Wednesday, December 1, 2010

candy cane cake

Debbie's Candy Cane Cake

Happy December!  Some of us are being dusted with the first snow in these parts.  The first snows are nice as well as those that fall around Christmastime, but after that - forget about it.  Since I have time to experiment these days, today I will share a recipe from my dear friend, Debbie.  The photo just caught my eye and depicts a festive feeling just looking at it.  I highlighted all the ingredients you will need.  As a novice baker, I will be taking a trip to Wilton's, down the street, for some of these baking supplies.


This recipe calls for 1 red velvet cake mix and 1 white cake mix, made separately.  Prepare cake mixes according to box directions so you will need eggs, oil (or apple sauce) and water.  Add 1 tablespoon peppermint extract to the white cake mix.  Divide the two batters into 4 9-inch round pans.  When you assemble the cake together, alternate the layers with a cream cheese filling.  The outer cake is frosted with buttercream and sprinkled with crushed candy canes on top.

Cream Cheese Filling

You can purchase cream cheese frosting but here is a recipe for homemade.  Take 1 block of cream cheese (softened) and mix with 3/4 cup powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon pepperment extract and a little bit of milk.  The mixture should be somewhat thick but still spreadable.  If it seems to be too thin, keep adding powdered sugar.

Tip:  When alternating the layers, use an icing bag and put a band of icing around the inside edge of the first layer, then fill in with the cream cheese filling.  The icing band prevents the filling from running out before you frost the cake.  Put the next layer on top with another edge of icing and filling, etc. Ration your filling out into thirds as you go.  One third for each layer.  

Buttercream Frosting

In a mixing bowl, combine 1 stick softened margarine with 1 tablespoon vanilla extract.  Add 1 tablespoon Crisco oil.  Mix until smooth and creamy.  Add in 2 cups of powdered sugar.  Mixture will be sort of crumbly.  Mix in the another 2 cups of powdered sugar along with a small amount of milk.  Mix until smooth and creamy. If too thick, add a few more drops of milk. If too thin, keep adding powdered sugar until mixture is creamy.  You may also add flavorings or food coloring.  Just remember the more liquid you add, the more sugar you will need to add. 

Tip:  Before frosting the cake, it is best to refrigerate it for an hour after you put the layers together.  A cold cake is much easier to frost. 

To crush the candy canes, place them in a zip lock bag and wrap the bag in a kitchen towel and crush with a hammer.

Try not to be tempted to eat all the candy canes ahead of time, like my Aunt Diane. LOL. 

Have fun making this pretty dessert.  Methinks it would be a perfect project to prepare with a few friends.  Plan a get together and have each person make a separate portion (one prepares the cakes, another the filling and another the frosting), then combine all your creations together for the final layering and frosting.   Good times.  xo