This month's Cake Slice Bakers cake selection comes from The European Cake Cookbook by Tatyana Nesteruk.
I chose the Caramel Honey Cake because the photo of this six-layer cake looks challenging and I love caramel!
There were challenges to overcome - definitely. The recipe calls for pecans in the cake as well as on the outside of the cake as decoration. I left those out because Bret can't have pecans and also knowing it has almond flour in it, I didn't want the pecans to give the cake an even more coarse texture.
The main challenge, though, is the six layers. My cakes didn't seem thick enough after baked to cut horizontally in half, so I left the cake at three layers.
Now the frosting is another matter! This buttery frosting has a can of dulce de leche (thick, thick caramel) which gives it a wonderful caramel flavor. The silkiness of the frosting along with that deep caramel flavor is outstanding.
I had to slap Bret's little fingers a few times when he kept dipping them into the frosting bowl. I really think the frosting is the highlight of this cake.
To me, this Caramel Honey Cake is like a cornmeal-like textured pound cake, which is actually better than it sounds. With the almond flour, I was kind of expecting that texture, but I was wishing it was a smoother and tighter crumb.
I would definitely make the frosting again! It will be great on cupcakes or a deep chocolate cake.
Although the cake sponge flavor is good, I probably won't make it again just because I prefer a softer cake. That's entirely subjective and many people prefer it. If you'd like a little bit of a challenge, make this cake and see what you think. Believe me, we'll be forking it up to the last crumb.
- For The Cake
- 9 large eggs
- ¾ C sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ C honey
- 2 C all-purpose flour
- 1 C almond flour
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- For Soaking Syrup
- ½ C sweetened condensed milk
- ½ C heavy cream
- For The Frosting
- 2 C butter
- 1 can dulce de leche
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 C powdered sugar
- For The Drizzle
- 4 squares Ghirardelli Bittersweet Baking Chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray three 8-pinch round cake pans with cooking spray, then line each with parchment paper.
- To prepare the cake: In a stand mixing bowl, add the eggs, sugar and vanilla with the whisk attachment and whisk on high for 5 minutes, until voluminous and pale in color. Pour in the honey and whisk again for 1 minute.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, almond flour, and baking powder. Remove the bowl from the stand and with a sifter, sift in the dry ingredients into the egg mixture about ⅓ cup at a time. After each addition, fold the flour into the eggs, thoroughly combining between each addition.
- Divide the cake batter evenly among the three pans and bang the pans gently on the counter to release bubbles. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-26 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and set. Remove pans from the oven and run a sharp knife gently around the edges. Remove the cakes, peel off the parchment paper, and cool on a rack until completely cooled.
- While the cakes are cooling, combine the sweetened condensed milk and heavy cream in a small bowl and set aside.
- For the frosting: whisk the softened butter in a large stand mixing bowl for 3 to 4 minutes until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the dulce de leche and vanilla and mix again for a few minutes until completely combined, scraping as needed. Add the powdered sugar about ½ cup at a time, mixing thoroughly until fluffy.
- If the cakes are thick enough (about 1"), take a serrated knife and slice each cake evenly horizontally. To assemble the cake, put the first layer on a cake stand. Take a pastry brush and generously brush the syrup onto the layer, then put a generous amount of frosting on the layer and smooth evenly. Repeat with each layer, then complete by frosting the tops and sides of the cake.
- Melt the chocolate in the microwave for 30 seconds, stir, then in 10 second increments until smooth. Put the melted chocolate into a baggie, snip the corner and drizzle the chocolate across the top of the cake (or drizzle with a spoon. Refrigerate the cake unless you're serving it immediately. Let the cake come to room temperature for 30-45 minutes before serving if refrigerated.
Tips and Stuff:
This cake is supposed to be 6 thin layers, but I made mine 3 layers because they were thinner that I thought they should be and was afraid they'd just fall apart. If you use 6 layers, be a little more frugal with the frosting.
The original recipe has 1 cup of chopped pecans stirred into the cake batter. Use that if you wish, but I think it would make the texture rougher.
The recipe calls for unsalted butter, but I used salted butter and left out the called-for salt.
The garnish is up to you - I used chocolate drizzle, but the original used chopped pecans pressed into the sides as well as some wafer cookies stuck on top. Whatever you think will look pretty.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 799Total Fat: 48gSaturated Fat: 26gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 242mgSodium: 428mgCarbohydrates: 84gFiber: 3gSugar: 61gProtein: 11g
Nutrition Values are Approximate