Saturday, September 6, 2014

Testing, Testing: Wacky Cake & Sweet Tea and Lemonade Cake

I have tried out a couple of recipes over the past two weeks.  The first is a chocolate cake that uses no eggs or dairy.  You even mix it in the pan you are going to bake it in.  It has many names – crazy cake, wacky cake, depression cake.  I am calling it All the Eggs Were Sold cake.  Some weeks I am drowning in eggs and other weeks I sell them all and have none.  One of those weeks I needed to make a cake for Sunday dinner. 



I used this recipe for the cake.   I made a chocolate frosting with this recipe using almond milk.  I did add a bit of extra powdered sugar, but it thickened up just fine.  The cake was amazing.  It was really moist.  I will definitely make this again. 


The second cake does not have a picture.  It is the Sweet Tea and Lemonade cake featured in a recent issue of Southern Living.  If you follow the link, you will see that the cake received awful reviews.  Most people loved the frosting but not the cake.  I wanted to try it out so I made changes.  First I cannot believe that the full cake recipe fit in a 9x13 pan.  I baked a half recipe in a pan very close to 9x13.  This meant it baked in a reasonable amount of time.  I also adjusted the strength of the tea and added in plain yogurt.  Here is my version:


½ C boiling water

2 family size tea bags

½ C butter, softened

1 C granulated sugar

¼ C firmly packed light brown sugar

2 large eggs (I used 2 large eggs plus one bantam eggs)

1 ¾ C cake flour

1 t baking powder

Scant ½ t salt

1/8 t baking soda

½ C plain yogurt


Pour water over tea bags and let steep for 10 minutes.  Squeeze the tea bags to get all of the flavor out.  Allow the tea to cool completely.


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a 9x13 pan.  Mix butter and sugars until light and fluffy (5 minutes).  Add eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition.  Sift (or whisk) cake flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  Beat in 1/3 of the flour, then the tea, another 1/3 of the flour, then the yogurt, and the last of the flour.  Pour batter into prepared pan. 


Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick in center comes out clean.  Allow to cool completely and top with Lemonade Frosting.



The extra strength tea gave the cake more flavor.  The addition of the yogurt made the cake moist.  These two changes took care of the two complaints in the reviews.  Everyone who tried the cake made by the adjusted recipe loved it.  I will keep my recipe and certainly will make it again!

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