I received a text from my pretend daughter Allie, asking if I had ever made a Cream Sherry Bundt Cake. Not only had I never made one, I’d never heard of such a thing. She went on to explain that it was one of her grandmother’s favorite holiday desserts, and she’d love to bake one. The problem was that grandma’s recipe, as well as anything Allie could find on the internet, required a boxed cake mix and an instant pudding mix. Allie figured a baked from scratch recipe would be even better than the one she remembered. She described the cake as one that was super moist and when it baked, filled the house with the scent of nutmeg and warm spices. This sounded like it might be fun so I asked if she would like me to try and create grandma’s recipe from scratch, which she thought was a fine idea.
Um…. this turned out to be quite the challenge because as far as I could see nobody had ever attempted to make a ‘pudding cake’ from scratch before, so we were in murky and uncharted territory. In addition to all that, waving a baking magic wand and turning boxed mixes into something homemade required utilization of my often-ridiculed lack of mathematical prowess, but we were on a mission and charged forward. Allie was assigned to taste and critique each effort, and after a few tries, I think we might finally be there. Grandma’s recipe called either for Crème Sherry (which is wine fortified with Brandy) or Brandy. I’ve tried it both ways and personally prefer the Brandy version, but Crème Sherry is also good for a more subdued boozy flavor).This cake is delicious on its own, but a few extra easy minutes of effort will reward you with a warm and gooey butterscotch sauce that takes this whole thing right over the top. If you opt out of the sauce idea, your cake can be dusted with powdered sugar, vanilla sugar, or cinnamon sugar before serving.
This cake is easy and fun to make, and even does really well with bundt cake pans with intricate designs on top. I opted for mini-bundt pans for these photos since I’d had them for years and never used them for some strange reason, and they were just right. I’ve also made this in a large, 10 cup bundt pan with the same result. The outer ‘crust’ of the cake is almost crispy, and the center is rich and moist. A pretty good combination if you ask me.
Another added bonus of a design on top is they are all the better for holding extra butterscotch sauce which I am in favor of.
Speaking if sauce, let’s pour some on, shall we? This cake is best eaten the day it’s baked, but never fear. Leftovers can be microwaved for a few seconds and be good as new.
And that’s all there is to it! A quick, easy, little bit boozy piece of cake with a nice nutmeg undertone, topped with a slightly salty, warm butterscotch sauce. Hope you love this as much as I do – and I hope Allie’s grandma will be proud of what we’ve come up with.
Thanks so much for reading today! If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you. I can be reached at birdsnestbites@gmail. com I promise to reply to each and every email sent. xoxoxoxo
- FOR THE BUNDT CAKE
- 2 ½ cups unbleached flour
- 2 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 4 tablespoons powdered milk
- 4 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 4 eggs
- ¾ cup Cream Sherry or Brandy
- ¾ cup milk
- ½ cup canola or other neutral oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- FOR THE WARM BUTTERSCOTCH SAUCE
- ⅓ cup light corn syrup
- 2 tablespoons butter
- ¾ cup dark brown sugar (it’s worth using the dark brown sugar due to its more intense butterscotchy flavor. It also makes your sauce darker, so it stands up better to the lighter cake. On the other hand, if you want to use regular brown sugar, it will still be just fine).
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- FOR THE BUNDT CAKE
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, powdered milk, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon.
- In a medium bowl, add the eggs, canola oil, milk, Cream Sherry or Brandy, and vanilla. Whisk to combine well.
- With the mixer running, slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. When everything has been combined, increase the speed and mix at medium to medium high for about one minute.
- Pour the batter into a well buttered and floured (or use a baking spray which is lots easier) large (10 cup) Bundt pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes, or until a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into the center comes out with dry crumbs, not wet batter. Start checking at about 30 minutes. When you lightly touch the top of the cake, it should feel firm underneath.
- Remove from the oven and set on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes, then gently turn upside down onto your serving platter.
- When the cake has completely cooled, sift powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar, or vanilla sugar generously over the top.
- Slicing and serving is all that’s left to do!!
- FOR THE WARM BUTTERSCOTCH SAUCE
- In a medium sized saucepan, combine the light corn syrup and butter. Cook over medium heat until butter is melted, then add the dark brown sugar.
- Bring mixture to a boil and boil hard for one minute (Your concoction should be boiling like crazy and super foamy. It would be a very good idea not to walk away from the stove while this is happening).
- Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, salt, and whipping cream. Be careful because there may be some sauce sputtering going on, and I wouldn’t want you to get burnt).
- Once everything is well blended, set aside for a few minutes until it gets cool enough to taste without bursting your mouth into flames. As the sauce cools down, it will thicken. Serve while it’s still warm. You can also store this sauce in the refrigerator and microwave until warm for leftovers. PS. Try this on ice cream too!!