Friday, February 25, 2011

Rainy Day Rum Cakes

Rain, rain, go away.  And that goes for you too, snow.

It was a drizzly, gross day here in Middletown.  We're counting down the days until Spring Break, dreaming of beaches and better weather.  Unfortunately, I won't be going anywhere warm this break, so I really don't have any tropical vacation to look forward to in order to pull me out of the rainy day blues.  I do, however, have a birthday cake to make.

My friend Ericka turned 21 this week, so you know what that means- a boozy birthday cake!  My solution to combining a birthday, pre-Spring Break excitement, and rainy day blues?  Mini tropical rum cakes, of course!

Before I tell you about the cakes, I need to tell a little anecdote about the rum.  I usually don't drink, and I just turned 21 two weeks ago, so my experience with buying alcohol is very limited.  My first experience in a liquor store was buying a bunch of wine for my birthday party, and my second was today.  I walked up to the counter, placed my hands on the counter, and very shyly said to the two men behind the counter, "Ok, so I've never bought rum before, but I need it to make a cake" and then smiled and waited for a response.  The two men laughed, asked me a bunch of questions about the kind of cake, and then argued about which one they should sell me.  They eventually settled on a small bottle of white rum, (even though the recipe calls for dark), and told me their names and that I could feel free to bring them a piece of it.  Little do they know, I'll be showing up with two little cakes tomorrow.

Anyway, back to the cake.  I enlisted the assistance of my friend and fellow baking queen, Annika, to help me out on this one.  (We also just needed an excuse to catch up).  I adapted the cakes from this recipe.  My changes: For the cake batter, I added two rings of canned pineapple that I pureed in my food processor, and then 1/3 cup flour to compensate for the added moisture.  It gave the cake a fluffier texture with just a little more of that tropical flavor I was going for.  For the rum syrup, I substituted the water for canned pineapple juice, and added about 1/4 cup shredded coconut.  I'm not sure if it was because I used white rum instead of dark rum, but you can definitely taste it in these cakes.  If I were to make them again, I might add coconut to the cake batter and add more sugar to the rum syrup.

Ingredients and mini bundt pans
The fluffiest cake batter I've ever seen!
The little cakes had a really beautiful color and didn't rise too awkwardly
Pouring the rum syrup
Warning: it may look cute, but this baby is LOADED with rum

Love and cookies,

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