|Okay, maybe it's not so pretty, but at least it didn't split!|
Okay I have said it before and I will say it again. Following Dionne with a recipe is a bit intimidating. However I actually made this one up and I’m going share it, and no that is not a typo in the title this is a cake made in a crock pot.
It’s good, really.
You see traditional cakes and I have a sort love/hate relationship. I love to eat them, they hate it when I try to bake them. I know this because they don’t come out looking well. They taste good, I mean it’s a box cake the taste is kind of locked in. The problem is that they split on me. Every. Darn. Time.
Don’t give me suggestions please I’ve tried them. Making sure they’re baked enough, adding pudding to the cake mix, using sour cream instead of oil, or making sure they cool enough before frosting them. I’ve refrigerated them overnight and they still split!
Sorry, I’m a little bitter about this.
I usually try to make up for it by making a killer frosting. I’m really good at frosting for some reason. I have a caramel frosting that would knock your socks off. Of course you’d have to overlook the ugly cake which is falling apart.
Like I said, traditional cakes hate me.
Anyway after getting my crock pot, and seeing as you can only make stew and chili for so long before you want to try something new, I did some internet searches and found that you could make desserts in a crockpot. Even a cake.
|See, it's a cake inside. Really!|
It’s not as weird as it sounds. Basically it’s a steamed cake, an Asian technique, which I always thought would be an interesting thing to try. Don’t ask me why, the reason certain things interest me is a mystery that God has yet to reveal.
Anyway the first cake I made in a crock pot was a pineapple upside down cake. I had to tweak the recipe (of course) because it was for a larger slow cooker. Aren’t they always? Basically what I found is that if I stick with a one layer cake mix, I use a brand called Jiffy, it’s the right size for a two quart crockpot. Anyway, it turned out really well, but it gave me an idea for a cake I wanted to make with a caramel topping. I decided to spice it up a bit by using almond extract in the cake. Why? Because I like almond, is there a better reason?
Well I made several versions, all edible but not what my imagination had in mind.
Then those dreaded words came into my head.
“I wonder what would happen if I…”
Oh how my mother used to cringe when those words came out my mouth.
Anyway here’s the end of the sentence, “…put applesauce into the batter?”
Now hear me out. Crockpot cakes will have a denser texture than a baked cake. The problem I ran into was the cake could dry out from the long cooking time (they take about two and half hours on the high setting). By adding applesauce instead of water (you measure apple sauce like a liquid not a solid anyway) it was still dense, but it was moister. Then I got the idea to add a couple of tablespoons of applesauce to the caramel topping as well. Applesauce is also a substitute for butter. Also for sugar too but not in this cake. I found this gave the caramel a gooey texture (in a good way) and it stayed that way even when the cake cooled off.
So it turned out the answer to my cake dilemma was applesauce!
Well at least for the crock pot cake, baked cakes…maybe I should just make sheet cakes.
Anyway here’s the recipe, hope you like it:
Caramel Apple Almond Crockpot Cake
1 box Jiffy yellow cake mix
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1teaspoon almond extract
4 Tablespoons butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons of molasses (or you can use 3/4 cup of packed brown sugar instead of sugar and molasses I just like to make my own brown sugar)
2 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
1 1/2 Tablespoons slivered almonds
Melt butter in saucepan over low heat, add sugar, molasses and applesauce. Mix on low heat until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.
Mix Jiffy cake mix with egg, applesauce and almond extract following instructions on box.
Grease a piece of aluminum foil with butter or non-stick spray and smoother inside of crockpot.
Pour in caramel mixture then pour in cake batter.
Cover and cook on high heat for approximately 2 1/2 hours. Cake is done when toothpick comes out clean. Hint: You’ll want to turn the crock every so often depending on how your heating element works for even cooking.
Toast slivered almond in 350 degree oven for approximately 10 minutes until lightly browned.
When cake is done turn off the cock pot and let sit for approximately 15 minutes.
Using a plate put over top of the crock pot and turn over so cake falls into plate.
Carefully remove the foil (it’s going to be hot!)
Eat cake either warm or cold, it’s good either way, and you can freeze it if you want!
Mystery writer C.L. Ragsdale is the author of The Reboot Files a Christian Cozy Mystery Series, and a superhero story called Chasing Lady Midnight. A California native, she loves to "surf" the web to research plot details for her fun, quirky stories. She has a degree in Theatre Arts which greatly influenced her writing style. Working in various fields as a secretary has allowed her to both master her writing skills and acquire valuable technical knowledge which she uses liberally in her plots. Although that is where she got her idea for The Secretary, she is not an evil mastermind. Although some of her former employers might disagree. These days she contents herself with knitting while contemplating her next diabolical plot. Story plot that is.
THE REBOOT FILES: The Mystery of Hurtleberry House, The Island of Living Trees, The Harbinger of Retribution, and The Wrong Ghost.