This month with the Cake Slice Bakers, we baked up our second cake from Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott. This time around it was a Burnt Sugar Cake, which I thought just sounded amazing! I heard a lot about this icing being very sweet but I wanted to make it exactly how the recipe called it so I could test it out. My cake seemed to take a little longer than the directions called for so I think mine could have been a little more moist, but all in all I like the cake and I would definitely make it again. Perhaps as cupcakes or even a bundt cake with a lighter frosting or drizzle.
Burnt Sugar Cake from Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott
Burnt Sugar Syrup:
1 cup boiling water
1 cup sugar
Burnt Sugar Cake:
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar
Burnt Sugar Frosting:
3 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup Burnt Sugar Syrup
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 or 3 tablespoons evaporated milk or milk
To make the syrup: Heat the sugar in a cast iron skillet or in another heavy pan with broad bottom and high sides, over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar melts into a clear, brown caramel syrup about the color of tea. Carefully add the boiling water, pouring it down the sides of the pan so that if the syrup foams and bubbles up, you'll be protected. Continue cooking, stirring often, until the water joins the caramel in a brown syrup. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Store the cooled syrup in a sealed jar until needed.
make the cake: heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt, and stir with fork to mix well. Stir the vanilla into the milk.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and the sugar with a mixer at high speed for 2 to 3 mins, until they are very well combined, stopping now and then to scrape down the bowl. Add the eggs, one by one, beating well each time. Pour in 1/2 cup of the Burnt Sugar Syrup and beat well. Add about a third of the flour mixture, and then about half of the milk, beating at a low speed just long enough, after each addition, to make the flour or the milk disappear into the batter. Mix in another third of the flour, the rest of the milk, and then the last of the flour the same way.
Divide the batter between the cake pans and bake at 350 for 20 to 25 mins, until the cakes are golden brown. Let the cakes cool in the pans on wire racks for 15 minutes. Then turn out the cakes onto wire racks or plates to cool completely.
To make the frosting: In a large bowl, combine the confectioners sugar, the remaining 1/2 cup of burnt sugar syrup, the butter, and the vanilla. Beat with a mixer at medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl now and then to bring the ingredients together. Add 2 tablespoons of evaporated milk and continue to beat until the frosting is thick, soft, smooth, and easy to spread. Add a little more sugar if its thin and a little more evaporated milk if it seems too thick.
I wasnt a huge fan of this icing, its very sweet and I could never seem to get the perfect texture, it was either too funny or too thick. I think this cake would be better with either no frosting at all or a very light glaze!