Modern Baker Challenge





    Those four words describe this little cake to a T! It was liking eating a not-so-sweet fudge.And while the picture has whipped cream it definitely didn’t need it. But the cake is not photogenic on its own. And it wasn’t very cinnamony even though I added more than 1/2 of what was called for.

    I made 1/2 of the recipe which fit well into a 5″ springform pan. A 1/6th wedge is more than enough to satisfy both your chocolate craving and your sweet tooth.

    Recipe is on page 257 of Malgieri’s the Modern Baker. I also found it on Bon Appetit Hon. We are doing cakes through the end of the year. And now it’s December. Fortunately there are 5 Mondays in December. I might just get four more made!!!

    Check out the MB Challenge on the website.


On June 6, 1944, my Dad was flying over Europe as a navigator-bombadier in a B-26, commonly known as the Widow Maker. He was a 21 year old First Lt. He was part of D-Day!

He was proud of his country, proud to fight for it. And almost died for it. After the war was over he said the rest of his life was pure gravy since he had survived WWII. In 1953 he was flying over Korea as a navigator-bombadier in a B-25. He volunteered for Viet Nam but was sent to Germany instead. Sunday was his 89th Birthday. I made him cupcakes.

Not just any cupcakes – Malgieri’s Golden Cupcakes on page 261 of the Modern Baker made with 6 – yes SIX – large egg yolks. They were beautifully yellow and very rich.

He liked them. He blew out the candle, smiled a lot. And then Tuesday afternoon he went to the ER with pneumonia and he is not able to swallow.

We are waiting. Waiting to see if he will survive something worse than a war. Old Age and pneumonia.

But there is no doubt in my mind he will win this battle, too. After all, he is a member of The Greatest Generation!!

Cupcakes are from Malgieri’s the Modern Baker on page 261.

Back in the 80s a favorite cake was a bundt cake called ‘Sock it me Cake’. It was a yellow cake with a nutty cinnamon swirl running through it. When I read the recipe for Nick’s Sour Cream Coffee Cake it reminded me a lot of that cake.

A slightly sweet yellow cake with a cinnamon, brown sugar, nut swirl. Or at least that was Nick’s ingredients. I decided to clear out my collection of streusel, swirl, and cake toppings. So my swirl had Nick’s ingredients plus cardamom, chocolate chips, nutmeg, and granulated sugar. I liked the cardamom and nutmeg in the swirl. I still have of the collection left. Maybe with some muffins?

The recipe can be found on page 232 of Malgieri’s the Modern Baker

And if you would like to bake along with this last section – Cakes – just visit the MB Challenge Website

If I had to only have one dessert ever again it would be cheesecake. It is what I get out most often as not if they have it. Any kind of cheesecake. Any flavor is fine. Just as long as it’s cheesecake. So, when I needed to pick a cake to ‘host’ for Modern Baker Challenge I chose the……

    and I am glad I did.

They are adaptable to just about any flavor. You don’t feel bad about eating a whole one (especially if you make them sugar-free) and there is plenty of room in the fridge to store them easily. I made these back in August but completely failed to take enough pictures for ‘hosting’ so I was FORCED to go back and make them again. Yes, twist my arm!! The full recipe will yield 8 – 10 individual cheesecakes depending on the size of your ramekins. Mine were 3″ and 1/2 of the recipe resulted in 3 nice sized cheesecakes.

Nick’s cheesecakes are super easy with only 5 ingredients

    super quick as well.

Cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla are mixed up first. Then the eggs go in one at a time. Add the sour cream and you are done!

Just spoon the batter into the molds and bake about 25 minutes.

Easy!! Quick!! Delicious.

Malgieri suggested serving them with berries so the first time I made them I served them with a blueberry coulis,

but this time I drizzled them with caramel sauce.

I beat the batter more than Malgieri suggested and ended up with a lighter less dense cheesecake which we really enjoyed. And since I used Splenda instead of sugar I didn’t feel quite as guilty about eating A WHOLE CHEESECAKE after dinner.

You can find the recipe on page 264 of Nick Malgieri’s the Modern Baker. We are in the last section for this book, cakes, but there is still time to join in. Just visit The Modern Baker Challenge and bake along. We will finish the end of December. And then, well who knows!!!

THIS is not the first time I have made a devil’s food cake. I made one Dorie’s Devil’s Food Cake back in February 2009. Didn’t turn out well.

Then I made Nick’s Devil’s food Bombe from Bake! last June. Didn’t turn out too well.

Now, I have made….

    Devil’s Food Cake with Fluffy White Icing

…and it came out pretty well. The layers rose like they were supposed to (even with my old wonkey oven!) and the frosting was outstanding – SWEET – but outstanding.

All in all – pretty good cake!!

You can find Nick’s recipe for Devil’s Food Cake on page 253 of the Modern Baker

We are on the last section of the Modern Baker Challenge, but join in and bake along with us.

WHEW!! I didn’t think I would ever get back to Malgieri’s Modern Baker. With all the TWD Catch-ups There have been so many sweet treats in the house I knew we eh… I didn’t need any more. But those are almost all done now.

Anyway, I was scanning through another edition of Louisiana Cookin’ and ran across this recipe for Ooey Gooey Squares. It called for a yellow cake mix “gasp” and I don’t buy them anymore so I thought I would use Nick’s Yellow Cake Layers instead. Good Call!!

Ooey Gooey Squares {adapted from Louisiana Cookin’ October 2012}

    1 (18.2S-ounce) box yellow cake mix
    1/2 cup butter, melted
    1 large egg
    1 tablespoon water


    1 (8-ounce) package reduced-fat
    cream cheese
    1 (16-ounce) box confectioners’ sugar
    2 egg whites
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
    1 cup shreddeed coconut

Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, combine cake mix, butter, egg, and water. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour batter into well greased 13 x 9 pan. {I used Malgieri’s Yellow Cake Layers instead of the box mix.

In another large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, egg whites, and vanilla. Beat
at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir in chocolate morsels and coconut. Spread over batter in pan. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until top is golden brown. Let cool to room temperature, and cut into small squares.

The only problem I had with this ooey gooey yummy cakey treat is that all the gooey which started on top made its way to the bottom of the cake. Not that I am complaining. Now the first thing you taste is the Ooey Gooey rather than just cake.

The cake part was moist and sweet. Malgiei’s Yellow Cake Layers are on page 242 of his the Modern Baker. They are easy to put together and bake up so much better than your off the shelf mix.

BTW I only made 1/2 of the Ooey Gooey recipe so with the rest of the batter I made this….

which I frosted with Pumpkin Cream Cheese {from Faith at The Stirring Place}

    •16 oz cream cheese, softened
    •1/2 cup pureed pumpkin (you can also use 1/4 cup pumpkin for a thicker consistency.)
    •1/4 c brown sugar
    •1/8 c white sugar
    •1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
    •1/2 tsp vanilla

Beat all ingredients in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Adjust sugar to taste. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
We used this to fill some Pumpkin Snickerdoodles made during a recent TwitterBake.

Check out The Modern Baker Challenge Cake Section for more yuommy cakes.

Seems like ages since I did a Malgieri sweet. It’s not because I haven’t been baking. The computer was in the shop and ALL my pictures were on the computer. When Will I Learn??

I made these in July after picking some luscious blueberries from our bushes. And these crumb cakes definitely deserved good, juicy, sweet berries. This was a lovely yellow cake covered with berries and a crumb topping that is also delicious on ice cream. Or maybe ice cream ON the cake with MORE topping over that!! Or maybe JUST the topping!! But I digress….

I made only 1/3 of the entire recipe which resulted in 4 2″ by 3″ cakes. Each of us had our own treat!

The berries kept their definition but some of them ‘melted’ into the batter and provided a sweet layer just above the cake.

We loved these. Perfect for desert or snack or, shucks, Breakfast!! Definitely a repeat! Definitely!

You can find the recipe on page 237 of Malgieri’s the Modern Baker. This recipe is not online but several of Nick’s are. Just visit his Website.

Several members of The Challenge have made this already: Kayte, Phyl, Andrea, and Abby, and Chaya. And they all look delicious.

One good thing, among many, about visiting family and friends is that I have the chance to make a full-sized dessert rather than a mini. This was true for this past weekend when we visited family down south and I made Malgiere’s….

    Perfect Pound Cake

With a slight hint of lemon it is a perfect not-as-sweet cake that goes perfectly with a good cup of coffee (or tea).

I had just gone to the store and was absolutely positive I had everything I needed for this goodie until I searched for my lemon extract and found I had none. NONE!! Almond, yes. Orange, yes. Eggnog, yes. but no lemon. I was afraid I would dilute the batter too much with lemon juice so I used 3/4 tsp of lemon oil. It gave just a hint of lemon to the flavor. Next time I will use a full teaspoon. The cake was moist and light. Light because of the unique method of mixing the batter. Malgieri’s aunt, from whom the recipe originated seperated the eggs, beat the whites, folded them back into the batter and then beat the batter again. This resulted than a lighter pound cake than I am used to. Well worth the many bowls it took to put it together!! Thank you, Aunt Rachel!!

Nick’s Perfect Pound Cake is on page 226 of the Modern Baker

Today was TwitterBake Day. Actually it was a Rolling TwitterBake which means several of us baked the same thing, just not at the same town! Still a fun way to bake – with friends.

On the menu today….

      Rum Scented Marble Cake

And it was delicious. Moist. Tender. Light. I only made one mini-bundt from 1/2 of the recipe and it was just right!

The cake is a mix of yellow cake with a chocolate swirl both of which have the scent and slight taste of RUM!! And making a swirl in a cake is always fun!

A layer of plain batter with a layer of chocolate batter followed by a last later of plain. Swirl!! Fun to see what patterns result. I made this with Phyl and Kayte and all of our swirls are different!!

Come by The Modern Baker Challenge and join in the fun. SEVEN months of CAKE!!!

BTW – Kayte found the recipe HERE!!

It is Malgierei Monday. And since today is the First Monday in June it is also the first day of the last section of The Modern Baker ChallengeCAKES!!

I had to really think about which one to start with as there are 17 I really want to try out of the 25 total. Chocolate came to mind. But which one – there are 6 chocolate cakes to choose from. And then we were invited to a Crawfish Boil. Cupcakes would be sooo easy to eat so the choice was now easy.

      Incredibly Moist Chocolate Cupcakes

And they WERE – moist – and very delicious. They were very easy to put together and they did not last past the trip home!! I made only 1/2 the recipe and ended up with 19 cupcakes. Perfect number!! Only 18 made it to The Boil. I HAD to test one!!! PERFECTION!!

Malgieri suggests chocolate fudge icing. I made it but it never ‘set’ so I iced with a Peanut Butter Frosting and used the chocolate fudge as a drizzle. Chocolate and PB – Heaven!!

The frosting is from Two Peas and their Pod and was a filler for Oatmeal PB cookies. It was the perfect texture for frosting.

    3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
    1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
    3 tablespoons heavy cream

Combine the butter, peanut butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until smooth. Add the heavy cream and beat until light and fluffy.

Malgieri’s chocolate fudge is really good. But then, it IS Chocolate!! I am not sure what I did wrong so that it remained too soft to use as a frosting. But it does make a good drizzle.

If you want to join us just visit The Modern Baker Challenge Website – Cakes – And let Phyl – our fearless leader – know you want to Bake-along with us!

This cake is on page 263 of Malgieri’s the Modern

Cakes will be here thru’ the end of December. And then….. well, we are still working on THAT one!!

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