I just received word that some close friends were drooling over the remembrance of my decadent rum cake recipe. I sent some to them a few years ago and haven't made it since. I just e-mailed them the recipe, but wanted to post it here so that everyone could share the love because recipes such as this one deserve to be passed on and shared. They achieve nothing by being locked up in a recipe box. This really captures the decadence and complete goodness of the holidays. You have to make it NOW to enjoy it later.
Make some extra and share with friends. I've included all my notes over the years so you can achieve the same exact taste and texture I get from Grandma's recipe. This is indeed an eye-rolling, fork-sucking, plate-licking delish dessert. It's perfect with tea, coffee, cocoa, or a shot of something. If you add ice cream, you're just sending it over the top. I remember my uncles sucking down piece after piece of it.
Some History - This recipe graced my dad's family holiday table for YEARS. Grandma took such pride in it. She did at least 4 HUGE cakes every year and held back one for Thanksgiving and one for Christmas. The other 2 she took to church for coffee after service - Presbyterian Church, mind you.
First though, get yourself a good bundt cake pan, tube pan, or one of those 6-cakelet pans. It really should be cast iron for this to work properly and get the proper golden brown hue for optimum yumminess. They have all sorts of designs and shapes for bundt cake pans, but for now if you don't have one, go to the thrift store and get one for $3. Make sure it doesn't have any big nicks or scratches in it. Season if necessary.
RECIPE - Bacardi Rum Cake
(From the 1950's when butter had no fat values, decadence was in, and Saran Wrap was the coolest new thing!)
Note: Please don't use cheap Monarch Rum. Bacardi/Captain, etc. is just a few dollars more. Pay for the good stuff. It really shows.
1 C chopped walnuts or pecans
1 yellow cake mix
1 pkg instant vanilla pudding mix
1/2 C cold water
1/2 C oil
1/2 C rum (80 proof)
1/4 lb butter (1 stick)
1/4 C water
1 C white sugar
1/2 C rum
- Preheat oven to 325.
- Using Crisco, grease your pan well. No blobs of white, just a nice slick coating. If your pan has points, use a pastry brush for the nooks and crannies.
- Sprinkle chopped nuts over bottom and sides of pan (I will use extra if I have them for good coverage.)
- Mix cake ingredients in order on box, adding pudding with dry ingredients and rum with wet.
- Pour over nuts in pan and bake one hour or until completely done.
- Let cool for 20 minutes, then remove cake(s) from pan.
- When luke-warm, prick sides and top of cake and drizzle with glaze.
(When pricking cake, don't 'jab' it, this compresses the cake, roll the pick (like bamboo kabob skewer) between your fingers while pricking. Perfect holes!)
- Melt butter in saucepan.
- Stir in water & sugar.
- Bring to a boil and boil 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in rum.
* You don't want to add the rum with the water for it will turn bitter.
** You can also experiment with different types of rum (Captain, Coconut, etc).
To Glaze -
- Place cake (or cakelets) on saran-covered plates with enough saran to wrap up sides of cake.
- Gently pour glaze over cake. DO NOT pour all at once. You will need to wait for the glaze to soak in. I think I do 3 pourings.
- It is NORMAL to have some liquid on the saran.
- Bring saran up sides of cake. Wrap more Saran around top and sides of cake. Place cake into zippie bag (small quarts for cakelets, gallons for larger cakes).
- Age cake.
Aging Cake -
- To age the cake, flip cake over once a week.
- I use an extra jelly roll pan or roasting pan to store the cakes.
- No need for refrigeration, there's no air due to the tight wrapping of the saran and zippie bags.
- Flipping the cake is essential for even distribution of the rummy glazey goodness. If you don't age and flip, your cake will be soggy and sodden, though still tasty.
- You want to age the cake about 8 weeks before consumption. So, for Thanksgiving, make cakes the mid-end of September. For Christmas/ New Years, make around end of October
- I put people's names on the zippie bags and make a master list. These cakes have a tendency to disappear. If people *know* they are getting one, it makes the wait that much more bearable.
DO NOT Double this recipe - for more than one cake, mix up separate mixes. You can however, double the glaze recipe.
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I'm so happy to share this. It's a classic recipe made dense from the pudding and buttery from the glaze and just a bit crunchy from the nuts.
Please don't ask about the calorie or fat content. It's astronomical. However, a strange phenomenon has occurred over the years - it is well known that when consumed with friends around a happy occasion, calories have been known to vanish.