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Sweet Potato Cake and Spiked Sugar Glaze – Blog Party 15

Today I learned that a friend had breast cancer. Today I learned that a family member had passed away. Today I learned of a couple getting married. Today I learned a friend had her baby. Sorrow and happiness were overwhelming and I dealt with them the only way I know how: I am not an emotion eater, I am an emotion baker.

Faced with life’s joys and pains my preservation system is to put on some music and get myself in the kitchen. I baked non stop this afternoon. I found myself wanting round small things, Fall flavors, butter, eggs: familiar things that I knew how to control.By the end of the day my apron was covered in sugar, my slippers dusted with flour, my kitchen sink overflowing with pots and pans. I was calmer, I was tired, I was happy. Did I make all these baked goods for us? No. You see, part of my emotion coping system is to make sure everybody else around me is well fed, hydrated, and happy. I packed some of the stuff in containers, got some milk and rang the neighbors' doors. That’s when hubby said: "you are like the woman in the book you just read!" and then I knew I had my entry for Stephanie’s Blog Party 15.

The theme this month was to make something from one of our favorites books. I baked a recipe for a cake I found in this book I just finished, Eat Cake, by Jeanne Ray. I know she said an appetizer and a drink but I blog about sweets, so I hope she’ll accept my entry as a "if you still have room for dessert" one as far as the cocktail part, there is rum in the glaze! Although it is not my favorite book, it is an easy read and I found a lot of similarities with the main character. When faced with difficult decision or stressful situation, Ruth calms her nerves by picturing herself inside a cake. She then proceeds to bake one and gives ot to her family or friends. This afternoon I was Ruth by making one of her famed cakes. The author was gracious enough to include the recipes for the featured cakes at the end of the book and I picked the Sweet Potato Bundt Cake one, minus the raisins as my husband dislikes them, and made mini ones.

Sweet Potato Mini Bundt Cakes and Spiked Sugar Glazed, adapted from "In The Sweet Kitchen" by Regan Daley:
Makes 12 small cakes or a large one

2 cups mashed sweet potatoes
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup rum, divided

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a mini bundtcake pan (used twice) or one large pan.In a large bowl of stand mixer, beat the eggs a little to break them up. Add the sugar and beat 2 minutes until thick and pale. Add the oil and vanilla. Add 1/4 cup rum and sweet potatoes. Mix thoroughly.
In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add the flour mixture to the batter in 3 additon, alternating with the buttermilk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.
Divide into the pan cavities and bake for 30-45 minutes. Cool for about 10 minutes, invert onto a cooling rack set over a baking sheet to catch the excess glaze.

Combine 1/2 cup dark brown sugar (I used light), 4 Tb. butter and 3 Tb. whipping cream in a saucepan over medium high heat until it comes to a boil. Continue to boil until it thickens a bit, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add 1/4 c. remaining rum.Poke holes in the cakes with a skewer and spoon the glaze all over the cakes. Wait 15 min utes. Scoop the glaze that has dripped into the baking sheet and repeat the procedure.
These are good!

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Anonymous October 19, 2006 um 7:01 am

i love that book too 🙂 but i haven’t had a change to make anything from it..

Anonymous October 19, 2006 um 7:31 am

We pretty much take anything for blog party, I mean, who is going to pass this up?

Anonymous October 19, 2006 um 9:09 am

What an emotional rollercoaster of a day. I’m glad that you have such a healthy means of dealing with your emotions, as must those around you who are on the receiving end of this kind of bounty.

Beautiful bundts, I love that they feature sweet potato 🙂

Julia October 19, 2006 um 10:37 am

hi Helene,
I’m so sorry for you and can imagine your mixed feelings.
Glad to read the baking helped a bit and was a bit relaxing…
this mini cake looks truly amazing with that fluffy inside and sweet glaze…well done and very nice blog party entry…!

ps – yes! my Paris plans are indeed on track…actually I really need to stop planning – my list is already way too long…=)

Anonymous October 19, 2006 um 1:45 pm

Helene, I’m so sorry for the rough day that you’ve had, that’s life I guess, never know what is just around the corner. I wish you strength and courage to deal with these days.

wheresmymind October 19, 2006 um 2:07 pm

Man that’s a high/low day…I’m an even keel type of guy…swings like that aren’t fun

Bron October 19, 2006 um 10:57 pm

Gosh what a day! Your cake looks delicious!

Helene October 20, 2006 um 2:55 am

Flory: it is a nice summer read, all the recipes look delicious.

Peabody: she said "yes", and you are right, who would not nwant dessert.

Ellie: thank you . Nobody in the neighborhood complained, the kids even wanted seconds!

Julia: now the reality of everything is kicking in and I am drained!

Monisha: thank you should really for your kind wishes. We should really try to get together since we live close by. I passed you on my way to Greenville last sunday. Did you see me wave?!!

wheresmymind: some people live for drama, I don’t, I avoid like the plague but sometimes life catches up with you and gives you a big dose of it.

bronwyn: thanks for stopping by.

Jen October 20, 2006 um 12:45 pm

A cake made with sweet potato, I must give this a try. Thanks for the recipe!

Orchidea October 20, 2006 um 1:53 pm

What a nice cake you have made… I like sweet potatoes a lot!

Anonymous October 23, 2006 um 12:54 am

What a beautiful post, Helen! Like you, I know that baking can help in so many ways.

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