Oh. My. Goodness. Every once in a while I will find a new recipe that just amazes me and this is one of them. My favorite style of cooking is Classic Southern Cuisine. The magazine, “Taste of the South”, is a great place to find these kind of recipes.
This cake recipe was in their August/September 2009 issue. The photo immediately caught my eye and the fact that it said “easy caramel” didn’t hurt either. You can cheat a little with this one because it uses jarred caramel sauce and does not require the homemade real deal which is notoriously hard to make. The cake part by itself is great and you can use this recipe with any toppings you like, but the caramel is wonderful! Try it…I think you will like it.
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
3 tsp vanilla, divided
3/4 cup half-and-half
2 12oz jars prepared caramel topping, divided
2 8oz packages cream cheese, softened
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 13×9 baking dish and set aside. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, beat butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Add eggs, one at a time, stirring to combine after each one. Add vanilla.
With mixer on low, add flour in 3 batches, alternating with half-and-half and beating until smooth. Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted near the center comes out clean.
Using a wooden spoon handle, poke several holes in the warm cake. Pour 1 jar of caramel topping over the cake. Let it sit at room temperature for several hours to absorb all of the caramel.
For the frosting: In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and 1 tsp vanilla. Beat at medium-high speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add confectioner’s sugar 1 cup at a time, beating until smooth.
Spread the frosting over the cooled cake. Pour the remaining jar of caramel topping over the frosting in a zigzag pattern. Drag a butter knife through the topping to create your desired design. Store tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. (If it lasts that long!)