Layer cakes are impressive, the way they’re stacked high, sandwiching pastry cream between the layers. Clever and comforting, all at once. I’ve made the “Maple-Walnut Layer Cake,” from The New Way to Cake, by Benjamina Ebuehi. This is my final cake selection from our featured 2020 cookbook. I’ve been baking a different cake from this book, for each month of 2020.

After a year with Ebuehi, I’ll say her flavor combos are innovative: cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, caraway; crystallized ginger and pears; chocolate and Guinness; jasmine tea and lemon; hibiscus flowers and buttercream; lemon curd and lavender; figs, blackberries, tahini, mascarpone; plums and black pepper; apples, sage, and caramel; grapefruit and lemon curd. Her mix of tastes are alluring, but not difficult to bring together. I was proud of every cake I made from this book, this year.

 

The Maple-Walnut Layer Cake is a pleasant one, as I had hoped. Modest, yet impressive. I used two 8-inch cake pans, rather than four, so I then sliced each cake in half horizontally, once baked. My bake time, due to my deeper cakes, was 45 minutes.

Now, look at the cake’s ingredients. Three sticks of butter! Crazy. And six eggs. I’ve got a thick batter, here.

Finely chopped walnuts are delightful in every bite of this cake. It’s a blond cake speckled with walnut bits, simple to assemble and pace.

The maple pastry cream includes too little maple syrup, I’m afraid. I yearn for much more maple than the scant 2½ tablespoons here. But, it’s forgivable, because we get a smooth, spreadable pastry cream, after folding in the stiff peaks of cream we’ve produced. It’s the pastry cream that pulls us into this cake, to eat it and keep eating it.

Offend no one with this cake, with no daring controversy. It’s walnuts and maple, after all.

Happy new year. Eat some cake.

Each month The Cake Slice Bakers are offered a selection of cakes from the current book we are baking through. This year it is The New Way To Cake by Benjamina Ebuehi. We each choose one cake to bake, and then on the 20th - never before - we all post about our cake on our blogs. There are a few rules that we follow, but the most important ones are to have fun and enjoy baking & eating cakes!

Follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest pages where you can find all of our cakes, as well as inspiration for many other cakes. You can also click on the thumbnail pictures below to take you to each of our cakes. If you have a blog and are interested in joining The Cake Slice Bakers and baking along with us, please send an email to thecakeslicebakers at gmail dot com for more details.

The Cake Slice Bakers also have a new Facebook group called The Cake Slice Bakers and Friends. This group is perfect for those who do not have a blog but want to join in the fun and bake through this book.

It is a new year and a new book - The New Way To Cake - traditionally our last bake for the year is free choice, so our choices for December 2020 were ~