So, I've decided to start baking more. I've hesitant to bake much for years, limiting myself to just flipping thru baking and decorating books and vicariously making alterations and imagining the perfect, awe-inspring results. The reality, I felt, would be much different. Exploding muffin tins, caved cheesecakes and gravity-oppressed souffles haunt my dreams.
I'm not exactly sure why I have this primal fear of desserts. Perhaps starting up now will reveal a repressed memory of a bananas foster gone wrong setting my pigtails a-flame as a child? Or maybe in another life I was flattened by a rogue 50 lbs bag of flour that leapt from a high shelf at the General Store? More likely it's a simple fear of failure... and the mess this will turn my kitchen into on a regular basis.
All of that being said, I'm excited to branch out into the baking world... and to be sharing it with all of you. Hopefully they're be lots of fun to be had, and probably a disaster or two to laugh about. I mean, seriously, look what I do when I just taking PICTURES of baked things.
I thought I'd start out with some baby steps here and explore a couple of recipes that almost require a cake mix. I say "require" because I've learned the hard way that adding things willy-nilly to pre-set cake recipes can get you into lots of trouble. Boxed cake mixes, besides being fool-proof, contain emulsifiers that allow you throw in additions without making much, if any, changes to the mix recipe.
Recipe: Blueberry Lemon Burst Bundt Cake
One box vanilla or white cake mix (you can also use lemon if you really want lemony cake!)
Whatever ingredients the cake mix calls for
1 cup of plain yogurt (you can also use blueberry yogurt to really up the blueberry flavor!)
1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries
1/2 cup water
The zest and juice of one lemon
1 teaspoon of turmeric (optional, for bright yellow color - don't worry, your cake won't taste like turmeric!)
Special equipment: 12 cup bundt pan, small sauce pan, hand blender or food processor
What to do with it all...
Preheat oven to temperature according to boxed mix for a bundt pan
Liberally grease your bundt pan
Add blueberries and water to a small saucepan to simmer for 5 mins, or until thawed (if using frozen) then allow to cool
Mix all cake mix ingredients according to directions, folding in the cup of yogurt, lemon juice and zest and optional turmeric
Puree your blueberries using a hand blender or food processor/stand blender
Pour puree into your cake batter, but do not stir
Pour batter into your bundt pan and bake according to box instructions (your cake may take a little longer because of the additions)
Remove after baking and allow to cool before inverting and removing
Glaze with a simple syrup, honey or simply dust with powdered sugar!