Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Does this cake pan appear to be levitating? Does it appear somewhat mysterious? A bit terrifying, even? Well, maybe not to you, but to me bundt pans have always been frightening.

You measure, you melt, you separate, you whip, you blend, you stir, you pour, you time, you are transported by heavenly aromas, and then, the moment of truth arrives and the whole damn cake, or more likely, just the bottom-soon-to-be-top of the cake is stuck in the pan. Not that I can remember that happening, exactly, but it just seemed logical that failure would be more common than success with this culinary tool.Or maybe I was thinking of jello molds.

In any case, because of these crazy notions held for so many years, this Hanukkah was the occasion of two firsts: my first bundt cake, and my first marble cake. Forget the miracle of the eight days of oil, it's a miracle I survived the stress of cake night.
The folks at Sofella had sent me a package of chocolate cake mix and a package of all-purpose baking mix, which just screamed marble cake to me. My niece recently began following a vegan diet, so our version would be vegan and gluten-free. The Sofella website has tons of recipes, and I easily found one for a vanilla cake. I used EnRG egg replacer and almond milk for cow's milk. I used a nonstick (but not teflon, just one of those slickly painted ones) bundt pan and sprayed it liberally with Trader Joe's Canola Oil Cooking Spray.

Oh, and if, like me that day (I've since moved on to sophomore status--yay!), you've never made a marble cake, there are many videos on youtube to guide you through the embarrassingly simple process. (I think bundt cake fear has its legitimate points, but marble cake? Why hadn't I ever made one? It's such a snap!) The main point, repeated ad infinitum on each video is to not overmix. If you become overly enthusiastic in that department you will probably end up not with a marble cake but with a taupe cake, or tan cake, or toast-colored cake. Definitely not the goal.

The rest of the story is short. Cake came out of pan without a hitch. Put plate on top of pan. Flipped pan. Cake on plate. Really! Dusted confectioners sugar on cake. Presented to admiring family and friends.
Excuse poor lighting and odd placement of cake slice on cake. (Beautiful marbling, though, isn't it!) Family and friends emit suitable oohs and aahs. Yours will, too! Follow instructions on the Sofella chocolate cake box. Here's the recipe for the yellow cake.

I don't ordinarily use mixes, but on a day when two kinds of latkes, roasted carrots, fennel salad and assorted appetizers had me tied up for some time, these cake mixes were just what I needed. And even the family member who notoriously eats like a bird had two slices!
I may just keep a couple of these boxes in the cupboard for other busy days. Excellent products: delicious, convenient and gluten-free, even vegan if you'd like them to be! Perfect!


FleaBabe said...

i always thought that a bundt pan would make a nice lighting fixture if you ran a wire and a bulb thru the center.....for time when the baking just isn't going right.

G.F.Veg said...

i was ready to grab some electrical wire and do just that if this hadn't worked!

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Looks delish, Bernice! I always suspend my cake in its Bundt pan on a full (closed) bottle of wine for 10 minutes and then remove it. Works well. :-)


G.F.Veg said...

great idea, shirley--now i won't have to resort to any electrical wiring in the future!