Today's column features two cake recipes shared by readers.
Donna Wiwchar had requested a recipe for an apple caramel coffee cake with apple pieces throughout, drizzled with caramel and baked in a rectangular pan. Thanks to Joan Airey of Rivers for sharing a recipe she found online that she thinks might be similar but is baked in a Bundt pan. She writes that it is delicious and that she has made it several times and her guests have asked for the recipe.
Also featured today is a recipe for a beet and carrot cake courtesy of Jan Winnik, who writes that it is a fabulous recipe and popular with the members of the East Kildonan Garden Club always on the lookout for ways to use their plentiful garden produce.
New requests from readers:
Carolina Stecher would like to get the specific recipes for the hummus and crackers from Luxalune on Osborne. She writes that the hummus is buttery, served with red peppers and olives, and the crackers for scooping are cut in long strips that are crispy, flaky and rich tasting.
Doris Ames writes that she is fond of the chicken strips served hot from the Safeway deli and would like the recipe for them. She would also appreciate a tasty recipe for chicken strips that are baked in the oven.
Joanne Riddell has misplaced a story that she says was in this newspaper a couple of years ago about a mother and her two small daughters making whipped shortbread. She asks if anyone else may have clipped this particular recipe.
Helen Byers has misplaced a recipe that was published in the Free Press some years ago for a 23 x 33 cm (9 x 13-inch) licorice all-sorts slice and hopes someone else might have it. She has tried one she found online, but says it is not as good as the one that was in the paper.
Lastly, Florence Bouchard is looking for a recipe for cake tarts that uses tart shells, cake batter and a jam or mince filling.
If you can help with a recipe request, have your own request, or a favourite recipe you'd like to share, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, fax it to 697-7412, or write to Recipe Swap, c/o Darlene Henderson, Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6. Please include your first and last name, address and telephone number.
Apple cake with caramel glaze
500 ml (2 cups) flour
5 ml (1 tsp) baking soda
5 ml (1 tsp) salt
10 ml (2 tsp) spice mix*
10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract
250 ml (1 cup) sugar
250 ml (1 cup) canola oil
750 ml (3 cups) finely sliced peeled and cored apples
175 ml (3/4 cup) raisins
125 ml (1/2 cup) brown sugar
60 ml (1/4 cup) salted butter
5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla
60 ml (1/4 cup) heavy 35% cream
In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, and 10 ml (2 tsp) of spice mix. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together 3 eggs for about 1 minute. Add vanilla extract. Add sugar gradually, then canola oil in a slow steady stream. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and stir until just moistened. Fold in apples and raisins.
Transfer to a greased Bundt or tube pan and bake at 175 C (350 F) for about 50 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before removing from pan. Drizzle cold cake with caramel glaze.
Caramel glaze: Melt brown sugar and butter in a saucepan. Add vanilla and cream. Bring to a boil and simmer 1-2 minutes. Let cool to consistency of molasses before drizzling on the cake.
30 ml (6 tsp) ground cinnamon
12 ml (2 1/2 tsp) ground ginger
15 ml (3 tsp) ground coriander
5 ml (1 tsp) ground nutmeg
5 ml (1 tsp) ground allspice
Combine and store in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Can also use as an apple or pumpkin pie spice, or for hot cross buns.
Taste Tester Notes: This delicious cake is well spiced and moist with lots of apple while the drizzle of rich, caramel glaze tops it off nicely. It is even better the next day, as the fruit makes it moister and the flavours meld. I used Granny Smith apples.
Beet and carrot cake
175 ml (3/4 cup) oil
375 ml (1 1/2 cups) granulated sugar
3 eggs, separated
5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla
45 ml (3 tbsp) hot water
500 ml (2 cups) all purpose flour
15 ml (3 tsp) baking powder
1 ml (1/4 tsp) salt
5 ml (1 tsp) cinnamon
250 ml (1 cup) carrots, finely grated
250 ml (1 cup) beets, finely grated
125 ml (1/2 cup) walnuts, chopped
Cream cheese frosting
250 g pkg cream cheese, softened
10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla
250 ml (1 cup) icing sugar
Combine oil, sugar, egg yolks (whites to be stiffly beaten and added later), vanilla and hot water. Beat well. Sift all dry ingredients together. Beat into first mixture. Add carrots, beets and nuts. Beat well.
Fold stiffly beaten egg whites into batter. Place in a greased 23 x 33 cm (9 x 13-inch) pan. Bake in preheated 175 C (350 F) oven for approximately 50 minutes or until cake tests done. Cake changes colour during baking. Cool and frost.
Frosting: In medium bowl, beat cream cheese with vanilla at medium speed for 30 seconds. Add icing sugar and beat 1 - 1 1/2 minutes or until smooth and creamy.
Taste Tester Notes: A great combination for a moist and tasty cake. The beets lend an interesting, earthy flavour but are not overpowering. The batter will be quite burgundy-coloured throughout when you put it into the pan, but while baking the cake will turn to a golden colour with flecks of burgundy. The creamy, not-too-sweet frosting pairs perfectly with it. Baking time will depend on the type of pan you use and your oven. Check before suggested baking time to ensure it does not get overdone and dry (mine was ready in just over 40 minutes). Cake should spring to the touch and a toothpick come out clean when inserted in the middle.