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A Tasty End To Thanksgiving Dinner

Apple Cider Bundt with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting evokes the flavors of the holidays.

It goes without saying that the pinnacle of Thanksgiving is the highly anticipated feast.  For many, this feast involves two components: cooking and, of course, eating.  Yes, the cooking may be stressful.  Factor out the daunting task of roasting the turkey, however, and the meal becomes greatly simplified. 

The side dishes and desserts of any Thanksgiving feast are just as important as the turkey itself; they allow for both variety and creativity.  So instead of serving the usual pumpkin pie or the expected pecan pie at this year's Thanksgiving dinner, why not try this dessert instead: Apple Cider Bundt with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

This cake is simple, rustic, and full of warm fall flavors.  The cake itself has a hearty crumb, while still being incredibly moist.  The finishing touch – a cinnamon cream cheese frosting – adds just enough tanginess to balance out the sweetness of the cake.  And with every bite, the flavor of the apple cider (which is in both the batter and the frosting) sings. 

While mass-produced apple cider can be purchased at most any supermarket, consider using locally produced cider instead.  Doing so is a great way to support Long Island industry, such as Jericho Cider Mill, as well as get the freshest product possible. 

In the likely event that there is leftover frosting (as this recipe makes more than needed), definitely try making homemade cinnamon buns the next morning and generously dousing them in this delicious frosting. 

Jericho Cider Mill is located at 73 Route 106, Jericho, NY 11801. 

 Apple Cider Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

(recipe by Kim Karter)

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For the CAKE:

- ½ C. Butter, Softened

-1 ½ c. Granulated Sugar, Sifted

-2 Eggs

-1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

-2 ½ C. All Purpose Flour

-2 tsp. Baking Powder

-½ tsp. Baking Soda

-1 tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice

-1 tsp. Cinnamon

-1 tsp. Kosher Salt

-1 C. Buttermilk

-1 C. Apple Cider, heated

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.  Set aside.

Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and salt.  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on low speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.  Add in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla extract.  Beat until incorporated.  Wipe down the sides of the bowl and the paddle with a rubber spatula. 

With the mixer on low speed, add in ¼ of the flour mixture.  Next, add in 1/3 of the buttermilk.  Continue to alternate adding flour and buttermilk – this process should both begin and end with the flour mixture.  Once smooth, turn off the mixer and wipe down the sides of the bowl again.

Turn the mixer back on low speed and slowly add in heated apple cider.  Mix until just combined.  Wipe down sides of the bowl, then transfer batter to prepared bundt pan.  Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 45-50 or until a cake tester comes out clean. 

Let cool in pan on a cooling rack for 15 minutes.  Invert cake and let cool the rest of the way on a cooling rack. 

For the FROSTING:

- ½ C. Apple Cider, reduced by half

- 4 oz. Cream Cheese, softened

- ½ C. Butter, softened

-1 ½ C. Powdered Sugar, sifted

-1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

-1 tsp. Cinnamon

- ½ tsp. Kosher Salt

Beat together cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer using the paddle attachment.  Beat until smooth and increased in volume, about 2 minutes.  Add in vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and apple cider, and beat until smooth. 

To ASSEMBLE:

Transfer the cake to a serving platter or pedestal.  Spoon heaping tablespoons of the frosting all over the cake – it should be dripping down the sides.  Don't be afraid to be generous!

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