Friday, June 7, 2013

Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Bundt with Cinnamon Glaze

Have you ever started a new project or job thinking you would enjoy it but then you are utterly surprised by the amount of joy it brings?  Motherhood was like that for me.  Who knew how gorgeous new babies would smell fresh out of a bath or nuzzling into your shoulder still sleepy from a nap?  You could have told me, but I would never have believed, that I could enjoy changing diapers because I could wonder anew at the perfect little body that we made.  How?!  Or the pervasive elation that comes from seeing a child succeed beyond her own wildest dreams, through hard work and perseverance.  When finally she rolls over.  Or draws her first letters, tongue out, concentration immense.  (Don’t even get me started on when she strides across the stage at her university commencement ceremony!)  Is there any sweeter smile than that of a child shyly proffering the gift she made by hand?  How can you not open your arms and embrace the giver and the gift?  Witnessing my girls grow and blossom into the creative, caring, loving, diligent people they are meant to be makes me deeply joyful, down to my soul.

Almost two years ago, I started this blog without any idea of the joy it would bring either.  I knew I would like the cooking and the writing.  The photography and social media were more of a stretch but I have come to love the challenge of those as well.  The blogging community, including my readers (Yes, you lovely people!) became that sweetly smiling child for me, offering a friendly hand, a supportive word, a pithy comment.   When this post goes live this morning, I will be at my very first blog conference, meeting with members of the community and, I hope, learning how to be better at this blogging thing.  This thing that gives me joy. Thank you for coming along for the ride.

This month’s BundtaMonth theme is swirly cakes!  My cinnamon-pecan-brown sugar filling didn’t so much swirl as solidify into pecan candy, but I can tell you that the Bundt itself was buttery and delicious and the "candy" center was deliciously crunchy.  Scroll on down to the end to see what everyone else made.  Many of them actually swirl.

For the cake:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons  baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk

For the swirl:
3/4 cup pecans
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
 1/2 cup brown sugar
Pinch salt

For the glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-4 teaspoons milk
Pinch salt

Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your Bundt pan by greasing it liberally with oil, butter or cooking spray.  Now shake a little flour around in the grease until the whole inside is well coated.  Set aside.

Toast your pecans lightly in a dry skillet on the stove.  Keep tossing or stirring the pecans so they don’t scorch.  This takes just a few minutes.  When the pecans have cooled, chop them with a knife.

In a small bowl, mix together the ingredients for the swirl, including the chopped pecans.  Set aside.

In a bowl, mix together your flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

In the bowl of your upright mixer or a big mixing bowl, if you are using a handheld mixer, combine the butter and sugar.  Beat until light yellow and fluffy.

Add in the vanilla extract.  Now add in the eggs, beating well between each addition.

Egg one

Egg two

Egg three

Now add in a third of the buttermilk, followed by a third of the flour mixture, beating between each addition.  Continue alternating buttermilk and flour until it is all mixed together and your batter is complete.

Spoon about half your batter into the prepared Bundt pan and smooth it out.

Sprinkle on the swirl mixture.

Top with the remaining batter, smoothing it out when you are done.

Bake for about 30-40 minutes or until the cake is lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

Cool for about 15-20 minutes.  The cake should begin to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Turn the cake out onto a plate and leave to cool completely.   If any pieces stick to the bottom of the pan – sadly, this happens sometimes – just loosen them with a spatula and stick them back on the cake.   Glaze covers a multitude of sins.

In a small bowl, (The one the swirl ingredients were in will do nicely and you don’t even have to wash it first.) combine the powdered sugar, vanilla, pinch of salt and two teaspoons of milk.  Mix thoroughly with a small spoon.

Keep adding milk one teaspoon at a time until the glaze is barely pourable.   Drizzle it over the top of the completely cooled Bundt.


Have you ever taken on a project or started something new that you enjoyed more than you ever thought you would?


Here is how you can be a part of Bundt-a-Month:
Simple rule: Bake us a swirly bundt
Post it before June 30, 2013
Use the #BundtaMonth hashtag in your title. (For ex: title could read  #BundtaMonth: Cherry Bundt)
Add your entry to the Linky tool below
Link back to our announcement posts

Even more bundt fun! Follow Bundt-a-Month on Facebook where we feature all our gorgeous bundt cakes. Or head over to our Pinterest board for inspiration and choose from hundreds of Bundt cake recipes.
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  1. Beautifully written and baked - as always- Stacy! I'm in Austin, too. Hope to meet you here in person at BlogHer Food =)

  2. Oh, YAAAAY! Can't wait to meet you! I am driving in this morning from Houston but should be there before breakfast. Or during breakfast.

  3. What a lovely post! Hope you enjoy BlogHer Food. I've never been so I'm a little jealous :) This bundt is so wonderful! Love cinnamon and pecans together and that cinnamon glaze is to die for.

  4. Wishing I could have been at BlogHer Food this weekend too. I hope you have a great time there. So true how a blog can be your "baby" and bring so much joy. The community of bloggers and readers are a treasure that keeps giving each day.

  5. Stacy,
    what an absolute beauty!!! and wow! I am sooo jealous. . I wish I were going to BlogHer Food!!! My husband has a conference this same weekend so I couldn't go. . how old are your daughters? I love how you opened this post. . so beautifully written! :) LOVE this bundt cake!!

  6. What a lovely post. And candy center sounds even better than swirl. ;)

  7. Awwww I love hearing about the joy motherhood has brought you (so refreshing from what people usually say when I say I'm so excited to have kids someday, which is "you won't be" and I'm like "your poor children") This cake is sooo delicious looking and I would totally eat a slice for breakfast because...there's cinnamon so that makes it breakfast food, right? :P

  8. Look at that big yummy swirl. Love it!!

  9. I hope you are enjoying your first conference. I hope to go to one in the near future too. Lovely cake!!

  10. It's been great so far, Holly. Lots to learn and lots of lovely people. Thank you!

  11. You know I'm not a sweet eater but I have a hard time resisting pecans, Kelli. Even I ate a couple of slices over the last two days.

  12. Have fun at your blog conference! Your Bundt cake looks delicious!

  13. I love this cake and I sure hope you are having a blast at the conference.

  14. Oh, this looks like the perfect classic bundt cake. That swirl is what my dessert dreams are made of!

  15. I want to take a spoon and dig that swirl out and eat it immediately!

  16. This looks super moist and I would dive right into that swirl!

  17. Thanks, Heather! I had a great time.

  18. Thanks, Kim! It was such fun meeting fellow bloggers and I learned so much!

  19. Thanks, Carrie! I can hardly believe it's been two years and at the same time, I feel like I've been doing this forever.

  20. Ha, Laura! You would be in good company at my house.

  21. It was very buttery and moist, Sandra. Thank you!


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