December 26, 2012

Anti-Recipe: Not Butternut Cake (aka the Best Christmas Cake Ever)

This cake happened by accident. The best things always do. It all started a few days before Christmas when my parents and I were reminiscing about the butternut cakes my grandma used to make for my dad at the holidays. They were really delicious and all that talk put us in the mood to have a butternut cake this year. So my mom decided to try and recreate the sweet treat for Christmas.

It's a really basic recipe using a boxed yellow cake mix with the addition of butternut flavoring. The cake is then frosted with scratch-made butternut flavored icing and chopped pecans. The problem was my mom couldn't find butternut flavoring anywhere in town.

Not one to let small setbacks stand in her way, she improvised with a mixture of vanilla and almond flavoring and I swear, the cake was even better than the original. Everybody loved it and asked for the recipe. We still have one small piece left that I'm rationing out like gold.

Here's the recipe if you're so inclined to try won't be sorry.

Not Butternut Cake

1 box Duncan Hines yellow cake mix
1 stick of melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract

Make the cake mix according to the directions on the box and add the melted butter and flavorings. Bake according to directions on box.


1 brick of cream cheese
1 stick of butter
1 box of powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 cup of chopped pecans

Cream together the first five ingredients. Stir in pecans. Frost cake according to your liking. Top with more chopped pecans or pecan halves for decoration.

(Here's a recipe for the butternut cake that seems most similar to the ones my grandma used to make...if you'd like to make this one instead.)