Bake Someone Happy this Valentine's Day.

For those of you who don't want to bother with fancy decorations here are two fabulous scratch cakes that offer big flavor without all the fuss. You simply can't go wrong with either of these easy-to-make cakes.

Classic flavors shine in these two cakes, because we put the focus on the ingredients that go into the cake, like rum and apple and orange and vanilla.

We simplified the presentation too! Dust with powdered sugar after cooled, then give each slice a generous dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream or a scoop of your favorite vanilla ice cream before serving. It's ALMOST as good as a hug.

French Apple Rum Cake

A rustic style made from scratch cake that's perfect for any occasion especially a cozy dessert for two on Valentine's Day.

The cake is light with hints of cinnamon and rum, which complement the fresh apples so well. Serve warm with a dusting of powdered sugar and a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or a hefty dollop of lightly-sweetened whipped cream for a delicious dessert.

French Apple Rum Cake Recipe

Prep Time: 1 Hour  |  Servings: 9

INGREDIENTS:
  • 2 small Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored and diced into 1/4" cubes
  • 1/4 cup Butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 cup Milk
  • 2 tablespoons Rum
  • 1 teaspoon Baker's Blend Vanilla Extract
  • Powdered Sugar, for serving
  • Vanilla Ice Cream or Whipped Cream, for serving

French Apple Rum Cake Recipe

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8"x8" round cake pan with parchment and lightly grease with baking non-stick spray.

2. In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar and egg until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.

3. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt, set aside.

4. In a small bowl, combine milk, rum and vanilla.

5. Add the flour and milk mixtures alternately to the butter mixture in two additions each.

6. Fold in the apples and pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 35-45 minutes, or until a knife or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

7. Let cool 10 minutes in the pan before inverting onto a cooling rack (or cake plate if you plan to serve immediately).

8. Serve warm with a sprinkle of powdered sugar, a scoop of ice cream, or a dollop of whipped cream.

Orange Ricotta Pound Cake

This Orange Ricotta Pound Cake is moist and tender because of the addition of ricotta. And it packs a big bright flavor thanks to the fresh orange zest and this incredible vanilla extract.  Serve with a little powdered sugar and whipped cream for a delightful sweet treat anytime.

Orange Ricotta Pound Cake Recipe

Servings: 10  |  Prep Time: 1 Hour, 30 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1-1/2 cups Cake Flour
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 3/4 cup Unsalted Butter, softened, plus more to grease baking pan
  • 1-1/2 cups Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
  • 1-1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon Granulated Sugar
  • 3 Large Eggs
  • 1 tablespoon Baker's Blend Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Orange, zested
  • Powdered Sugar, for dusting

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350˚ F. Grease a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan with butter and set aside.

2. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine.

3. Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter, ricotta, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With the machine running, add the eggs one at a time. Then add the vanilla and orange zest and mix until combined.

4. Add the dry ingredients, a small amount at a time, until just incorporated.

5. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean and the cake is beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 45 to 55 minutes.

6. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

7. Using a mesh sieve, dust the cooled cake with powdered sugar. Slice and serve.

Note: To determine if cake is done baking, use an instant-read thermometer to take the internal temperature of the pound cake - it should be about 200 degrees F.

Bakers, we hear you! You want a vanilla extract that will enhance everything you bake. Vain Original Baker’s Blend Vanilla Extract is made to be your new premium, all-purpose vanilla extract. Vain never cuts corners with their more exclusive extracts and this affordable, everyday blend is no exception. Premium vanilla beans are placed inside the sturdy amber bottle and covered with top-shelf rum. You can even use the bean in your baking when the extract is gone! Vain Original Baker’s Blend combines the classic rich vanilla tones of Planifolia beans and the delicate floral notes of the Tahenisis bean with a unique, subtle, underlying sweetness that can only be created when extracting in cane rum. The result is an exceptional vanilla extract that’s perfect for everyday use. Trust us, you're pantry needs this!

First up, a good quality cake pan. For evenly browned layer cakes of all types and sizes, Fat Daddio's Round Cake Pans has you covered! The 2" high round pans are available in 4, 6, 8 and 9 inch diameters and are durably constructed from 18-gauge aluminum to last a lifetime. These pans bake quickly and evenly and your cakes will turn out without a fuss.

Browse all Round Cake Pans →

Nothing beats a quality mixing spatula. These Flex-Core All Silicone Spatulas from Tovolo feature an innovative hard nylon core. The smooth and tapered silicone blade is supported by the nylon core, making it pliant enough to conform to the curves of bowls, but strong enough to stand up to heavy mixtures. The silicone coating is heat safe up to 600° F and creates a smooth surface for frosting cupcakes and cakes. The head of the spatula has both a rounded and squared corner that easily reaches into any spot. 

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It's worth every square inch of counter space! The Cuisinart Elemental 11 Cup Food Processor is 550-watts of lean, prepping muscle with a larger bowl that's ready for anything you throw its way. This great design just keeps evolving with the new patent pending SealTight™ Advantage System that seals bowls and locks blades for improved safety.

The Elemental Food Processor is a versatile workhorse with a powerful and smooth-running induction motor, 11 Cup work bowl, safety locking lid with the Supreme® wide-mouth feed tube, stainless steel "S" blade, reversible cutting disks and adjustable slicing disk. The base is silver in color and smooth for easy cleaning with 4 rubberized control buttons for high, low, off and pulse.  More info →

Apple prep gadgets deserve a spot in one of your kitchen drawers. The OXO Quick-Release Apple Corer is the perfect example. This stainless steel corer glides easily though an apple or pear to remove the core cleanly, and a simple squeeze of the comfort grip handle releases the core without any mess.

Browse all Apple Prep Tools →

When you need to cut butter or margarine into your dry ingredients, this OXO Dough Blender is the perfect tool for the job. The dough blender features sturdy stainless steel blades that are rust-resistant. The handle has a soft, non-slip grip for comfort and for use with wet hands. 

Browse all Pastry & Dough Tools →

 

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