Thursday, November 17, 2011

Golden Vanilla Wacky Cake

Every time I take a trip to America, I treat myself to a couple of new cookbooks. Making the decision of which ones to buy always takes me a while and a lot of research. One of the new cookbooks I got was Piece of Cake! by Camilla V. Saulsbury, a book about one bowl, easy cakes. I discovered Miss Saulsbury when I was looking for recipes for homemade energy bars and stumbled on her blog Enlightened Cooking. Her name sounded familiar to me and so I searched on Amazon and sure enough, I saw she wrote a muffin cookbook, for which I had read a review on a blog I often read. I discovered that she had just published this cake cookbook and eagerly read all the reviews. In short, they were all glowing. So I pushed this book to the top of my wish list and when the time came, happily ordered it. It came with just enough time to read through it and put it to use for Rachael's Shabbat Sheva Brachot. It took a while to decide what to make first, because the cakes all sound delicious, but also because many, most I should say, are made with buttermilk or sour cream for which there is no parve substitution. (The other issue I have with this book is that her weight measurements are totally off an unreliable. There's no reason for them to be there.) Anyway, I decided to go with one of the original wacky cakes that were the inspiration for this book. A wacky cake is a cake that is usually mixed up in the pan that is baked in and is said to be a creation from the era of rationed foods. I have previously made Chocolate Wacky Cake, so I thought the vanilla version to be appropriate. The cake came together very fast and I popped it in the oven. I was quite nervous about how it would come out, but I really needn't have worried. I cut off a tiny corner and found it to be really moist, if a bit dense, full of vanilla flavor and redolent of a certain box mix, but homemade and better! (I will admit, I find this to be complimentary!) I frosted it with her recipe for cocoa icing, which was also delicious but top it as you wish.Vanilla cake is a blank canvas. I finished it with chocolate sprinkles, just for the sake of being festive. The cake was a big hit with the sister in whose honor I made it, and I even sent off all the leftovers with her and her new husband. Here's too many more cakes being baked from this wonderful cookbook!

Golden Vanilla Wacky Cake
from A Piece of Cake!

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk, I used soy
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp vanilla
1 tbsp white vinegar
Icing or frosting of your choice

Preheat your oven to 350. Grease an 8 inch metal cake pan. I used a pyrex pan and lowered the temperature a bit.
Place all of the dry ingredients in a bowl,
and whisk to combine.
Add the milk, oil and vanilla,
and stir just until blended. Add the vinegar, just until blended. Yes, watching the chemical reaction is fun!
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely.
Here's my cocoa icing.
Frost,
top with sprinkles and enjoy!

1 comment:

pragmaticattic said...

Wow, vanilla wacky cake that tastes like the boxed mix. This I have to try. I just made a pumpkin wacky cake that was very good.