Have two desserts in one – if you dare! – with a pie baked in a cake.
It was just so goofy, I had to try it.
A pie baked inside of a cake?
This oddball dessert-in-a-dessert came to my attention via a publicist’s e-mail. He was promoting food blogger Jessie Jane, who recently demonstrated a patriotic cherry pie cake on “Home & Family” on Hallmark Channel.
But as it turns out, the “pake,” as it’s called, has been a thing on the Internet for a couple of years, known as the turducken of desserts. (Turducken being that Thanksgiving favourite, a chicken roasted inside of a duck inside of a turkey.)
The epitome of this gimmick is a three-layer concoction known as a cherpumple. A cherry pie is baked inside a white cake, a pumpkin pie inside a yellow cake and an apple pie inside a spice cake. Then they’re stacked and frosted.
People who bake this tower of surprises are called “cherpumplers.” (I’m not making this up.)
I decided that one pie, one layer, was quite enough. (And the cherpumple, no surprise, has some stability issues.)
The formula is pretty simple. All you need is a springform pan, a two-layer batch of cake batter and a fully baked, two-crust pie 1½ to 2 inches (3.8cm-5cm) smaller in diameter than your pan.
That last requirement proved to be a little tricky.
For a 9-inch (23cm) pan, you need a pie no more than 7½ inches (19cm) in diameter. If you’re willing to bake your own pie, you can find 7-inch (17.5cm) pie pans online. I also found a frozen blueberry pie from Sara Lee measuring about 7½ inches.
I baked the frozen pie and set it on a rack to cool. Well, impatience got the best of me. When it was still ever-so-slightly warm, I thought: I’ll take it out of the foil pan and it will cool faster.
Bad idea. You guessed it: It fell apart. (I should have stuck it in the fridge instead.)
So I started over, this time purchasing an 8-inch (20cm) blueberry pie from a local grocery’s bakery, the smallest size I could find.
I made a new batch of cake batter, layered about a half-inch or so of batter in the bottom of – this time – a greased and floured 10-inch (25cm) springform pan and added the pie.
Then I poured in more batter to fill around the pie and over the top. (Note: If you use a 10-inch pan, you’ll need a little more batter than one box cake mix makes.)