Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Its that time of year again for the richness of pecan-laced baked goods and partiularly for my all time favorite , PECAN PIE CAKE . Since October of 1998 when I first read this recipe, it has been a big  BY REQUEST dessert at our house, our church, and the hosues of our friends. A bit labor-intensive it is for sure, but you will agree when you take your first bite that every minute was well spent!!! Employ your kiddos of a friend to help wit the pecan grinding, egg beating, ingredient measuring and one more time you'll find that "Many hands make light the work"  The Cranberry Zucchini Muffins recipe I found online and I really don't remember where, but it is a wonderful one too! I've made it as a bread in a 9" loaf pan rather than muffins and it works very well that way  too.

PECAN PIE CAKE       from Southern Living Magazine Oct 1998


• 3 cups finely chopped pecans

• 1 cup butter, softened and divided

• 1/2 cup shortening

• 2 cups white sugar

• 5 egg yolks (separate the eggs and set aside the whites)

• 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

• 1 cup buttermilk

• 2 cups all-purpose flour

• 1 teaspoon baking soda

• 1 cup chopped pecans

• 5 egg whites (saved from above)

• 3/4 cup dark corn syrup


• 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

• 1/3 cup cornstarch

• 4 egg yolks

• 1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream

• 3/4 cup dark corn syrup

• 1/8 teaspoon salt

• 3 tablespoons butter

• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

• Garnish

• 1 prepared pie crust, rolled flat, leaf shaped cookie cutters

• about 15 pecan halves

• 1 egg white beaten frothy


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Generously butter 3 (9 inch) pans. ***For large gatherings I use 2 – 10 “ pans but nothing else is different throughout. Divide 2 cups chopped pecans evenly between the pans. Shake to coat bottoms and sides of pans. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, cream together 1/2 cup butter, shortening and 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the yolks one at a time, then stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Combine the flour and baking soda and beat into creamed mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Stir in 1 cup chopped pecans.

3. In a large glass or metal mixing bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold 1/3 of the whites into the batter, then quickly fold in remaining whites until no streaks remain. Divide batter equally into prepared pans.

4. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. *Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. (*Any longer and your cake layers will stick and break apart!!) Invert layers onto wire racks lined with wax paper. Using a pastry ( or a BBQ brush) brush, brush tops and sides of cake layers with 2/3 cup corn syrup, and cool completely.

5. Make the Filling: In a large saucepan, combine 1/2 cup brown sugar and cornstarch. Stir in 4 egg yolks, half-and-half, 3/4 cup corn syrup and salt. Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat. Continue boiling, whisking constantly for 1 minute, or until thickened. Remove from heat. Whisk in butter and vanilla.

6. Chill.*My method is to put the pan of filling into a bowl of ice cubes and stir the filling for a few minutes. It’s SUPER FAST especially if you are wanting to assemble your art work all in one session.

7. Assemble the cake: Place first layer on serving plate, pecan side up. Spread with half (or *nearly all if you are doing 2 10” pans) of the filling. Place second layer, pecan side up, on filling. Spread with remaining filling. Top with remaining cake layer, pecan side up. (*Reserve a few teaspoons of filling for garnish leaves)

8. IF you are decorating with pie crust leaves as a garnish, heat oven to 425. Cut out leaves with cookie cutters out of prepared dough. Using a sharp knife carefully etch veins onto the leaves. Crumble small pieces of tin foil, spray them on a cookie sheet sprayed liberally with no- stick spray. Drape the leaves over the tin foil balls so that they will bake looking like naturally dropped leaves on the ground. Using scraps of dough and pecan halves, wrap pecan halves in dough so that they look like "acorns" Brush with egg white. Bake for about 7 -9 minutes or until golden. Remove carefully from cookie sheet. Using a bit of filling for "glue" place your leaves and "acorns " randomly on the top and sides of your cake.



Cranberry  Zucchini Muffins Recipe

For those of you who prefer to use oil over butter, be my guest (use 1 cup vegetable oil instead of the butter) but I have to tell you, I've made these both ways, and the butter version just tastes better.

3 cups grated fresh zucchini

2/3 cup melted unsalted butter

1 1/3 cup sugar

2 eggs, beaten

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 teaspoons baking soda

Pinch salt

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup walnuts  or   pecans (optional)  WE  prefer  pecans

1 cup raisins or dried cranberries

You won't need a mixer for this recipe.

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). In a large bowl combine the sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Stir in the grated zucchini and then the melted butter. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the zucchini mixture and mix in. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Stir these dry ingredients into the zucchini mixture. Stir in walnuts, raisins or cranberries if using.

2 Coat each muffin cup in your muffin pan with a little butter or vegetable oil spray. Use a spoon to distribute the muffin dough equally among the cups, filling the cups up completely. Bake on the middle rack until muffins are golden brown, and the top of the muffins bounce back when you press on them, about 25 to 30 minutes. Test with a long toothpick or a thin bamboo skewer to make sure the center of the muffins are done. Set on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the tin let cool another 20 minutes.

*Note, if you are including walnuts and dried fruit, you will likely have more batter than is needed for 12 muffins. I got about 14 muffins from this batch, and that included filling the muffin cups up as far as they could possibly go (above the surface of the muffin tin).  This also works  VERY WELL baked as a loaf.  USe a well greased 9"  laof pan and bake the batter fro about45 minutes. Test as with the muffins for doneness.  This recipe doubles well .

If you stop by and meet my family and me through this blog, please do leave me a comment. I'd love to know who you are!!!


Hannah said...

And I will attest to the pecan cake being delicious!!
I'm here, Linda, and I love my "visits" to your blog :-) Have a blessed Thanksgiving!!

Ranee said...

Thanks for sharing Pecan Pie Cake again. It looks yummy! I hope I can find time to make it for Christmas dinner this year.

whenpigsfly said...

Have fun with that recipe. This is the 13th Thanksgiving I will have made it, with numerous other occasions beside!