that’s the way the cake crumbles
Day 3 of our Week of Lemonosity, and even after 3 pitchers of lemonade, a repeat of the awesome Greek Lemon Chicken dish, and sharing a few lemons, we still have a full bag of citrus. How else can I share these without handing out overripe lemons? Dessert!! Everyone (but me) loves dessert, so I figured it would be nice to share my sour wealth with our friends and family. I don’t make them often, so I’m very subconscious about the quality of my desserts. For now, I stick with very simple recipes to make sure I can at least complete all the steps. That way, even though I’ve never made the dish before, it should basically come out the way it’s supposed to.
I found a recipe on the Pampered Chef website for a Lemon Cherry Crumble Cake that you can microwave!! Since we only had a few weeks at most of actual winter weather, it was an added bonus not to need our oven on an already 80+ degree day. The can of cherry filling was twice the size I needed so I bought two packages of cake mix from the store – the yellow mix that it called for, and strawberry just to try something different. I actually wanted strawberry filling because I prefer them to cherries, but I didn’t have many choices at Fresh and Easy. I will admit that I was incredibly nervous to put a whole cup of sour cream into a cake, but there was plenty of sweetness with all the ingredients combined. I actually followed the recipe exactly, and the only thing was that I had to go about 2 extra minutes in the microwave to cook it all the way through (but my Deep Covered Baker was wet when I started, so that may have made a difference).
I’m not good at figuring out whether or not my desserts turn out ok, so I divided up the crumble cakes and gave some to the babysitter who owns the lemon tree, the grandmother who graciously watches Ryley for free, the coaches at my new gym whom I need to impress, the boyfriend who I try to convince to pay my bills, and the managers at my restaurant whom I want to bribe for good schedules. Did I cover my bases? Haha, and I didn’t even have to consume any calories after making such a great cake! I always tell everyone that they don’t have to like what I share, but they DO have to tell me why so I can learn from it for next time. Luckily, everybody really liked this one, so I can wipe my brow with relief and do the champion dance. In fact, I even took a few bites of each…
First off, I bought the wrong size cake mix boxes. Who knew there was more than one size! That’s how often I am in the dessert aisle; I didn’t even know there were more than 2 flavors of cake, haha. Then I didn’t actually have quite enough cherry filling to make two full cakes, so I had to scrimp a little and spread it a little thin. My microwave must be old, because I also had to go an extra minute to start browning the crumble part. Using every last bit of cake batter was easy, though, because the Master Scraper (or Mix ‘N Scraper the second time) literally squeegees the Classic Batter Bowl clean. I put slightly less sour cream in the strawberry version, since I had just discovered (yes, AFTER making the first one) the size discrepancy. Even with pulling a few Heathers, everyone said the cakes were very tasty. Ahhh, the sweet taste of success!
Lemon-Cherry Crumble Cake
1/2 cup (125 mL) sliced almonds
1 pkg (18.25 oz or 510 g) yellow cake mix, divided
1/2 cup (125 mL) butter (1 stick), melted and divided
1 container (8 oz or 250 mL) sour cream
1 can (12 oz) cherry cake and pastry filling (see Cook’s Tips)
Vanilla ice cream (optional)
For crumb topping, coarsely chop almonds using Food Chopper. Combine almonds, 1 cup (250 mL) of the cake mix and 3 tbsp (45 mL) of the butter in Deep Covered Baker; mix until moistened. Microwave, uncovered, on HIGH 2–4 minutes or until beginning to brown, stirring once every minute. Spread crumb topping over Parchment Paper to cool. Wipe out any remaining crumbs from baker.
Zest lemon using Microplane® Adjustable Fine Grater to measure 1 tbsp (15 mL). Juice lemon using Juicer to measure 1/4 cup (50 mL). Combine remaining cake mix, zest, juice, sour cream, egg and remaining 5 tbsp (75 mL) butter in Classic Batter Bowl; mix until smooth. Pour cake batter into baker, spreading to edges. Using Small Scoop, scoop pastry filling evenly over batter. Microwave, covered, on HIGH 8–10 minutes or until center of cake springs back when lightly pressed.
Carefully remove baker from microwave using Silicone Oven Mitts. Sprinkle crumb topping over cake; let stand, uncovered, 5 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream, if desired.
Yield: 8 servings
Nutrients per serving: Calories 570, Total Fat 28 g, Saturated Fat 12 g, Cholesterol 70 mg, Sodium 570 mg, Carbohydrate 75 g, Fiber 2 g, Protein 6 g
Cook’s Tips: Cake and pastry filling is sold in jars and is formulated not to spread when baked. For a substitute for the cake and pastry filling, combine 1 cup (250 mL) cherry jam or preserves and 2 tbsp (30 mL) cornstarch in Small Batter Bowl; mix until cornstarch is dissolved. Proceed as recipe directs.
Any flavor cake and pastry filling, jam or preserves can be substituted for the cherry cake and pastry filling.
For best results, use a microwave with a built-in turntable.
copyright 2013 The Pampered Chef used under license