csb november: applesauce spice cake, or, yay!

20 Nov

Welcome to the kickoff cake to the 2013-2014 Cake Slice Bakers baking season, Interwebers. Excuse me while I pat myself on the back for not only getting this cake baked, but getting it baked and posted On. Time.


I believe this newfound sense of timely baking is definitely a foreshadowing of how the coming baking year will be. And in a word, that means it will be totallyphenomenalHFSdeliciousness.

Tell your friends.

We’re baking this year from Great Cakes by Carole Walter, which is quite possibly one of the most bizarre cookbooks I’ve ever encountered in that there are approximately five pictures total in the book. No page after page of luscious pictures of lovely cakes piled high with frothy whipped cream or some such enticing you to make baked good after baked good until your pants don’t fit.

cake book


Anyshoes, this month the winning vote went to the Applesauce Spice Cake with optional brown sugar glaze. I don’t know why one wouldn’t opt for said glaze as A) It’s not frosting, and thus very, very easy, and 2) It involves the trifecta of baking goodness: Brown sugar, butter, and heavy cream.

It should also be noted that this recipe uses shortening which I didn’t know still existed and which I don’t like to think about too hard because let’s face it: Shortening is more than a little odd. It’s shelf-stable and….slippery. I mean, Velveeta is shelf-stable, too, but at least that has a vague cheese flavor. And it’s not nearly as slippery.


It should also ALSO be noted that spice cake may just be my favorite kind of cake. And also also ALSO I went apple picking this fall and had all intention of using said apples in this recipe. Which I kind of did in the form of applesauce. (Though technically it was pear-applesauce.) But I totally had to buy a fresh apple for the grating/chopping (both directions were given, neither were clarified) (I went with grating) (which, have you ever grated an apple? Very juicy.) (also, also, also, ALSO because I was wary that chopped apples vs. grated apples wouldn’t meld nicely into the batter as it baked). Which is my way of saying I meant to make this cake earlier and then it got to be the night before our cake-posting day and well, here we are.

Instead of making a big huge bundt cake (does anyone else immediately think of the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding when they hear the word bundt? “Oh! It’s a caaaaake!”) I broke this one out into mini bundt pans. And instead of drizzling the glaze artistically over each bundt, I simply filled the center well of the minis with glaze. (Because on a scale of 1 to 10, how artistically do you really think I can drizzle glaze? I’ve got 2:1 on -12.) Warm and soft (but not mushy), the cakes had a lovely spice flavor, though I couldn’t really detect all that much apple flavor.


No matter. They were still delicious, and relatively easy to put together, minus the conundrum of whether to chop or grate the apple, and also—sorry to note this so late—directing bakers to beat in the sugar a tablespoon at a time over the course of three to four minutes.


But it works.

Spatulas up, Interwebers. The baking has begun.


16 Responses to “csb november: applesauce spice cake, or, yay!”

  1. EmilyC November 20, 2013 at 9:02 AM #

    Oh my, thoroughly enjoyed your post! Good idea with individual servings! I did not noticed the bit of ‘sugar a tablespoon at a time over the course of three to four minutes’ – for the glaze? no wonder my glaze did not come together nicely! Also because I did not use the full amount of sugar indicated.

  2. Paloma November 20, 2013 at 9:40 AM #

    LOL! You are too funny! You did great with your mini cakes… they look adorable! Shortening is shelf stable… just like oil… because it’s just that… fat! LOL! Glad you still enjoyed your cakes regardless of the lack of apple flavor… I don’t understand why Carole Walter would leave it to us to either grate or chop when they are two very different techniques with very different results… I am sure chopped apples give you more of an apple flavor… because you keep all the juice in and because you get a “bite” of apple… interesting! Great job baking on time too! 😀

  3. Sandra Garth November 20, 2013 at 2:45 PM #

    Oh my gosh there is a pool of glaze that I could just dive into! I’m also happy to know that I’m not the only one that wishes this book had more pictures.

  4. ImWhisper November 20, 2013 at 7:10 PM #

    I love the idea of filling the centers with the glaze – yummy and fun!!
    I read the directions as a teaspoon at a time for the sugar and I said oh heck no and just beat it in! lol!!


  5. theninjabaker November 20, 2013 at 9:17 PM #

    Ingenious, Molly! Wish I’d thought of apple-pear applesauce =) Thank you for the giggle about veg shortening =) Last and not least, wonderful idea to fill the wells of the mini bundts with that luscious caramely glaze.

  6. Anne@FromMySweetHeart November 21, 2013 at 12:26 AM #

    LOL….oh Molly….I LOVED this post! You nailed every aspect of the cake AND the book….with humor! It’s an odd book….with some odd techniques……and some odd flavors. This year will definitely be interesting. But I LOVE your baby bundts….especially filling the center wells with the glaze! You really made the best of this recipe! : )

  7. Anabel November 21, 2013 at 12:28 AM #

    I made this cake in the evening after work and we intended to have it for dessert. I tried adding the sugar in the time it mentioned but ran out of patience and rushed it! I too wondered why? Next time I make it I will try to follow the instructions…

  8. Maranda November 21, 2013 at 1:30 PM #

    oh I love the well of glaze in the center of your cake! Fabulous! I’ll be honest, the shortening turned me off from this cake. I didn’t have time to make it and I’m not sorry about it for pretty much that reason…and I’m not big on apples. Congrats on yours though!

  9. Diana Gale November 22, 2013 at 7:07 AM #

    I didn’t read the part about putting in the sugar spoon by spoon and chucked it all in at once. I am definitely going to be more conscientious about reading the recipe next time! I keep waiting for the glaze to flow over the rim. Too cute!

  10. Heather November 22, 2013 at 9:41 AM #

    The mini bundts are adorable. I would prefer more pictures too, but I think it will be a good book.

  11. Becca at Cookie Jar Treats November 22, 2013 at 11:47 AM #

    Congrats on getting everything done in time! These baby bundts really are adorable 🙂 Oh and just so you know: I would rather have a pool of delicious glaze that just a little line of it ANY day 😉

  12. Felice/All That's Left Are The Crumbs November 22, 2013 at 3:42 PM #

    Oh, how I have missed your posts and your wit. The book looks like an encyclopedia, and I suspect that given her credentials, Carole Walter is the professor of cakes. I guess the lack of photos is what happens when the book is from 2001 – it would not be published today, well not with 5 photos anyway ;). Love your cool little bundt with their pools of caramel.

  13. Kathia Castro November 22, 2013 at 4:37 PM #

    Your mini cakes are so cute, in the pictures they look bite size, so yummy. I am not too much into apple so the lack of apple flavor was ok with me.

  14. Hazel November 23, 2013 at 1:14 PM #

    heehehe! Now this I enjoyed reading… you are too funny! Shortening freaks the bejaysus out of me… it’s straight up out of the lader and super gross but hey, it works! However,,, tablespoon of sugar at a time… I’m a Mom/preschool teacher/baker/skater/wife/ocd cleaner mcpolish! Ain’t nobody got time for that!! 😉 Hazel x

  15. graceakaclouds November 25, 2013 at 2:29 AM #

    Haha I love your sense of humour 🙂 Well done for baking this on time 😉 Though I can’t say the same for myself. Honestly, I’m not a fan of the waxy shortening either – heard about some health no-no(s) on it. Anyhow, it’s a personal preference I feel to either use it or substitute it. Anyway, I must say I love your cute mini bundts with the frostings! Yay!! We will continue to have even more fun 😉


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