Where did the month go? It seems like only yesterday was the beginning of March, and now it’s the 20th! My goodness. Anyways, you know what the 20th means, right? If you’re thinking cake, you’re absolutely right!
This month the Cake Slice Bakers chose to make the Honey Bee Cake found on page 36 of Vintage Cakes by Julie Richardson. I really encourage you to buy this book, or borrow it, or check it out from a library, either way get your hands on this book soon! I’m on my third year with this group and I have never been so pleased with a cookbook in my life! Every cake we have baked has turned out fantastic, including this one, despite my little missteps.
I mentioned last week how my weeks have been hectic and I haven’t had much time for baking. By the way, don’t worry about the lack of posts. I have a few recipes in the archives; I’m just trying to stretch them out so I can get some more goodies cracked out of the oven. So basically I had to crank this cake out soon because time was running out before I went on spring break.
I totally forgot how much butter this cake called for and I only had one stick in the fridge and the rest stored in the freezer, which I didn’t remember until I started getting all the ingredients out on the table. Well, I did was any other baker stressed for time does, I stuck a stick in the microwave and hit the defrost button. I was careful to stop every five to ten seconds to make sure my butter wasn’t melting, but I couldn’t stop it from becoming real gushy like. I was kind of worried about that, but I wasn’t going to waste that whole stick of butter, so I just hoped for the best. Then I reread the ingredient list and I needed an additional two tablespoons of butter, so I said screw it and left out the extra butter, since the half stick I saved was going to be for the honey brown sugar glaze.
Other than the little butter fiasco, everything turned out perfectly! The gushy butter wasn’t nearly as melted as I thought it was and the cake turned out beautifully! The glaze that goes on top created this soft and spongy texture. That little centimeter of gooey cake was definitely the best part of the cake I thought.
My roommate, P, doesn’t usually get excited about my baking adventures. She kind of just stares at me as I get excited about smells and textures. But with this cake she was totally into, even before it went into the oven. Then she went to go take a nap. When she woke up and came out of her room she kept asking when she was allowed to dig into the cake. To be completely honest, her excitement made me real happy.
By the way, I left the almonds out of this recipe because I’m not a real big fan of almonds, unless it’s in that Nature Valley sweet and salty almond granola bar, but that’s not relevant right now.
Honey Bee Cake
Adapted from Vintage Cakes by Julie Richardson
Makes one 9-inch round cake
2 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 ½ sticks (12 tbsp.) unsalted butter, room temperature
¾ cup sugar
1/3 cup honey
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 eggs + 1 egg yolk, room temperature
¾ cup buttermilk, room temperature
½ cup honey
¼ cup dark brown sugar
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, sugar, honey, and vanilla. Beat on low speed until blended. Increase the speed and beat for 5 to 7 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in the eggs and egg yolk one at a time, adding the next one once the previous egg has disappeared. Decrease the mixer seed to low and add the flour in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk in two additions, starting and ending with the flour. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl between each addition of flour.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the surface over with a rubber spatula. Rap the pan firmly on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles. Place the pan on the center rack and bake for 40 minutes or until the top starts to turn a light golden color.
While the cake is baking, make the glaze by placing the honey, brown sugar, and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir ingredients until melted and combined. Bring the mixture just barely to a simmer. Turn the heat off, but leave the pan on the burner to keep warm.
Remove the cake from the oven and poke holes all over the cake with a wooden skewer or toothpick. Pour the glaze over the cake and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
Cool the cake on a wire rack for about an hour before releasing from the pan. To remove the cake, turn the cake upside down onto a plate (not the serving plate), remove the parchment paper from the bottom, and flip the cake back over onto your serving plate. Serve warm.
This cake keeps for up to 5 days when wrapped up tightly and stored at room temperature.