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  • Writer's pictureChef Eric

Grandma Helen's Honey Cake Twisted

My love for cooking started with my grandmother. I created this EXPERIENCE LEVEL: @ spin on her honey cake in her honor, and each time I smell it baking, it takes me back to her kitchen in Brooklyn.

YIELD: 6–8 SERVINGS 3 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 1⁄2 teaspoon salt 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cloves 1⁄2 teaspoon ground allspice 1 cup vegetable oil 1 cup honey 1 1⁄2 cups granulated sugar 1⁄2 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed 3 large eggs, at room temperature 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup coffee or strong tea 1⁄2 cup fresh orange juice 1⁄4 cup whiskey 1⁄2 cup slivered or sliced almonds (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously grease three loaf pans, or two 9-inch square or round cake pans, or one 9- or 10-inch tube pan, with nonstick cooking spray. (For tube pans, line the bottom with lightly greased parchment paper, cut to fit.) In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and allspice. Make a well in the center, and add oil, honey, white sugar, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla, coffee or tea, orange juice, and whiskey. Using a strong wire whisk or in an electric mixer on slow speed, mix together to make a thick, well-blended batter, making sure that no ingredients are stuck to the bottom. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan(s). Sprinkle the top of the cake(s) evenly with almonds, if desired. Place the cake pan(s) on two baking sheets stacked together (this will ensure the cakes bake properly without the bottom baking faster than the cake interior and top). Bake until cake tests done; that is, it springs back when you gently touch the cake center. (For tube cake pans, this will take 60–75 minutes; loaf cakes, about 45–55 minutes; round pans 35–40 minutes.) Let cake stand 15 minutes before removing from pan.

BEST SEASON: This is a welcome treat any time of year.

CHEF’S NOTES: Grandma always drizzled a bit of dark rum on the cake prior to serving.

VARIATIONS: None—don’t mess with Grandma’s recipe!

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