Saturday, November 20, 2010

Cinnamon Swirl Cake

I love how we stop to ponder all the blessings in life time to time and recognize what or who we are thankful for....especially at Thanksgiving. I am so thankful for my daughter's 3rd grade teacher and what better way to say thanks than with CAKE!
To be more exact---Cinnamon Swirl Cake with Apples and Almonds.
   I collect cake pans from Williams-Sonoma. They are my grown-up toys. Truthfully, I am obsessed with novelty and classic cake pans and love how easy it is to make just about any cake look fancy shmancy just by using any pretty shaped cake pan. Plus, with the right type of pan, you can just decorate with berries, nuts, fruits, etc. and skip frosting all together. I love frosting---okay, I think frosting is one of the best things known to the human race ever and I will lick a spoon of frosting in less than a second---sorta like those sci-fy movie scenes when a swarm of locusts attack a corn field and devour the whole field in one minute. That is how it is with me and frosting. HOWEVER, big HOWEVER, I do not always like frosting a cake. Plus, I think that when certain shaped cakes are left unfrosted and decorated instead with fruits, glazes or a once over with powdered sugar, they can look rather sophisticated and worthy of being the centerfold or front cover of Gourmet magazine .

Now back to the feelings of Thanksgiving, I feel truly blessed that my daughter has such a fantastic teacher. My daughter and I decided to make her a cake for her to enjoy over the Thanksgiving holiday. I wanted to make a cake that looked sorta Autumn-ish and had typical Fall flavors to it like Apples and Cinnamon. I am very pleased with how it turned out.

Here is what I did....
Follow the directions on the back of a Betty Crocker Decadent Supreme Cinnamon Swirl cake mix . Spray cake pan generously with non-stick baker's spray. Pour in the batter and bake according to package directions. When done, remove and let cool.
While cake is in oven, core and slice 3 gala apples. Keep skin on. It isn't necessary to skin the apples. Gala apples, in my opinion, have a thin skin which becomes really tender when boiled. Plus, I think the skin makes the apples look more farmish, rustic, homemade.
Place slices in a medium pot and fill with water about halfway to the top of apples. Also add some dashes of cinnamon and sugar and 2 tablespoons of butter. Boil the apples over low heat. Stir gently and avoid making the apples mushy. Allow water to reduce itself slowly. Once apples are tender, remove from heat and set aside.
Once cake is cool, place apples decoratively on cake and use sliced almonds and powdered sugar as a finishing touch!!! Easy Peezy Lemon Squeezy!

Happy Thanksgiving.

Sealed with a Kiss, Kirsten

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