American Cake: From Colonial Gingerbread to Classic Layer, the Stories and Recipes Behind More Than 125 of Our Best-Loved Cakes by Anne Byrn

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Alaska rhubarb cake

    • TrishaCP on March 22, 2020

      A really simple but delicious rhubarb cake. I thought the notes of vanilla and cinnamon were just right. I needed the 42 minute bake time, but I was also using frozen rhubarb.

  • Chez Panisse almond torte

    • abrownb1 on October 25, 2019

      This cake is so easy to make and always a hit. It only gets better with age so make it at least a day in advance and don't forget the powdered sugar! Impossible to resist sneaking just a little sliver every time you walk by :)

  • Texas sheath cake

    • a2cook on July 09, 2017

      Possibly the best chocolate cake I've ever had. So decadent, so fudgy, so delicious! This cake has a ton of butter and a ton of sugar! This is actually a good thing, believe it or not, because you can only have a tiny slice unless you want to fall into a sugar coma. It's great for those times when you have a chocolate craving because all you need is a few bites to satisfy that craving. This cake freezes well; in fact, it tastes great semi-frozen! Increased the cocoa (Penzeys high fat natural cocoa) slightly to 1/3 cup from 4 tablespoons in both the the cake and icing. Also used buttermilk instead of milk in the icing because I was out of milk. Cake domed slightly at the prescribed 400 degrees, so next time I'll decrease the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for about 5 minutes longer.

  • The wacky cake

    • SenseiHeidi on May 09, 2021

      Delicious & moist. Love the caramel icing. Next time make this a poke cake so every slice is as good as the corners. Added 1 tsp instant coffee to cake for flavor. Even the self professed chocolate haters had seconds. Checked at 20 minutes, still liquid in the center so I gave it 10 more minutes. Used glass Pyrex 9x13.

  • Tunnel of fudge cake

    • helskitchenvt on May 13, 2019

      I'm not convinced that the instructions are correct for plating - I think you need to let the cake cool for much longer before turning out of the Bundt pan or the walls won't be strong enough. I had less a tunnel of fudge and more a lagoon of fudge (which was nevertheless delicious). P.S. I did look up other recipes and some have you cool the cake in its pan before turning out - I say follow those versions and wait at least an hour before flipping it over!

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Reviews about this book

  • Baking Bites

    ...the recipes are clearly written and easy to follow, even those with multiple components. The book is packed with enough history that it’s interesting to read even if you aren’t doing any baking...

    Full review
  • ISBN 10 1623365430
  • ISBN 13 9781623365431
  • Published Sep 06 2016
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 352
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Rodale Books

Publishers Text

Cakes in America aren't just about sugar, flour, and frosting. They have a deep, rich history that developed as our country grew. Cakes, more so than other desserts, are synonymous with celebration and coming together for happy times. They're an icon of American culture, reflecting heritage, region, season, occasion, and era. And they always have been, throughout history.

In American Cake, Anne Byrn, creator of the New York Times bestselling series The Cake Mix Doctor, takes you on a journey through America's past to present with more than 125 authentic recipes for our best-loved and beautiful cakes and frostings. Tracing cakes chronologically from the dark, moist gingerbread of New England to the elegant pound cake, the hardscrabble Appalachian stack cake, war cakes, deep-South caramel, Hawaiian Chantilly, and the modern California cakes of orange and olive oil, Byrn shares recipes, stories, and a behind-the-scenes look into what cakes we were baking back in time. From the well-known Angel Food, Red Velvet, Pineapple Upside-Down, Gooey Butter, and Brownie to the lesser-known Burnt Leather, Wacky Cake, Lazy Daisy, and Cold Oven Pound Cake, this is a cookbook for the cook, the traveler, or anyone who loves a good story. And all recipes have been adapted to the modern kitchen.



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