Thanksgiving Cake

Today our church celebrated Thanksgiving a bit early with a big pot-luck style Thanksgiving dinner.  I honestly thought about bringing something not dessert, but I just kept coming back to cake.  I think by now most people expect me to bring a cake, and I am happy to do my part and not disappoint.

For this cake I wanted to experiment a bit. I purchased the Wilton checkerboard cake pan a while back, but I haven't had a chance to use it, so I thought this might be a good opportunity.  To make the checkerboard cake, you have to bake three layers, and I think I finally got the hang of it by the third layer! So, needless to say, my cake does not look like a checkerboard, but more like random areas of color, but that is okay. I think I will do better next time.

Since the cake was just a French Vanilla cake, and not very "Thanksgiving-y" I wanted to do something special for the frosting. I came across a recipe for a Caramel frosting, so I thought I would give that a go.  Unfortunately I missed the part about cooling before you whip, so it seized up on me. It still tasted good, so I thought it would work well for a filling instead of a frosting.  So in the end I used my stand-by almond buttercream, which is always a favorite and it all came together quite well.

The flower on this cake is piped in buttercream, re-using a technique that I used on an earlier cake for my daughter's birthday.  I used a tip #12 for this flower, piped dots and squashed them into a petal shape with the tip of one of my smaller spatulas.

The smaller flowers on the back sides were just pressure piped using tips 11 and 12. 

All told, I was pleased to see that our church has it's priorities straight... we had just about as many desserts as we had savory dishes... and it was all so very good!


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