Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Brown Sugar Cake with Butterscotch Icing

I really wanted to bake a cake the other day, and didn't have any carrots for carrot cake, nor was I in the mood to bake that same chocolate cake again (though I do love it enough to only ever make it, my friends will tire of it, and that would be a shame). I took a yellow cake recipe from a cookbook I trust and adjusted some things and am quite satisfied with the result. Yves, my darling roommate, was hanging around this morning while I was taking photos of the cake and couldn't resist taking a bite, which turned into a slice. All she said was "Oh WOW." Good enough for me!

Butterscotch is a really gross color, if you ask me. I'm glad it doesn't look that way in the photo, because let me tell you how scary the icing looked when it was about halfway made. Pinky peachy brown, yucko. Fortunately the powdered sugar eased the eyesore a bit. Besides, butterscotch tastes so good, who cares what color it is? Probably only me. But I do look at colors analytically as part of my job, so I'm allowed. There are worse eccentricities.

Brown Sugar Cake with Butterscotch Icing

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg + 2 egg yolks
2 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350ยบ. Line two 9" cake pans with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a medium bowl, cream the butter, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla with a hand mixer. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and beat in until smooth and shiny, then scrape down the bowl and stir by hand for a few seconds to get rid of any remaining bubbles or flour.
Pour the batter into the two cake pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before icing and assembling the layers.

Butterscotch Icing
1 bag butterscotch chips
1 cup butter (2 sticks) at room temperature
4 tbsp sour cream
3 to 4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tbsp whole milk
pinch of salt

In a sauce pot over low heat, melt the butterscotch chips. Remove from heat and mix in the butter, milk, sour cream, salt, and confectioners' sugar with a hand mixer. Add more milk or sugar as needed to get the texture you prefer.

Assemble and decorate the cake as desired. Top with chopped walnuts if you know what's good for you.


  1. I want to eat that so bad cause it sounds so incredibly good!

  2. I bought this bag of brown sugar at Wegman's for a dollar. Now I know what to do with it and the flour I bought. Never made a cake. Here goes!