Cake for Breakfast, Bitches

Mmmmmm. Cake. I LOVE cake. Nothing in this world tops a plain yellow cake. Except maybe a yellow cake with my Meme’s fluffy frosting. (Snort. Nothing tops a cake…. ok ok.) Don’t get me wrong, chocolate cake is delicious. But yellow cake is sublime.

So, what if I told you that you could have cake for breakfast and that it would be slightly healthier than pancakes? As in, it has less sugar (unless you’re some kind of weirdo who eats pancakes without syrup.) Silliness aside, the ingredients for pancakes or this yellow cake are practically interchangeable. Add some low-sugar jam, and we’re done.

We picked this jam up at Costco, and it’s quite tasty. It is not very sweet, though – so if you like a really sweet jam, this is not for you. But for a cake filling, it is spot on.

Shall we?

Cake:
2 c. AP flour
1 ¼ c. sugar
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter
1 c. buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350*. Get out two 8” or three 6” round pans.
Alrighty, y’all know I love me the creaming method of cake creation – so here it is:
In the Kitchenaide, with the paddle attachment, put all the dry ingredients. Give a couple spins to combine, then toss in the stick of butter (Cold from the fridge is fine). Run on medium for a couple of minutes, until the mixture looks like a bowl full of fine crumbs.
While that’s going, line the bottom of the cake pans with parchment, then grease and flour the pans. No, this is not overkill. You could parchment the sides, as well, if you want a super-smooth side. I didn’t – I’m lazy.
Back at the mixer, when the mix looks like crumbs, pour in the three liquid ingredients, bring up to medium high then high for about three minutes – until the mixture looks fluffy and is a lighter color than when you started.
Evenly divide between the pans. Give each a good whack, and bake for 30-35 minutes (start testing at 25 for the six inchers.) And, I weigh mine when it’s by three because otherwise I have vastly different sized layers. Eyeball it at your own risk.

When they test clean with a toothpick, cool on a rack for ten minutes (they’ll still be warm), then remove the cake from the pan. Cool completely. Layer with your compote or jam, sprinkle with powdered sugar and you are good to go.
Bon apétit

What about Meme’s frosting? I will try and fit that in to a post here soon. The interwebs knows about it, especially because the Pioneer Woman extolled its wonder a while back – check it out if you can’t wait!

Spicy Cherry Tomato Onion Jam, aka Grown Up Ketchup V2.0

 Cherry Tomato Jam

Our fabulous neighbors who market have struck again! This time with four pounds of cherry tomatoes from the Market on the Move.  But it’s December, so cooking them was the main option.  Ya’ll know I love me some cherry tomato jam, so I thought it’d be fun to mix it up a little this time around. Add some spice. Add half onion. I’d been reading about slow cooker jams, so I thought, “Hey! Let’s try it!”

Jam Montage
What could possibly go wrong?

 So, I got all the ingredients in the crockpot about midday, happily anticipating canning some jam after dinner. …. Fast forward to 6 pm. Yes, that would be six hours later. When suddenly I remember an essential element of jam making: evaporation. And an essential element of the slow cooker’s success: lack of evaporation. I had a soupy mess that looked almost exactly like it did six hours earlier. Sigh. So, I had to ice bath those puppies and started again the next morning. A couple hours on low in a stock pot on the cook top, and we were ready to rock and roll. 

Finally!
Finally!

This version is very tasty, but it can’t stand on its own as a jam like previous versions – say with a bacon or cheese scone. With a good strong cheese like asiago or Manchega and some crispy bread, though? We are talking seriously tasty.

Know any Ploughman looking for lunch?
Know any Ploughman looking for lunch?

 

Tangy, sweet, creamy, crunchy. That's the four food groups, right?
Tangy, sweet, creamy, crunchy. That’s the four food groups, right?

 Bon appétit!  Try it, and share how it goes!
Ingredients
3.75# grape or cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
2# sugar
1 large white onion, grated
2 sm. White onions, in ¼” crescents
3 cloves garlic, peeled and smooshed
½ c. balsamic vinegar
3 dashes Worsteshire sauce
3 tsp. grated ginger (or 3 Dorot frozen ginger cubes)
1 tsp. Liquid Smoke
2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
1 tsp. pimenton dulce ahumado
1 tsp. red chili flakes
1/2 tsp. ground clove
Freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
Put everything in a big stock pot, cook on low until it is reduced to a good jam consistency. Put in sterile jars in the fridge or the freezer. If you’d like to can, I’ll put a link below with the directions.
For canning directions. These folks know their stuff
http://www.pickyourown.org/jam.htm

Not-So-Cherry Cherry Tomato Jam

CherTomFIN3

So, you know when you go to Costco and get that HUGE clamshell of cherry tomatoes, and you tell yourself – Oh! I’ll eat all of them. They look so good! I’ll have some every day!  
Only a week later they look like this?

CherryTomOLDOr, maybe you have a neighbor who went to Market on the Move and brought you four pints of them? (Because you have the best neighbors ever!)

CherTomSTILL2

 

What to do, what to do? Soooo many cherry tomatoes. Some a little on the sad side. Well at our house, that means cherry tomato jam.  

This stuff is like grown-up ketchup – it goes on everything.  On a sliced baquette with some goat cheese. On a pork chop. On a ham and cheese scone. On a bacon sandwich. Everything, I tells ya.

I make mine with the toms, some grated onion and sliced shallot, thyme, sugar, balsamic vinegar, worcestershire, garlic and olive oil.

All the bits...
All the bits…

 Since these were M-O-M cherry tomatoes, and most likely not organic, I gave them two good washes with soapy hot vinegar water.

IMGP2749Anybody with a split skin, I tossed.  (Hello? Hot soapy vinegar water?)  Next, slice the toms in half. These aren’t cranberries – they don’t automatically pop when they’re done. Trust me, I’ve tried.  You get stuck trying to mash them at the end and it’s a pain. Plus, this way you can inspect each one.

CherTomSLICE

Throw them in the pot and simmer on low for a couple hours. I actually wound up having to add some tomato paste to mine. It *is*January, they weren’t exactly chock full of tasty tomato-loids.

CherTomPOT

 

You can can it at this point. Or freeze it. Or just toss it in the fridge for up to a few weeks. I’ve been known to make a mini batch of these when I’ve got a partial pint mummifying on the counter.

I tried to use less sugar this time, and it did not set up – it’s like a thick tomato jam sauce type thing. But still *very* tasty. Just not as pretty. And, unfortunately, I’ve promised some to friends so hello, cooking shame. Haven’t seen you in like…a day.

So tasty!
So tasty!

Alright – moral of the story? Never throw away ageing cherry tomatoes again!

 

Cherry Tomato Jam, Not-So-Cherry
Serves 56
Sweet and tangy with thyme, vinegar and mild onion. Yum!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
2 hr
42 calories
8 g
0 g
1 g
0 g
0 g
45 g
2 g
8 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
45g
Servings
56
Amount Per Serving
Calories 42
Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
2%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 2mg
0%
Total Carbohydrates 8g
3%
Dietary Fiber 0g
1%
Sugars 8g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
6%
Calcium
0%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 4 pints cherry tomatoes (about 1.25 #), superwashed and halved
  2. 2 c. sugar *
  3. 2 c. water
  4. 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  5. 1/3 c. grated onion
  6. 1 medium shallot, sliced in to thin rings
  7. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  8. 1/4 c. (4 glugs) of good olive oil
  9. 1 Tbsp. wocestershire sauce (you know you can get anchovy-free vegetarian sauce, right?)
  10. 1/8 c. balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. Wash and halve the toms.
  2. Throw everything in a large pot and simmer on low for two or so hours.
  3. Can it or freeze it.
Notes
  1. This made seven half-pints.
  2. You may want to add a touch more balsamic if you are freezing. Because I canned mine, I put two teaspoons of cider vinegar in each jar before filling it.
  3. You should double the sugar if you'd like a more jam-like consistency.
beta
calories
42
fat
1g
protein
0g
carbs
8g
more
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