Thursday, 19 November 2009

Maple Syrup Bundt Cake


My work colleague, Janet, had a recent trip to America and, after lots of badgering, she agreed to sacrifice a bit of shoe-collecting-luggage-space and visit the Williams-Sonoma store in Tampa, Florida and pick up a couple of Bundt tins for me, as they won't ship to England (even after I wrote an email to their customer services pleading with them!).

I went online to their site and selected two of their exclusives - the Autumn Leaf Bundt Pan and the Sandwich Cookie Cake Pan (more on this one later) - as I figured these would take the longest to filter out to eBay and Amazon and I'd have to wait a while to get hold of them.

Anyway, on Saturday I was having a bit of a bake-a-thon and decided to christen the new pan and used the maple syrup recipe that comes with the pan (courtesy of the Williams-Sonoma Kitchen):

FOR THE CAKE:
345g Plain Flour
1 3/4 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Grated Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
125ml Milk (I used semi-skimmed)
260ml Maple Syrup
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
250g Unsalted Butter
220g Firmly Packed Light Brown Sugar
125g Granulated White Sugar
4 Free Range Eggs

FOR THE GLAZE:
75g Firmly Packed Light Brown Sugar
115ml Maple Syrup
4 tsp Bourbon

METHOD:
Have all the ingredients at room temperature. Preheat your oven to 165C and brush the inside of your Bundt tin with shortening or butter (I use Wilton's Bake Easy Spray, available in the UK from Amazon).

Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger together and set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, maple syrup and vanilla and set aside.

With an electric mixer (I use a Kenwood Chef with K-Beater attachment), beat the butter on a medium speed until creamy, light and smooth (about 1-2 minutes). Add the brown sugar and granulated white sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy (about 4-5 mins). Scrape down the sides, and with the mixer still on add the eggs, one at a time.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk mixture and beginning and ending with the flour. Beat each addition until just mixed in, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Spoon the cake batter in to your prepared tin, spreading the batter so the sides are higher than the centre. Bake until the cake starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted in to the centre comes out clean, approx 60-65 minutes. Put the cake tin on a wire rack and leave it with the cake in it to cool for about 10 minutes, then turn out on to the rack and leave to cool completely.

Now at this stage, the recipe instructs you to make the glaze, but I have to admit I didn't bother, but if you want to... in a small saucepan over a medium-high heat, stir together the brown sugar, maple syrup and bourbon and simmer until the mixture has reduced slightly and is a bit tacky, should be about 3-5 minutes, then remove from the heat. While the cake is still cooling, put a but of baking or waxed paper under the cake, and use a pastry brush to apply over the warm cake.

I wrapped the cake up well in silver foil and bought in to work yesterday (so four days old by this stage) and we all had a generous slice, and it wasn't dry at all, and a really great flavour - the maple syrup or sweetness wasn't overpowering, and the spices gave a really nice depth to the flavour. As I said, I left the glaze off, and the cake was wonderfully moist, but maybe next time I'll use it as I'd be interested to see what effect the bourbon would have on the taste, and it would give a really nice sheen and help highlight the decoration.

Definitely a keeper!

1 comment:

  1. I just wanted you to know that you can buy NordicWare pans directly from the company. I have purchased them from Williams-Sonoma and also directly from the company on line. The site I have used is buynordicware.com. Sorry you can't order from W-S they are a great store with great products. I also have this pan and love it.

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