Thursday, January 16, 2014

Pecan Bundt Cake with Orange Cream Cheese Icing for #BundtBakers


This beautiful pecan Bundt cake is made with very little flour since the coarsely ground pecans bind with the sugar and eggs to create a rich batter.   It bakes up light and is perfectly complemented by the rich orange cream cheese icing. 

I know your mother told you differently growing up but sometimes having a reputation is a good thing.  When people know you love to cook and bake, for instance, they buy you cookbooks and magazines.  They send you interesting links to deliciousness and sometimes they even cut recipes out of newspapers for you.  When we were in Rhode Island over Christmas, my mother-in-law handed me a bit of the Houston Chronicle “Flavor” section.  She had pulled out the pages, folded them up and brought them with her from home because she knew I would like to read them.  Because: Pecans!  They were FULL of pecan recipes.  Little did she know, but I was especially pleased because our new Bundt Bakers group theme for January was going to be NUTS and pecans are my go-to nut of choice.  In fact, I’m the host for this inaugural event so I chose the theme!

The only major tree nut that exists naturally in North America, the pecan grows wild in groves as well as in cultivated orchards.  The name pecan comes from the Algonquin word meaning “needs a rock to crack.”   I find a nutcracker much more useful.  Pecans were a major source of nutrition for Native Americans and became a staple for cooking and baking for the settlers as well.  Of course, they are crunchy and wonderful but, according to the appositely named website for the National Pecan Shellers Association, I love Pecans, they are also very heart healthy!  Thanks to well-sealed Ziploc bags and a big deep freezer, pecans feature heavily in my kitchen all year long.

Adapted from a recipe printed in the Houston Chronicle contributed by Carol Aimone from Tomball, Texas.

Ingredients
For cake:
2  1/2 cups or 315g chopped pecans, toasted, plus another generous handful for decorating, if desired.
3 tablespoons flour plus more for coating your Bundt pan
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 eggs
1 cup or 225g sugar
Butter or non-stick spray for coating your Bundt pan

For the icing:
8 oz or 225g cream cheese
1 oz or 30g butter
16 oz or 450g confectioners’ or icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or essence
Zest 1 navel orange
2-3 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Method
Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your Bundt pan by slathering it liberally with butter, spraying it generously with non-stick spray and then coating with flour.  Do this and do this well.  You will thank me later.  Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, combine the three tablespoons of flour, the baking powder and the salt.

Put half of your pecans in the food processor and process until they are coarsely ground.   Add them to the flour bowl.  Repeat with the remaining pecans.




Put your sugar and eggs in the processor and process until completely smooth.


This will be very liquid.  Add the pecan mixture and process again, scraping down the sides, if necessary.   The mixture make get a little foamy.



Pour into your prepared Bundt pan and bake in your preheated oven for about 50-55 minutes or until a tester (I use a wooden satay stick.) comes out clean.



Meanwhile, you can be making the icing.

Put all the ingredients into your mixing bowl, starting with only two tablespoons of orange juice.

Beat until thoroughly mixed and creamy.  If it seems a bit too thick to spread, add the extra orange juice a little at a time, beating well in between, until the icing is of good spreadable consistency.

When the cake is baked, remove the pan from the oven and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes on a wire rack before inverting and removing the cake from the pan.



We are all friends here so I am going to share the photo that never usually gets seen.

When the cake sticks in the Bundt pan.




Never mind though.  Just pry the pieces out and set them back where they belong.  The icing will cover everything and no one will be the wiser.  And next time you will vow to butter and flour that pan more generously!

Allow the cake to cool completely.

Cover with your orange cream cheese icing.   Because of the delicate state of my cake, I decided to put the icing in a decorating bag and pipe it on instead of trying to spread it with a spatula.  Sprinkle with the handful of extra pecans, if desired.

I think it turned out rather pretty.


And even when it was cut, you would never know what near tragedy had been averted.



Enjoy!


BundtBakers

I am delighted to be hosting this inaugural edition of Bundt Bakers.  I chose NUTS as the theme since we are all nuts about Bundts and couldn’t imagine not baking at least one a month when the BundtaMonth group disbanded.

Have a look at all the wonderful nutty Bundts we’ve baked for you!  For information about how you can join us in the coming months, scroll on down.

We are a group of Bundt loving bakers who get together once a month to bake Bundts with a common ingredient or theme.  Follow our Pinterest board right here.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send me an email at foodlustpeoplelove@gmail.com or ask to join our private Facebook group.


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15 comments:

  1. So great that you started a bundt group Stacy! This cake with almost no flour is a dream come true! wow, looks amazing.

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  2. Join us some time, Paula! We are very informal and everyone is going to take a turn hosting and choosing the main ingredient.

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  3. Sorry but I can't help but giggle over the photo of the cake that stuck to the pan. It's happened to all of us and covering it up with frosting is truly the answer (unless totally destroyed then it is trifle time). Anyway, pecans are my favorite too so you know I'm loving this cake with the ground pecans all through it.
    Thanks so much for heading up Bundt Bakers and I can't wait to see all the bundts baked for the group.

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  4. Wow, I adore your icing technique! Love the mostly-nuts cake. I have a bag of ground pecans. I wonder how much ground pecans that would be? You didn't happen to measure it, did you?

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  5. First off look at the color of those gorgeous eggs!!! Secondly you totally amazed me with how you pulled that cake back together with that amazing icing. I would have pitched it in tears, good for you!! And lastly, a huge thank you for putting this group together and for all your hard work, we are all very thankful!!

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  6. Every month when it's time to unveil my bundt cake from the pan, I feel like I'll have a nervous breakdown. But the best part about a cake is that you can ice them and when done intelligently like you have, no body will know! Oh and the combination of cream cheese and orange is so refreshing!

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  7. Wow, amazing cake! I also hold my breath as I turn over the pan hoping that my bundt comes out in one piece - maybe we need to come up with some kind of #BundtBakers secret chant that brings us good luck before we unmold our bundts ;). And I also loved the color of those egg yolks.

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  8. Oh Stacy....this bundt turned out really well! Even as you showed us the broken cake, I just wanted to reach over and grab a chunk of it! I love pecans a lot, too! And especially when they are covered in orangey cream cheese goodness! Thanks for stepping up for us....so glad we are all still baking together! : )

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  9. This is beyond decadent and perfect for a celebration!

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  10. I didn't measure it in cups, Dorothy, but if you have a kitchen scale, use 315g or 11.1 oz. I find that weighing in grams is much more accurate.

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  11. I could have shown just the finish cake but I decided to keep it real. As you say, we've all done it and I wanted to show one method of salvaging the disaster. I've done my share of trifles too. :) Thank you so much for all of your help with the coding, Renee. Couldn't have done it properly without your detailed instructions!

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  12. Love the history fun factoids, Stacy...And I would love a slice of your cake...You had me at orange cream cheese frosting!

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  13. Well my cake did the same thing except i couldnt salvage it. Yours looks great by the way. I sure could go for a big old slice of it right now.

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    ReplyDelete
  15. Kudos on sharing the photo! I love ground nuts in baked goods, so this gets a big thumbs up from me!

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