Monday, March 22, 2021

rum-cake experiment

I might be trying this as early as tonight:  rum cake.  Our family has an old, traditional rum-cake recipe that dates back to the 1970s.  It's a classic yellow-vanilla Bundt cake that evokes suburbia and 70s-era housewives with their Tupperware and Jell-O molds, but it proved to be a consistent hit through the 80s, the 90s, and the early Aughts.  My brother David is now the holder of the original recipe, and he's made plenty of his own rum cakes since Mom's passing, so I'm going to strike out on my own and create a new, heretical tradition that relies on a totally different recipe—one based on the super-moist chocolate cake I'd made a couple times a short while back.  Assuming I do work on this tonight, expect photos soon.


Charles said...

I somehow missed your original cake post--although that was nearing the end of last semester and I think I was very busy at the time. Good luck with the new experiment.

Oh, and one trick I learned for getting cakes to bake evenly is to take an old towel that you don't really need, soak it in cold water (and wring it out so it isn't dripping, but still wet), and then wrap it around the outside of the pan, fastening with a safety pin or whatever (something that won't melt, at any rate). The reason that you get humps in the first place is because the outside of the cake bakes first as the pan gets hot, leaving only the center to rise. The wet towel cools down the pan edges and allows the cake to bake more evenly.

I've tried this before and it really does work. In the interest of full disclosure, though, I will also say that I am lazy so I usually just skip it. Most of the time I leave the hump as is, because who really cares, but if I want a flat cake for whatever reason, then the hump is just a bonus for the baker.

Kevin Kim said...

My oven heats unevenly with the top burners, but I think the bottom burners are okay. Still, that sounds like a nifty trick. I'll keep it in mind.