Wednesday, November 12, 2008
It's time to play 'Use That Ingredient!'
When I asked about ways to make this blog more interesting (either to myself or to my readers), Randi suggested featuring a new ingredient. That sounded like an expensive proposition (not that is has to be but that was just my gut reaction). I started thinking that I already have several strange or uncommon ingredients that I bought and either barely used or didn't use at all. I don't need any more of those odd ingredients lying around. Well, duh, I'll just try to use the stuff I already have before buying some new things to try.
So today's ingredient is butterscotch flavoring.
It's not a weird ingredient but not one I see a lot of recipes calling for. In fact this cookbook might be the only one I have that calls for it. Several recipes in this cookbook call for it so when I saw it at the Amish store, I grabbed a bottle. That was some time ago and this is the first time I've used it.
Reader’s Digest Cakes Copyright 2003
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter
1 ½ cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon butterscotch flavoring or vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature
½ cup milk
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar, to dust
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan.
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Beat the butter, brown sugar, and butterscotch in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, until just blended after each addition. With mixer at low speed, gradually beat in the dry ingredients, alternating with the milk. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a rack. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. I made a frosting out of butter/confectioners's sugar/milk/butterscotch flavoring.
I LOVED this cake. I grew up on Butterscotch Krimpets and this cake, with a simple butter frosting I made using more of the butterscotch flavoring, reminded me of those snack cakes. I saw that Joe at Culinary in the Country also made a version recently, which I think influenced me to choose this recipe. I don't think this recipe is a clone of the Tastycake product like the King Arthur recipe tries to be but it was probably better. This was a darker, moister cake which would have been just fine with just the dust of confectioners' sugar that the recipe called for but I just can't roll that way - I need frosting. I think the frosting was close to the frosting on a Butterscotch Krimpet.
It's probably wrong of me to be so enamored with a recipe that uses artificial flavoring but if it's wrong, I don't want to be right. I will definitely make this again. I still have lots of butterscotch flavoring left - this recipe hardly made a dent in it.
This will be the last cake you see for a while. My oven bit the dust last night. The lower element died - again. I just replaced it about 3 years ago. I briefly got excited about replacing my range completely since it came with the house and it's old, the knobs are falling off, it's white, it's chipped, etc. But when I looked at the ranges I could afford, my excitement diminished. I want an expensive, fancy range. I think I'll just order a new element for this one. Times are tough. This is the only major appliance that we haven't replaced yet but I don't want to skimp.
Of course, I had planned on using my oven this week so I'm going to have to make some changes to the menu now.
Question of the Day: Do you have Tastycakes where you live?