This year one of our Christmas gifts was a cookbook that’s been on my amazon wishlist for quite some time, Sarabeth’s Bakery. The book is full of gorgeous photos, which is just about the highest thing on my list of requirements for any cookbook I own, and all of the recipes in this book look and sound amazing. We went to visit some friends on Wednesday, so I took that opportunity to pick a recipe from the cookbook to bake and bring along with us. My Grandmother recently made us raspberry jam, so I was hoping to find a recipe that could include some of that. I landed on a cake, called “Ruby Cake”, a buttery bundt cake with a raspberry & chocolate filling running through the middle. So good.
Here’s the recipe for Ruby Cake, adapted from Sarabeth’s Bakery
This cake calls for piping the batter & the jam into pastry bags, so you don’t accidentally let the jam touch the sides of the pan, which would make it burn. We for some reason don’t own pastry bags, so I carefully added the batter with just a spoon, and used a plastic bag for the jam. It worked out fine.
3 cups of Unbleached flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
16 tablespoons, aka two stick butter, straight from the fridge
2 1/4 cups powdered sugar (I used just under 2 + added an extra spoon of yogurt to make up for it)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temp
1 1/2 cups of sour cream (I only had a cup, used 1/2 cup of greek yogurt to substitute)
1/3 cup raspberry jam
1/4 cup finely chopped semi or bittersweet chocolate
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter & flour the bundt pan.
Sift dry ingredients together in a medium bowl, starting with the flour, then the baking powder, then the salt. Beat the butter for about one minute in your stand mixer on medium-high speed, using the paddle attachment- it should be completely smooth. Gradually add the sugar and vanilla, still mixing on medium-high, for around five minutes- you want it to be smooth & very pale in color. Gradually beat in the eggs. Reduce speed to low. Alternate in thirds adding the flour & sour cream to the mixer, starting with the flour, beating each addition until smooth.
This is the part that’s wonderful to have the book to see her illustrations. She has you put half the batter into a large pastry bag, and pipe a thick layer of batter onto the bottom of the pan. Then pipe two circles around the inner part of the pan, and the outer part, and use an offset metal spatula to create a small trough between the circles. As I said, I don’t own pastry bags, nor an offset metal spatula, so I just carefully put about half the batter in the pan, and used a spoon to make a trough in the batter. It worked out great.
Then put the jam in a pastry bag (or plastic snack bag if you’re like me) and pipe it into the trough, being careful not to let the jam touch the pan anywhere. Then sprinkle the jam with chocolate, again making sure not to let the chocolate touch the sides either. Place the remaining batter into the bag, pipe the rest into the pan (or as I did, use a spoon and carefully plop the rest of the batter on top of the jam & chocolate trough), and use a spatula to smooth it out. The last step is to insert a chopstick into the batter and carefully move it in spirals to distribute the filling into the cake. I found this part a little tricky, as I was afraid I’d certainly hit the edge or bottom of the pan and leave spots for the jam to leak out.
Bake for about an hour, or until the cake springs back when you gently press on the top of it. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert the cake onto the rack to cool completely. She says the cake can be stored at room temp, wrapped in plastic wrap, for up to two days.
I thought that this cake could have used double the amount of raspberry & chocolate. Next time I make it I’m going to do double the amount and have two separate spots that the filling runs through. I’ll let you all know how that goes when it happens.
This cake is delicious, and I would venture to say it’d be the perfect cake to have at brunch. It’s really dense and despite the amount of sugar in it, not too sweet. We had it in the afternoon with coffee with our friends, and it was a perfect little afternoon snack.