  • If you don’t have any evaporated milk you can substitute 3/4 cup whole milk and 1/4 cup heavy cream.

PINEAPPLE RAISIN STREUSEL PUMPKIN PIE

The streusel topping is what turns this ordinary pumpkin pie into something spectacularly perfect for your fall holiday celebrations!

PINEAPPLE RAISIN STREUSEL PUMPKIN PIE
PIE
1 batch your favorite pie crust dough or 1 sheet Pillsbury pie crust
3 LARGE eggs
15 ounce can solid pack pumpkin
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup PACKED brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon QUALITY cinnamon
1 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice blend

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • On a lightly floured surface prepare pie crust and transfer to a 9 inch deep dish pie plate. Trim and flute edges.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, eggs, heavy cream, sugars and spices.
  • Pour into crust.
  • Bake 45 minutes.

STREUSEL
1 cup AP flour
1/2 cup PACKED brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup COLD butter, cubed
1/3 cup FINELY chopped crystallized pineapple
1/3 cup golden raisins

  • In a small bowl combine the flour, brown sugar and walnuts.
  • Cut in butter pieces until crumbly.
  • Add in pineapple pieces and raisins mixing until well coated and distributed.
  • Remove pie from oven and GENTLY sprinkle streusel over the pumpkin filling.
  • Lay a piece of foil over top gently to prevent burning.
  • Bake 15 minutes more, remove foil and bake another 10 minutues or until a knife comes out clean when inserted into pie center.
  • Cool on wire rack.
  • Refrigerate leftovers.

CHERRY PINEAPPLE BUNDT CAKE

CHERRY PINEAPPLE BUNDT CAKE adapted from Sweet Peas Kitchen

This Cherry Almond Bundt Cake is a refreshing dessert cake full of flavor that lends its beauty to any backyard BBQ or church social, but is also great for holiday buffet tables with the perfect slices of bundt style cake.

CAKE
1 ½ cups unsalted butter, room temperature
3 cups sugar
5 LARGE eggs, room temperature
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups whole milk, room temperature
2 teaspoons QUALITY PURE pineapple extract
1 cup COMSTOCK cherries (save the rest of the can for garnish at the end)

  • Preheat the oven to 325°.
  • Generously grease and flour bundt pan proper.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
  • Pour the cherries into a strainer to drain the glaze from the cherries into a large bowl. Keep the glaze. The glaze will be thick and take some time to drain. Shake the colander periodically or move the cherries around with a large spoon to separate them from the glaze.

  • In a large bowl or stand mixer cream the butter until smooth.
  • Add the sugar and continue beating it until it’s light and fluffy.
  • Add the almond extract, mixing until incorporated.
  • Add the eggs ONE AT A TIME making sure each one is mixed before adding the next egg.
  • Gradually alternate dry ingredients and milk, beating until incorporated after each addition.
  • Pour 1/2 of your batter into the prepared bundt pan.
  • Add 3/4 cup of the cherries to the batter and swirl them into the batter.
  • Spread a VERY THIN layer of the glaze on top.
  • Add the remaining batter followed by the remaining cherries and another VERY THIN layer of glaze.
  • Cover the bundt pan with aluminum foil.
  • Bake for 65-70 minutes. The sides of the cake should be slightly pulling away from the pan and a cake tester should come out clean.
  • Remove from oven and cool at least 10-15 minutes on a wire rack. The pan should be lukewarm, but cool to the touch.
  • Invert bundt pan and tap on several sides with a table knife to release the cake onto the wire rack. Let cool completely before glazing.

GLAZE
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
6 teaspoons heavy whipping cream or milk
¼ teaspoon QUALITY almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

  • Place the cream cheese in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, to soften.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, add the cream cheese, and powdered sugar, stir to combine.
  • Add the heavy cream, almond extract and salt and continue to stir until it thickens.
  • Drizzle the glaze over the cake.
  • Garnish with sliced almonds

GARNISH

  • Use remaining Comstock sherries around the edge of the bundt cake before serving. To make it even more decadent you can add a fudge drizzle over the cherries or the whole cake!

Store in an airtight container for up to a week. This cake freezes exceptionally well IF it is frozen soon after baking. Be sure to wrap it at least twice and place in a large ziplock bag to prevent it from drying out or freezer burn. If you wrap it well, it will taste just like a fresh cake after thawing.

FLAVOR VARIATIONS

  • Pineapple – Make it with crushed canned pineapple instead. It is an entirely different flavor that is scrumptious.
  • COMSTOCK – just about any pie filling flavor lends itself to this cake, but I especially like the Berry medley, peaches or sour cherries.