My first Daring Bakers Challenge!

November 29, 2008 at 9:30 am 24 comments

WOW! this was such an exciting day.. My first ever Daring Bakers challenge!!
We had to make a lovely Caramel Cake witha very unique caramelized butter frosting that Shuna Fish Lydon posted on Bay area bites. And by the way she has a brilliant blog too.

I loved it so much, I made it TWICE.

My first cake was just as the recipe called for..


10 Tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
1 1/4 Cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 Cup Caramel Syrup (see recipe below)
2 each eggs, at room temperature
splash vanilla extract
2 Cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup milk, at room temperature

1.Preheat oven to 350F

2.Butter one tall (2 โ€“ 2.5 inch deep) 9-inch cake pan.

3.In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter until smooth. Add sugar and salt & cream until light and fluffy.

4.Slowly pour room temperature caramel syrup into bowl. Scrape down bowl and increase speed. Add eggs/vanilla extract a little at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down bowl again, beat mixture until light and uniform.

5.Sift flour and baking powder.

6.Turn mixer to lowest speed, and add one third of the dry ingredients. When incorporated, add half of the milk, a little at a time. Add another third of the dry ingredients, then the other half of the milk and finish with the dry ingredients. {This is called the dry, wet, dry, wet, dry method in cake making. It is often employed when there is a high proportion of liquid in the batter.}

7.Take off mixer and by hand, use a spatula to do a few last folds, making sure batter is uniform. Turn batter into prepared cake pan.

8.Place cake pan on cookie sheet or 1/2 sheet pan. Set first timer for 30 minutes, rotate pan and set timer for another 15-20 minutes. Your own oven will set the pace. Bake until sides pull away from the pan and skewer inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool cake completely before icing it.

9.Cake will keep for three days outside of the refrigerator.


2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1 cup water (for “stopping” the caramelization process)

1.In a small stainless steel saucepan, with tall sides, mix water and sugar until mixture feels like wet sand. Brush down any stray sugar crystals with wet pastry brush. Turn on heat to highest flame. Cook until smoking slightly: dark amber.

2.When color is achieved, very carefully pour in one cup of water. Caramel will jump and sputter about! It is very dangerous, so have long sleeves on and be prepared to step back.

3.Whisk over medium heat until it has reduced slightly and feels sticky between two fingers. {Obviously wait for it to cool on a spoon before touching it.}

Note: For safety reasons, have ready a bowl of ice water to plunge your hands into if any caramel should land on your skin.


12 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound confectionerโ€™s sugar, sifted
4-6 tablespoons heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2-4 tablespoons caramel syrup
Kosher or sea salt to taste

1.Cook butter until brown. Pour through a fine meshed sieve into a heatproof bowl, set aside to cool.

2.Pour cooled brown butter into mixer bowl.

3.In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, add confectioner’s sugar a little at a time. When mixture looks too chunky to take any more, add a bit of cream and or caramel syrup. Repeat until mixture looks smooth and all confectioner’s sugar has been incorporated. Add salt to taste.

Note: Caramelized butter frosting will keep in fridge for up to a month.
To smooth out from cold, microwave a bit, then mix with paddle attachment until smooth and light

And Voila!
Yes that is nutella..

I kept the frosting casual and used it quite sparingly. The cake is quite sweet.


The second time I made it, I used Splenda and did not ice the cake on top just sandwiched the cake with some butter-caramel frosting made with Splenda. It still tasted great.


So summing up: my experience as a daring baker has been awesome. I want to thanks Lis and Ivonne for letting me be a part of this wonderful community. I’m eager to know whats up next month ๐Ÿ˜€


Entry filed under: Baking, Cakes, Daring Bakers, Desserts, Rich.

Sun dried Tomatoes Cola Chicken

24 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Shaheen @ Ambrosia  |  November 29, 2008 at 10:15 am

    You made it twice! Brilliant! I love the cake. I’m just gobbling down a few!

  • 2. Yasmeen  |  November 29, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Lovely presentation! I’m a newbie to the club too!

  • 3. Eat4Fun  |  November 29, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    Congratulations on completing your first DB Challenge! Very nice job… great idea of making a cake sandwich. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • 4. plutosangel  |  November 29, 2008 at 5:21 pm

    thanks yasmeen, eat4fun ๐Ÿ™‚

  • 5. Speedbump Kitchen  |  November 29, 2008 at 6:40 pm

    Welcome to the DB! Congrats on your first challenge, beautiful!

  • 6. vibi  |  November 29, 2008 at 11:45 pm

    Welcome to the club! …and what an entrance you made! Congrats, the results are beautiful!

  • 7. TeaLady  |  November 30, 2008 at 1:21 am

    Welcome to DB. Great job on your first challenge. Cake looks pretty.

  • 8. Em  |  November 30, 2008 at 1:49 am

    NUTELLA. Genius. And a beautiful cake, too. Welcome to Daring Bakers.

  • 9. Ruth  |  November 30, 2008 at 3:31 am

    Great first challenge. Your cake lookes great. Mmm nutella sounds delicious with the flavor of this cake

  • 10. Jo  |  November 30, 2008 at 4:32 am

    Congratulations and great job on your very 1st challenge. Lovely deco and I like the idea of nutella – yum.

  • 11. Audax  |  November 30, 2008 at 5:41 am

    COngrats on your first completed challenge hope you enjoy BDers. Love the idea of a cake sandwich. Happy holidays to you and your kin.

  • 12. Raquel  |  November 30, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    I’m a fellow newbie, too. And your cake looks fantastic! Love that nutella touch.

  • 13. Elra  |  November 30, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    Congratulation on your first challenge. It came out really beautifully. Well done.

  • 14. Lynn  |  November 30, 2008 at 11:21 pm

    Well done on your first challenge. It makes me happy that you loved this cake so much that you made it not only once, but TWICE! Me? I didn’t like the cake all that much. Anyway, congratulations.

  • 15. katskitchen  |  November 30, 2008 at 11:24 pm

    Welcome to the DB’s. Youre cake looks great, simple but beautiful!

  • 16. Dolores  |  December 1, 2008 at 2:24 am

    Your first challenge, and you made it twice?!? Yep. You belong. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Congratulations, welcome, and thanks for baking with us this month.

  • 17. Sandra Avital  |  December 1, 2008 at 12:47 pm

    welcome to the DBers and congrats on your 1st challenge! Your cake is awesome!

  • 18. Gretchen Noelle  |  December 1, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    Made it twice? Incredible! Great job! Welcome to the Daring Bakers!!

  • 19. Celine's Cuisine  |  December 1, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Welcome to DB! wow you madeit twice, great. It look very, very nice great job…

  • 20. Claire  |  December 1, 2008 at 11:48 pm

    It looks wonderful! I’d love to taste the one with splenda. Did you make the caramel with splenda or just reuse the syrup from the first time? I wouldn’t think Splenda would make caramel well.

  • 21. plutosangel  |  December 2, 2008 at 2:33 am

    @ Claire: Thanks! would you believe it? I even made the caramel with Splenda!
    Even though it was not exactly like how caramel is supposed to be, but I got the brown color and once mixed with the butter, it tasted quite close to the original.
    Be sure to use little water and little Splenda to get the brown color. It takes a while to caramelize though. It’s also a lot more runny than regular caramel so make sure its absolutely cool when you make the frosting.

    @ everybody: Thanks so Much! I never thought I would get so many comments for my post! thanks1 ๐Ÿ˜€

  • 22. BC  |  December 2, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    Twice! You’re a double Daring Baker for sure!

  • 23. Disha  |  December 8, 2008 at 3:14 pm

    Hey Aalia, I really liked the look of the cake. Looks yummy. But, as u know cant eat it. Looking forward to some eggless cake recipes from u.. i know u will come up wid sumthng. Keep up wid the good work.

  • 24. ktshadley  |  December 29, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    That cake looks awesome, I’m thinking of joining the DB’s once I have a little more time.


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