Double Chocolate Birthday Cake

Today was my brother’s 26th birthday! About a week ago, I asked what kind of cake he would like he said “chocolate. Keep it simple”.

I have done this chocolate cake recipe dozens of times. It’s my absolute favorite because it has whipped egg whites so it’s so airy and soft. It’s perfection. Use this cake recipe and pair it with any type of frosting you can think of!

Most of my cake frostings consist of butter cream and sometimes butter is just so heavy, that I thought I would take a break from the butter! Say it isn’t so!!

So today I decided to make a whipped chocolate ganache frosting! Oh my goodness, I gave my family a curve ball with this one. They kept coming up to me saying “what’s this frosting?? It’s so good!”

It was a nice change of pace! It’s very simple and only consists of two ingredients! Cream and chocolate!!

In the instructions below I go into detail on how to treat the cream to get the perfect “whipped” chocolate consistency.

And since this was a birthday cake  all, how could I not top the whole thing off with colorful sprinkles!? Sprinkles just make me happy and they are so cute!

Ingredients:

For the cake

- 2 cups of flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 8 ounces baking chocolate
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs separated
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup buttermilk

For the frosting

- 1 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 16 ounces semi sweet chocolate chips

 

Instructions:

Whipped chocolate ganache frosting should be made several hours ahead. At least 4 hours.

Microwave cream in a heat proof bowl and add chocolate chips into the cream. Mix with a whisk until all the chocolate melts down and there are no lumps.

Allow to cool at room temp before sticking into the refrigerator. Let sit in fridge for about 4 hours or longer.

After it has chilled take the bowl and mix with a mixer until stiff peaks are formed. About 5-7 minutes. The mixture should be fluffy and resemble whipped cream in texture. Place the whipped cream back into the fridge until you are ready to frost the cake.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter three 9 inch baking pans and line the bottom with parchment paper ( also butter the top of parchment paper)

* When I’m baking with circle pans I lay the pan on top of the parchment paper over the counter and trace around the bottom of the pan with a pen, the cut the parchment with scissors so that the parchment paper fits perfectly in each pan.

In a microwaveable bowl, melt the baking chocolate with 1/2 cup of water for about a minute and  half. Take a small whisk or a fork and stir the chocolate down into the water until smooth, then set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt, set aside.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Add in the 4 egg yolks one by one, mixing together slowly to incorporate. Keep the egg whites in a small bowl set to the side. Add in the vanilla and then the melted chocolate.

Alternate between adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk into the chocolate. Mixing well to make sure everything is well combined and you no longer see streaks of chocolate.

Mix the egg whites together in the small to medium sized bowl until they form stiff peaks. Slowly incorporate the egg whites into the batter with a spatula, folding them in and not mixing them in.

Pour the batter evenly into the three prepared baking pans and bake in the oven 20-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool on cooling racks for 20 minutes. Immediately after coming out of the oven, take a knife and slide it around the cake pan to remove the sides of the cake from the pan.

Evenly frost between the three Layers of cake and all over the outside. Top the cake with sprinkles. This cake can sit in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

Boozy Berry Trifle

 

I hope everyone has a very happy 4th of July tomorrow!!

I took to Instagram to ask my friends whether I should post a drink recipe or a dessert recipe inspired by this holiday! I really thought for a moment there, I’d be posting about a drink recipe, but the dessert option ended up winning the poll!

I couldn’t help myself from including a touch of alcohol in this post given that tomorrow is a fun holiday that I love enjoying by the pool with a nice drink!! However, it can be completely optional and you do not have to include the rum that is added- especially if kids will be enjoying this dessert!

I basically just let the berries soak in rum for about an hour so they pack a little punch with each bite!

My trifle includes a fresh sponge cake with only four ingredients, so so so easy! Layered with whip cream and tasty boozy berries. Very simple. Great summer dessert. It feels so light and airy when you’re eating it… it feels guilt free— even though it’s not, lol.

The strawberries I got from HEB yesterday were so incredibly sweet! I kept popping them in my mouth as I was going along baking this dessert. My baby boy GM kept reaching for the blueberries, (the ones not soaked in rum of course) those are his fav!

If you attempt to make the homemade sponge cake instead of using pre packaged, please read special instructions below so your cake comes out perfectly!

I hope you enjoy this post and thank you for taking the time to read!

Ingredients:

For the sponge cake

- 6 eggs at room temp
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder

For the whip cream

- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  Or more to taste
- 1/2 tsp orange zest

For the berries

- 2 cup strawberries
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1/4 cup sugar
- Rum to soak the berries in
- 1-2 tbs sugar for dusting

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut the strawberries and blueberries and add into a large bowl with sugar. Pour enough rum into the bowl until all the berries are submerged in the alcohol. Let the berries soak for about an hour or until you are ready to construct the cake.

*Line The bottoms of two 9 inch baking pans with parchment paper. Do not grease the pans with butter.

*In a mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs for about 2 minutes. Slowly add the sugar while mixing. Let the mixer continue to mix the eggs and sugar until the mixture is creamy and thick- about ten minutes * do not skip this. Next, run the flour and baking powder through a sifter.

*Take the mixture out of attachment and fold the flour into the eggs with a spatula. Do not mix. Fold all of the flour in using the spatula slowly incorporating the flour into the batter. Continue until you no longer see the flour floating around.

Be sure to scrape your spatula to the bottom of the bowl because the flour will sink down there.

Evenly pour the batter into the two baking dishes and bake in the oven for about 25 minutes or until the top is light golden brown.

*Once out of the oven, immediately take a thin knife and scrape around the edges of the cake to separate from the cake pan. Remove the cakes from the pans onto cooking racks and take off the parchment paper. Allow to cool completely.

Take a chilled large bowl and beat the whipping cream and powdered sugar until thick and creamy. Add in the orange zest and mix for another minute or two.

Remove the berries from the rum and onto plate with paper towel. Lightly sprinkle the berries with additional sugar.

To construct the trifle, begin ripping parts of the sponge cake to fill the bottom of the dish. Next arrange berries on top as desired, then add a layer of whip cream. Continue layering two more times so that in total you should have three layers of ripped sponge cake and berries.

Serve and enjoy!

 

Classic Tres Leches

Hoping all you amazing mommas had a very happy Mother’s Day today! We had a blast! Luke was actually scheduled to be working today, but last minute, he was able to arrange having the day off… so glad he did!

We started the morning off by going to my mother in laws! She just had a knee replacement, so she wasn’t able to get out and about with the festivities at my moms house today. I took her a plate of some yummy butter pecan cookies! I will be posting those as well this evening…

After our brunch with her, we went over to my moms house, which is just down the street and we had a pool day! It was so much fun, but it was really hot and now I’m pretty drained from the day.

Anyway, so my grandma had a really rough year this year, medically, so we were especially grateful that we were able to celebrate another mother’s day with her! So this post is dedicated to her! It was her request that I make her a tres leches cake for Mother’s Day! This also happens to be Luke’s favorite cake on earth!

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I have had many versions of this cake! Personally, I do not prefer the cake to be completely soggy because it kind of grosses me out lol, but I like for the bottom half of the cake to be moist and the top half to be a normal consistency! I made two of these cakes last night so I could try to get my measurements right…

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Adding extra baking powder helps with this… Naturally all the milks you add to the cake sink down and settle at the bottom of the cake, so adding a bit more of baking powder will help your cake rise higher. This also helps with the cake not being too sweet. Sweetened condensed milk is like ultra sweet!!!

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Also, my grandma was really tired today and she ended up falling asleep on the recliner during our lunch. When my grandpa asked if she wanted to go home, she said “give me my cake first! I want cake!” Lol.

This is a real simple recipe that is very enjoyable! I hope you enjoy it too.

Serving size: 12
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Cake sets in refrigerator over
night

Ingredients:

For the cake

- 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tbs baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt 
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 tsp vanilla 
- 1/2 cup milk

For the 3 milk mixture 
- 12 ounce can of evaporated 
  milk
- 14 ounce can sweetened 
  condensed milk
- 1 1/2 cup heavy cream

For the whip topping

- 1 pint heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 - 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla
- strawberries for garnish

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 9x 13 inch baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together and set aside. In a large bowl beat the eggs and sugar together. Add in the vanilla, mix and set aside. Pour half of the flour mixture into the egg mixture, incorporate together, then pour the milk into the bowl, then the remaining flour mixture.

Once all combined pour the batter into the greased baking dish and bake 20-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clear.

Let the cake cool completely. In a medium bowl, combine the cream, evaporated milk and condensed milk. Whisk the milks together until combined. Take a toothpick and poke holes all over the entire cake. Next take the milks and pour over the cake. Cover and set in the refrigerator 8 hours or overnight.

For the whip topping, take your cream and pour into a large cold glass bowl. Mix with an electric mixer on high speed until the cream thickens into whipped topping consistency. Slowly incorporate the powdered sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. Spread the topping evenly over the cake and garnish with strawberries before serving.

Poteet Strawberry Cheesecake with Chocolate Drizzle

I had asked some of my friends on social media the other day what kind of recipes they would like me to share on the blog and cheesecake was one of the few requested! I’m not much of a cheesecake fan myself, and I’ve actually never made one, so I was nervous and excited to try and pull this off.

Also a couple days ago, my aunt had come by with a pint of fresh “Poteet” strawberries that my grandpa had planted. I knew I was going to top them onto the cheesecake. I think I was more excited to eat the strawberries than the cheesecake honestly lol. If you’ve never had Poteet strawberries you are missing out. They are so sweet and juicy!!! In a couple of weeks, the city of Poteet throws a large festival called the Strawberry Festival, and it’s kind of a big deal around here. The food is the best part, you can find strawberry nachos, strawberry funnel cakes, margaritas, ice cream, wine, etc. just to name a few!

They don’t only have strawberry food items though, there’s also a lot of really really really good Mexican food, fried foods, turkey legs… omg I’m getting hungry thinking about it.

So like I said I knew I was going to top the cheesecake with these strawberries, but I didn’t know how. I was torn between making a sauce to go over it, like a classic strawberry cheesecake or by topping the fresh berries over the cake and drizzling chocolate over them. I went ahead and let my friends on Instagram decide. Thank you to everyone who voted and helped me decide which way it was going to go!

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8E94A169-6EF2-4700-A069-D4829D1F085D.jpegFor the crust:

- 1 to 1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs 
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
- 6 tablespoons melted unsalted butter

For the cake:

- 4 eight oz packages of cream cheese (full fat)
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- lemon juice from half of a lemon
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/4 cup heavy cream

For the topping

- 1 pint fresh strawberries
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1 tbs heavy cream

Instructions:

Set your oven to 350 degrees then start assembling the pie crust. Take a 9 or 10 inch springform pan and coat the inside with butter. In a food processor, pulse the graham cracker cookies till you make about 1 1/2 cup of crumbs. In a small-medium bowl mix in cookie crumbs with cinnamon. Pour in melted butter and combine with fingers. You should be able to form a soft clump if you squeeze the mixture with your hands. If your crumbs are too crumbly and won’t stick, add tad of water to the mixture until it starts to hold.

Pour the crumb mixture into the bottom of the springform pan. Take two fingers and pinch the crumbs down to the bottom of the pan until the crumbs form an even crust. Now take two pieces of foil and cover the bottom of the springform pan forming the foil up around the edges of the bowl, like pictured below, this is because later when we bake the cake, we submerge the pan in a water bath, and the foil is to protect from water seeping into the pan while it cooks. You will need a large baking dish that the springform pan can fit inside.

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Cook the crust in the oven for 8-10 minutes.

While the crust is baking, take a medium size bowl and begin whipping the cream cheese in a mixer. Once the cream cheese is creamy in consistency, add the vanilla and lemon juice.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, sugar and salt. Slowly combine the dry ingredients into the cream cheese mixture. Next, add your eggs and egg yolk, one by one making sure that each egg is thoroughly integrated into the cream cheese mixture.

Now take the mixture and pour evenly into the pan. Take your springform pan and set into the baking dish. Next you will take a few cups of boiling water and pour into the large pan, about an inch of the way up to the springform pan. This method somewhat steams the cake while it bakes. Now, carefully place the baking dish into the oven and bake for about an hour (could go up to one half hour depending on your oven). I had to go an extra twenty minutes or so, giving the total baking time about 80 minutes.

You’ll know when the cake is done because the outer 2-3 inches of the cake will puff up and be firm. The inside circle of the cake will slightly wiggle like jello if you gently shake the pan, that is normal.

When your cake is done, turn off the heat and crack open the oven door slightly, and allow the cake to cool up to one hour in the oven.

After one hour, take a slender knife and make sure the outside of the cake isn’t sticking to the pan. That can cause the top layer of the cake to crackle. Allow to cool on a wire rack. Once the cake is completely cool, refrigerate for several hours.

Once cake has chilled in fridge at least 3-4 hours, it is ready to serve.

Before serving, cup up the pint of strawberries into slices. Arrange berries over the top of the cake. In a small microwavable bowl, heat the chocolate chips and cream. Drizzle chocolate all over the top of the berries. Slice your cake and it is ready to serve!

“Mexican Chocolate” Dobos Torte

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Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

This was a fun one to make! It was different, but I enjoyed the process of pulling it all together.

Chef Alex Guarnaschelli is my all time favorite chef to watch on television. She’s such a boss lady and I love it. I always see her post pictures of this cake on her social media and knew I’d one day have to make it.

So basically, I learned that this cake is her adaptation of a Dobos Torte. Dobos in Hungarian means “like a drum” but the cake is actually named after Hungarian pastry chef Joseph Dobos.

The concept is that the cake should have hot caramel poured over the top, right off of the stove so that it goops over the cake and hardens as it cools. After the caramel becomes hard, it’s suppose to crackle once you cut Into it! It does get kind of messy!! I had to knock it with the back of my knife to loosen it up before cutting into it.

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Anyway, as I was crafting this recipe together, I thought “what if I put a Mexican chocolate spin on this?!” The idea of that being paired with the hard caramel just sounded like music to my ears! Like I’ve mentioned before I always keep my Mexican vanilla stocked in the pantry, and by incorporating that with some cinnamon, mmmmm it would taste just like abuelitas hot chocolate! Never had that? Click here and thank me later.

My husband Luke said he enjoyed the cake and frosting, but he’d rather have the caramel not be hard. I told him that was the whole concept of this recipe, but he wasn’t really interested, lol. Now that I’ve made this, I feel inspired to make an entirely different Mexican chocolate cake. Possibly with the same frosting but with moist dark chocolate cake? Would anyone be interested in that? Hmmm, maybe I could do that and possibly have it served with a soft caramel vs. the hard crackly kind. Let me know if that sounds good!!

I ended up burning myself while tempering with the hot caramel. Please be careful if you make caramel. The sugar has to get very very hot to melt down and to become amber in color. After my sugar was dark in color, I let it rest for a few minutes, then I poured it into a bowl to cool more. I let it rest for a couple more minutes, and it was still scorching hot when I touched it!! Ugh, I burned my left pointer finger and my lip lol. 😭

So there you have it. Here is my “Mexican chocolate” version of the Dobos Torte. Hope you enjoy

Also, stay tuned for another dessert entry tomorrow. My aunt came by with some home grown “Poteet” strawberries that my grandfather planted. I can’t wait to use them!!

Ingredients:

For the cake

- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter
- 2 cups of sugar
- 6 eggs
- 2 tsp Mexican vanilla 
- 2 tsp cinnamon

 

For the frosting:

- 12 ounces semi sweet chocolate
- 2 tbs heavy whipping cream
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 1/2 Mexican Vanilla

For the caramel topping:

- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tsp light corn syrup

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease two 9 inch cake pans, then lightly dust with flour. To prepare the cake batter, sift the flour, baking powder and cinnamon in one medium sized bowl. In a separate bowl, begin beating the butter until creamy with mixer. Then add the sugar and continue mixing until fluffy. Next, add in the eggs slowly as you continue mixing. Then you will add the vanilla into the batter. Take the flour mixture from the separate bowl and slowly blend the dry into the wet ingredients. Careful not to over mix.

Take 1 1/2 cup of batter into each of the cake pans. Bake until golden brown on top and when a toothpick is inserted into the center that comes out clean. Anywhere between 15-25 minutes. Remove from the oven when they are done and set on baking rack to cool. Once cooled, flip cakes over onto parchment paper. Clean off the pans, re-grease and flour them, then pour the remaining batter evenly into the pans. You can use this method to achieve having four layers, or you can carefully slice your two large cakes in half horizontally. I lost my knife that allows me to be able to do that, so I had to bake my four layers separately in my two baking pans, lol.

Clean the paddles for your mixer as you will need to use them for your chocolate frosting.

For the frosting, in a medium bowl, add the chocolate with heavy cream and simmer over a double broiler. (this is when you use a pot filled 1/4 of the way up with water and boil over medium high heat, then you set your bowl over the pot and allow the contents to cook slowly without having them submerged into the water or in the pan.) When your water is rapidly boiling, you may want to reduce heat down some, place the bowl over the pot and stir your chocolate around until it melts. When the chocolate is melted, set aside and allow to completely cool.

Take the cooled chocolate and cream in the 2 sticks of butter with mixer. Once well combined, add in the 2 cups of confectioners sugar 1/2 of a cup at a time. Then finally add cinnamon and vanilla.

Time to stack your cakes. Begin by placing first layer on your cake stand. Add about 1/2 cup of frosting to the top of layer and spread evenly over, continue by adding the second layer of cake to the top of the chocolate and repeat method of adding another 1/2 cup of frosting to the top, spreading around evenly. Continue till the last layer of cake is added. Frost the top of the cake and all around the sides.

To make the caramel, heat the sugar with the corn syrup in a large pan over low heat. Allow the sugar to melt down, stirring often so it doesn’t stick and burn. Whisk around the entire pan making sure the sugar is cooking evenly throughout. Continue to cook the sugar until smooth and it has turned to the brown caramel color.

Take the skillet and allow to cool for a couple of minutes. I poured my caramel into a second bowl, and it didn’t really help the cooling process and just made me have another dish to wash. So i’d suggest pouring the caramel onto the cake straight from the skillet. Allow to goop over the tops and side of cake. Try to make the caramel a thin layer all over.

If the caramel becomes cool or hard, warm it gently over low heat to loosen it again. Let the caramel cool and completely harden on top of the cake before serving.

Thank you for reading!!

 

 

Coffee Cake with Crumble Topping

 

Thank you for reading! Welcome to my first blog post. First off, I’m not much of a writer, so I will make this short- or try to. If you’re even interested in this post, you’re probably looking for the recipe and not what I have to say about it, lol. And that’s pretty much the purpose of this blog, I just want an outlet to share my recipes with family and friends!

Typical coffee cake doesn’t have actual coffee in it, it could I guess, but it get’s to be called ‘coffee cake’ because you’re suppose to drink coffee while you eat it! When I first made it, I might have accidentally devoured two healthy portions. It’s a really moist cake because of the sour cream added into the batter. My favorite part is probably the crumble though. It adds nice texture and is not too sweet.

Coffee cake is good for breakfast on the go too. You could easily bag it and munch on it during your commute to work. Or for other stay at home mamas like me, it’s perfect for a make ahead breakfast for the week. I just made this cake yesterday so I will probably give pieces of it to my mom and Luke’s mom to take.

If you attempt making this cake, please read my notes on the recipe.

COFFE CAKE

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For the Cake
- 1 Stick of unsalted butter
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 2 Large Eggs
- 2 Cups Flour 
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 Teaspoon Salt (omit this step if you use salted butter)
- 2 Teaspoons Mexican Vanilla 
- 1 1/2 Cup Sour Cream
For the Filling
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar 
- 1 1/2 Teaspoon Cinnamon
For the Topping
- 1 Cup Flour
- 1 Cup Sugar 
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar
- 2 Teaspoons Cinnamon 
- 1 Teaspoon Salt 
- 1 Stick of Unsalted Butter- Melted
Instructions

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

I started my crumble topping before working on my batter. To start, just combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. Melt your stick of butter and combine the melted butter to the dry ingredients. You can mix around with a fork, or your hands. Once everything is combined and kind of crumbly, stick the topping in the refrigerator and don’t bring out, until your cake is ready to stick in the oven.

Now to start on the cake batter. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar, until well combined. Next beat in the two large eggs. A cup at a time, mix in the flour. Once well combined, mix in at once the baking soda, baking powder and salt. Again, you can omit the salt if you are using salted butter. Combine all ingredients with mixer and then add your vanilla and sour cream. Set aside your cake batter and start onto the filling.

This part can be omitted if you’re tired at this point. It’s just an extra added part of sugary cinnamon, a lot of coffee cakes don’t add this at all. But it’s also pretty to look at once you start slicing your cake. Simply combine the cinnamon and sugar in a small to medium bowl, then set aside.

Now it’s time to add your cake into the pan. I used a 7×11 pyrex, because I like my cakes to be thick, a 9×13 I believe is more traditional. I am strict on believing that coffee cakes should not be done in round pans lol. It has to be sliced and served in a square. Looking at my photo it kind of looks like it’s a triangle, but it’s not I promise. Grease your pan and pour half of the batter mixture in. Use a spatula to push the batter against the baking dish. Next spread your cinnamon filling over the batter, again use a knife or spatula to evenly cover. Then you pour the remaining cake batter over the filling. Once poured and evenly covered, it is time to bring out the crumble topping from the fridge. Sprinkle the crumble evenly over the entire dish.

Take your cake and stick into the oven for 50-60 minutes. Kind of a long cooking time, I think because of the sized dish I used.

Notes!!

You do not have to use Mexican vanilla for the cake batter. If you continue to follow my recipes, you will see that I use Mexican vanilla in just about every baking dish I create. However, regular vanilla is fine! My husband got me a large container of Mexican vanilla the last time he went to the valley for work, and i Loveeeee using it!

The 7×11 Pyrex is not a traditional size, a 9 x 13 is a lot more common and it will reduce your baking time by a lot I imagine. Whatever size baking dish you use, I would set your timer to 30 minutes. At some point between 30-40 minutes, my cake was perfectly brown, but it was NOT cooked on the inside all the way, so I covered the dish with foil to prevent it from browning more. This allowed the dish to not burn and to continue cooking on the inside! My entire baking time was 55 minutes with this dish. Again, set your timer to 30 minutes and keep an eye on how it’s looking. Insert a toothpick inside to see if it comes out clear or still wet. A clear toothpick will indicate the cake is done. I stab it a few times around the center to make sure it’s done.

Thanks for reading! 🙂