‘Tis the season to be endlessly annoyed by holiday sales and endless carols. And fruitcakes.
Want a high-quality peppermint dessert? Try this 1946 Betty Crocker recipe…
Peppermint Bonbon Cake
Sift together: 2 cups sifted SOFTASILK, 1 1/3 cups sugar, 3 tsp. double-action baking powder, 1 tsp. salt
Add: 1/3 cup high grade vegetable shortening, 1/2 tsp. lemon extract, 1/2 tsp. vanilla, and 2/3 of 1 cup milk. Beat 2 minutes.
Add: remaining 1/3 cup milk, 1/3 cup unbeaten egg yolks (4 medium). Beat 2 minutes.
Pan Size: 2 round layers, 8-in. diameter, 1 1/2-in. deep. (Grease and flour pans; then line bottoms with plain paper cut to fit and greased.)
Temperature: 350° (moderate oven).
Time: 30 to 35 minutes.
Tint half the batter a delicate pink with red food coloring. Pour here and there over white batter in pan. Cut through batter several times with knife for marbled effect. Frost with Fluffy White Icing flavored with peppermint and tinted delicate pink… forming ridge around top of cake and reserving several tablespoons to use later. Melt together 1 sq. (1 oz.) unsweetened chocolate and 1/4 tsp. shortening. Pour over top of cake keeping inside of ridge. When chocolate has set, drop small spoonfuls of pink icing on top to form 5 bonbons.
Dry ingredients are flour, sugar, a bit of salt, and a whole lot of baking powder. As in our Crisco Cake Comparison, this cake uses shortening, not butter.
Incidentally, I used 1 teaspoon of vanilla, not half vanilla and lemon extract. Not only did lemon seem a poor choice for a peppermint cake… I don’t have any lemon extract.
Three drops of red seemed about right for a “delicate pink”.
The batter was worryingly shallow in the pans; I had a hard time swirling the two colors together. (Tried, though.)
Decorating was a challenge since one square of baking chocolate is completely inadequate to cover the top of an 8″ cake. In the end, I needed about two and a half squares to get a thin layer all across the top.
The bonbons were fun to make, though.
And this really does look festive and fancy on the table — at least, fancier than most of my cakes (which tend to be flat and single-color).
In retrospect, I’m glad those bonbons are pink on chocolate, rather than the reverse.
Using 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract in the icing was delightfully minty; any more would be too strong, and start to overwhelm the sweetness. I would also recommend doing two layers of chocolate (one in the middle in addition to the one on top) to bump up the chocolatey goodness, and perhaps a slightly thicker frosting layer.
But I’m definitely nitpicking there. This dessert wins both on flavor and appearance. We all enjoyed it, and it was nice to have a December dessert that didn’t taste like eggnog or fruitcakes. Give it a try!
Softasilk brochure extract originally posted online by tomo_moko on Flickr.