Cakes, Pies & Tarts · Uncategorized

When Awesome Goes Astray

Brown Sugar Buttermilk Poundcake - The Duo Dishes

The title of this post could have you thinking disaster was recently on the menu, but that’s not fully the case. Here’s the thing. We always keep it very real with you guys. When things go awry here, you will know. There’s no reason to sugar coat it. It’s just food, and sometimes food can be finicky. Let’s talk about this bundt cake. Yes, what you see above is a bundt cake in spirit. You see, a tricky bundt pan with crazy creases, edges and swirls housed the most deliciously moist bundt cake in all the word. The final cake was going to be dessert for a birthday dinner. Apparently, a couple of spots in the bundt pan did not receive adequate amounts of butter or flour to keep the cake from sticking. Needless to say, parts of the cake stuck to the pan, which was a very disappointing. Never ones to be foiled, quick thinking fixed the problem right away. Maybe an awesome-looking can went astray, but the taste was definitely not the problem.

Even a cake that falls apart in the pan should not ruin your day. Instead of having a gorgeous, spiral bundt dusted with powdered sugar on a cake stand, the bundt that survived was sliced into pieces and layered on a gorgeous plate. With a little powdered sugar on top, no one knew the difference. Unfortunately, all of those pieces were gobbled up before a photo could be taken. Good thing there was extra cake batter that had been baked in a smaller pan to yield a slice that would suffice for the camera. When you have brown sugar and buttermilk working together in a dessert, they can do nothing but good. This cake only takes a few minutes to make and even less to eat. The pears could have easily been summer’s sweet peaches or fall’s ripe apples. Dollop an ever so tiny bit of whipped cream on top, and you have a dessert that pleases anyone. Oh, and the moral of this story? Always keep your bundts nicely buttered.

Brown Sugar Buttermilk Poundcake with Caramelized Pears (Inspired by a recipe on Tasty Kitchen) – Serves 14 to 16
12 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature, plus extra for greasing the bundt pan
2 1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
5 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups flour, plus extra for dusting the bundt pan
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup buttermilk

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
4 large pears, cored and cut into 1″ slices
Water, if necessary

1. Butter and flour a bundt pan, making sure to coat the interior well. Set aside.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and both sugars until fluffy and creamy, approximately 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, until fully combined, then incorporate the vanilla extract.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger. Set aside.

4. Add the combined dry ingredients and buttermilk to the creamed butter and sugar, alternating between the two. Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan.* Bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees for 60-70 minutes or until done. Remove from the oven and cool a few minutes before unmolding it from the pan.

5. As the cake cools, begin to caramelize the pears. Plop the butter into a medium sized, shallow pan over medium high eat. Once melted, add the sugar and stir to combine the two. Slide the pears into the pan and toss to coat in the butter and sugar.

6. Allow the sugar to bubble and froth around the pears, then reduce the heat to medium low. Continue cooking the pears for another 6-8 minutes, allowing them to brown on all sides, and stirring often to prevent burning. (If you find that your sugar seizes up or hardens too quickly, you can add a bit of water, one teaspoon at a time, just until the sugar loosens up.) Serve the pears with slices of the cake.

*You just may have a little extra batter that will not fit into the bundt pan, so be prepared to pour the rest into a mini loaf pan or even a muffin tin.

Click HERE for the printable recipe.


13 thoughts on “When Awesome Goes Astray

  1. Looks fine to me…Yummy! Refreshing to see other bloggers who admit that things aren’t always picture perfect in the kitchen. The key is how to turn it around! Happened to me at Christmas with a Eggnog Bundt cake. I inverted it and no one was the wiser. Great job guys!

  2. i’ll pass on the whip cream but a cake is cake and if it’s good it’ll be eaten even if the form jacks it all up… 😉

  3. I LOVE messed up cake, and you have so taken away the pressure of everything always turning out liek one hopes! hahaha Great job.

  4. I hate to say this, but I like posts like this that remind me that other bloggers are human too. Sometimes it can feel like bloggers never have any minor mishaps in the kitchen since we tend to only post the raving successes. Glad to hear you were able to pull this one off and in fact, if you hadn’t told me, I would have been none the wiser.

  5. Awesome safe on what could have been a disaster! I love being challenged like that when something doesn’t quite work out the way you plan. I usually freak out a bit first, but it often works out better than I planned. And for something like this with brown sugar and buttermilk, it would be super hard to really mess up!

  6. I’ve definitely had experience in trying to salvage broken cakes. It’s always a learning experience!

    This cake sounds delicious enough to risk it though. Brown sugar = deliciousness.

  7. Bundt pans while able to make a beautiful cake have become the bane of my baking. Every once and a while I seem to get overconfident and lazy with my prep and then disaster. I have to scoop it out.

    This recipe looks scrumptious though! I am going to have to try it.

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