Monday, December 16, 2013

Rum Cake

Ingredients for the cake: 1/2 cups walnuts, crushed 1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened 3 T + 1/2 cup grapeseed or canola oil, separated 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour 1/4 cup cornstarch 4 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 cup vanilla instant pudding mix 4 large eggs 3/4 cup dark rum (recommended: Tortuga Rum) 1 T pure vanilla extract * * * * * * * Ingredients for the rum syrup: 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter 1/2 cup water 3/4 cup granulated white sugar 1 teaspoon Kosher salt 1/2 cup dark rum 10-15 cup Bundt pan Preparing the rum cake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour bundt pan, and drop crushed walnuts into the bottom of the pan. Set aside. In the base of a mixer, cream the 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar and the 1/2 cup butter. Add the 3 tablespoons oil, flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and kosher salt combining until evenly distributed. (Mixture will look like fine crumbs.) Mix in the pudding mix. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, rum, vanilla extract, and remaining vegetable oil. Add to the dry mixture and mix well until combined. The batter will be smooth, thin, and pour easily. Pour into the prepared bundt pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the cake comes up clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a rack. Let cool for 20 to 30 minutes. While the cake cools, prepare the rum syrup: In a large saucepan with high sides, combine the butter, water, granulated sugar, and salt. Cook over medium heat until the butter completely melts and the sugar dissolves. Let reduce slightly, keeping an eye on it so it doesn’t boil over. Remove from the heat and stir in the rum (it will bubble). Wash and dry the bundt pan, then place over the cool cake and invert the cake back into the pan. Pour the hot rum syrup all over the cake and let soak for 8 hours (overnight). In morning, invert the cake back onto a serving platter. Keeps covered for 1 week at room temperature.


Vanilla Instant Pudding Mix

Ingredients: 3/4 cup non-fat dry milk powder 3/4 cup cornstarch 1 cup granulated white sugar 2 whole vanilla beans 1 teaspoon Kosher salt Preparing the mix: In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry milk, cornstarch, white sugar, and salt. Use a knife to slice down the center of the vanilla beans lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Add the seeds to the dry ingredients and whisk well until evenly distributed (you may need to use the back of a spoon or spatula to break up the little clumps of seeds). Cut the scraped-out vanilla beans in 2-3 pieces each, and drop into an air-tight jar or container (such as a mason jar). Pour the mixture in, seal, and shake a couple times to distribute the vanilla bean pieces. Store in a cool dry place. To make the pudding: Combine 1/2 cup of the mix with 2 cups of milk in a medium saucepan over high heat, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil (keep an eye on it because this happens quickly!), then reduce heat to a simmer and continue whisking until the mixture thickens and coats the whisk or spoon. (About 3-5 minutes). Pour in a container and let set for at least 5 minutes before serving. Can be served warm or cold.


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